Skip to content
Header Secondary Logo
Header Secondary Logo

Leverage Technology to Control Costs with Fashion Supply Chain Management

Leverage Technology to Control Costs with Fashion Supply Chain Management


Explore Apparel ERP

Leverage Technology to Control Costs with Fashion Supply Chain Management

1 Nov 2022

Aptean Staff Writer
Group of people in modern fashion office

With the fashion industry being one of the fastest-growing consumer segments in the world—and as industry expert Edwin Keh states, "one of the most globalized supply chains of any industry in the world"—ongoing supply chain disruptions, inflation and a skilled worker shortage add layers of complexity to the fashion and textile supply chain.

Effective supply chain management is essential for any business, but for the fashion industry, it’s crucial. According to McKinsey’s State of Fashion Report, 84% of fashion brand executives stated that supply chain pressures would affect their business the most. The experts at McKinsey predict that material shortages, transportation bottlenecks and rising costs— exacerbated by increasing consumer demand—will remain in the year ahead.

How your company manages the fashion supply chain can make or break your brand. Therefore, it’s imperative that fashion and apparel brands streamline and simplify their supply chain processes to meet consumer demand and adjust to shifts in the supply chain. 71% of apparel business leaders felt that the lack of digital tools impacted their ability to respond to supply chain disruption.

The tools you need are out there—let’s explore what they are and how they can help you.

How Technology Helps Fashion and Apparel Brands Reduce Costs

Your apparel company cannot control what ocean freight companies charge, nor can you do anything about rising inflation and the commensurate high cost of goods. What you can do is keep expenses in your enterprise in check through the intelligent use of technology.

Businesses that adopted enterprise resource planning (ERP) software reduced operations costs by 23% and administrative costs by 22%. Companies that adopted an industry-specific ERP saw even bigger returns, with a 5% increase in revenues over generic ERP solutions.

Bring Predictability to Material Inventory with Materials Requirements Planning (MRP)

MRP is a resource management system that improves inventory planning, scheduling, production and management. Carrying excess inventory is expensive; and inventory and resource management is a delicate balance between product availability and cost. MRP helps you maintain that balance. Your MRP schedules inventory replenishment precisely so that you'll receive exactly what you need, when you need it.

With Aptean Apparel ERP having an integrated MRP system built into the software, you’ll improve margins because every aspect of material and resource planning is under your control while experiencing these additional benefits:

  • Improve production efficiency: Apparel companies often have complex manufacturing requirements. MRP calculates the time required for each step, determines the labor and resources you’ll need and avoids production bottlenecks.

  • Avoid over- or understock of materials: MRP enables precise ordering of finished goods and/or raw materials using your existing production schedule. The tool analyzes the amounts needed based on current schedules and gives you the visibility to calculate upcoming requirements.

  • Reduce purchasing costs: MRP determines the specific amounts of raw materials and allocates that inventory to the exact area as needed. This keeps excess materials inventory in check and production costs lower.

  • Gain control over materials inventory: With native, built-in MRP in your apparel ERP, you will have complete visibility into what supplies are in stock, which are on back order and what you’ll need for the next production run. The procurement team can keep stock levels in line with manufacturing order requirements.

The seasonal nature of the apparel industry means that demand fluctuates constantly. If you plan accordingly, you'll be better prepared to meet that demand with forecasting data based on both seasonal fluctuations and historical data.

Avoid Transportation Bottlenecks with Full Supply Chain Visibility

A fully-integrated, industry-specific ERP for the apparel industry enables real-time monitoring, tracking and analysis of crucial supply chain components. As a centralized database, an ERP improves visibility and facilitates decision-making throughout your organization.

Everyone in the company has access to the same information, including production, warehouse, delivery and sales. You will have the relevant financial data and performance information to make fully informed decisions, even in the face of bottlenecks throughout the supply network while realizing these key benefits:

  • Gain real-time visibility: An apparel ERP solution provides real-time, or near real-time, updates on logistics and inventory. You’ll know about possible disruptions, and you’ll be able to make informed, proactive decisions to find another workable solution.

  • Manage your warehouse effectively: Aptean Apparel ERP has warehouse management tools that give you a holistic overview of warehouse operations, even across multiple locations. You’ll have an accurate picture of current inventory levels and warehouse capacity, which improves supply chain transparency by mitigating overstocking and stock-out situations.

  • Discover actionable insights: The advanced reporting in Aptean Apparel ERP compiles your historical order data, trends and inventory levels and helps you detect patterns. This data can then be used to project and estimate resources as well as accurately forecast customer demand.

With your apparel ERP, you now have complete visibility into the supply chain. Here’s a real-world example of advanced business reporting at work: You run a forecasting report and discover that several of your raw material components will be running low. You plan a decreased production run with this information instead of shutting down. Through careful planning, you still meet demand and increase the bottom line.

Reduce Costs Throughout the Enterprise with Industry-Specific Apparel ERP

Reducing supply chain costs comes down to inventory and resource flexibility, production efficiency, warehouse management and accurate visibility.

Fashion supply chain management is a legitimate challenge that requires constant monitoring and analysis, but the right software will help you mitigate risks across the value chain. An industry-specific, apparel ERP with integrated tools like MRP will give you the visibility and control you need to handle any disruptions that may come your way.

Streamline communications. Control inventory. Manage resources. Minimize production bottlenecks. All with an apparel ERP solution from Aptean to meet your fashion supply chain challenges.

Supply chain visibility is a key driver of company growth. Aptean Apparel ERP can keep your production on track by helping you manage resources and respond quickly to disruption. Ask for a demo to see how.

Start transforming your fashion and apparel business today

If you’re ready to take the next step, we’d love to help.

Lady in red dress and high heels