Don’t Forget Technology Goals in Your Strategic Plan - Modern Distribution Management

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Don’t Forget Technology Goals in Your Strategic Plan

Brent Grover: Well-executed technology investments can make a real difference for distributors.

When planning for 2013, distributors can’t afford to ignore rapidly advancing technology, which touches diverse business areas from e-commerce and sales to warehouse management, customer service and logistics.

“For distributors, well-executed technology investments make a real difference,” says distribution consultant Brent Grover in The Little Black Book of Strategic Planning for Distributors. Analyzing a company's internal environment is one of the first steps Grover says a distributor should take in the strategic planning process.

The SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis is a helpful framework for that step, and it can be used to determine the opportunities and threats presented by a company's current software programs and its ability to make good use of them.

The MDM 2012 Reader Survey revealed three areas of technology that are front-of-mind for distributors coming into 2013: e-commerce, mobile and analytics (more on these technology trends here).

Having the right technological tools and being able to use them well will be a differentiator in 2013. Distributors who are honest with themselves during the strategic planning process about how poor technology can threaten business goals will have a clear view of potential opportunities to turn those weaknesses into strengths.

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