Over the last 12 months, the supply chain department at packaging wholesaler, Moonen Packaging, has recently completed one of Slimstock’s inventory management training programs with the Slimstock Academy. Through undertaking a range of in-house inventory management training programs as well as playing the supply chain game, awareness and knowledge of inventory management have greatly improved throughout the entire organisation. 

Taking full advantage of Slim4

Moonen has been using Slim4 to manage their inventory for more than 10 years. Over this time, the number of backorders have been almost entirely eliminated while the stock turn increased by 20%. However, when Van Bussel joined the company in 2016, he could see that there was the potential to get far more from Slim4. There was only one person in the organisation who knew the system really well but they only used it at an operational level. Van Bussel goes on to explain: “It was a real shame; we had a really advanced system, but no one knew how to really utilise it.”

Extensive inventory management training programmes

Van Bussel turned to the Slimstock Academy to help develop a program that could improve the level of knowledge of Moonen Packaging’s entire supply chain team. In addition to the operational training around inventory management and Slim4, this program consisted of five-days of in-house training that focused on addressing the business’ tactical and strategic inventory issues. Furthermore, through playing the supply chain game, the whole team were able to improve their awareness of the dynamic nature of inventory within a supply chain as well as the crucial role of communication.

Tactical inventory decisions

The training program has now been completed and, already, it has provided us many new insights, says Van Bussel: “We have decided to create a new planning layer for making tactical inventory decisions based on ABC analysis. We have worked with these general guidelines for a number of months to determine which articles we wanted to stock.

In order to further improve our position, our planners have reviewed C-products, which sell relatively slowly and take up a lot of time to manage, in order to re-negotiate smaller minimum order quantities. Throughout the training, we could see that our planners should spend more time focusing on A-products. However, from a tactical perspective, we must also work on creating the right business conditions.

New goals

Now that the knowledge programme has been completed, Moonen Packaging will implement the latest version of Slim4. This was a carefully considered decision, says Van Bussel, to ensure that the new insights gained from the training can be translated directly into the new system. “We now have the knowledge in order to take full advantage of Slim4.” The company has set itself new supply chain goals. The investment in inventory must fall from 7 to 6.5 million euros. Furthermore, the availability of A-items must increase to 98%.