Informatics and Textiles Manufacturing
Information Technology performs a crucial role in the textile industry. The textile companies that have already adopted information technology have enhanced their performance in various forms. Information Technology and Information Technology Enabled Services have helped improve the overall performance in the textile industry. The use of machinery with the latest technology that is available utilizes IT in various areas like quality control, production monitoring, and control. The manufacturing unit employ material, men, machine and money in its functions. The managers are supposed to focus on synchronizing the four factors to achieve organizational success and to develop synergies in operations within and outside the organization.
The reason why companies are opting for IT is to enhance its Supply Chain Management due to the increased competition. Generally, the use of technological power or informatics is a way of adding value to their business. Supply Chain Management involves procuring, sourcing, converting and all other logistics (Potdar, Routroy & Behera, 2017). It helps increase the speed of transactions by reducing inventory, real-time exchange of data, and increased sales volume by satisfying customer requirements more effectively and efficiently.
The textile industries require the support of information technology due to the lack of information concerning the aspects of demand and supply. A manager takes most of the decisions concerning issues of demand and supply. For results to be obtained, some decisions that involve risk and uncertainty have to be taken. One of the problems managers face is excess inventory, which results in poor sales, outdated stock, long cycle time, low rates, and reduction in order visibility, leading to customer dissatisfaction. Second is the long procurement period.
The process of procurement takes a longer time when using the traditional textile industry. At the early stages Is when a retailer is supposed to forecast demand and identify consumption trends. Lack of clear future results to running out of stock early, delay or overstock. The third is incompetency in the supply chain. The process of developing samples, designing, manufacturing, getting approval and dispatching to payment approval involve inefficiency with the urge to get global textiles and apparel. Information Technology development has intersected every application there is in the textile industry. It has put intelligence at each node of the supply chain to manufacturing and process control.
Forth is stepping into the global trade. When a company is going global, it is a fact that many opportunities are opened and threats in terms of changing trends, competition, and other changes in the environment. Information Technology ensures that all kind of information is managed efficiently at a faster speed. In the textile supply chain, Information Technology assists in first, sharing of information. Information needs to flow properly among supply chain members. The flow influences the performance of overall supply chain operations, which involves inventory status, data about customers and their demand, payment details, shipment schedules, among others.
Examples of two Information Technology tools that facilitate information integration are Barcoding and Electronic data interchange. Barcoding enables detailed data recording through the conversion into an electronic form. It is easy to share it among members through an Electronic data interchange system. The Electronic Data Interchange helps managers in analyzing and applying it in decisions regarding the business. Second, supporting planning and execution operations. In the supply chain, management planning and coordination are very important issues.
After the information is shared, the next step happens to be planning, which involves the joint design and implementation for demand forecasting, product introduction and replenishment. The supply chain members play roles and responsibilities decided by themselves and coordinated through the Information Technology system. Third, coordination of the flow of logistics. Coordination of workflow includes activities like order execution, design optimization, procurement, financial exchanges and implementing changes whose results are time and cost-efficiency.
The contribution of Information Technology towards the maximization of the value of the textile supply chain is very important. One of the ways IT contributes includes integrating supply chain operations outside and within the organization and collaborating the customers and vendors’ acts based on shared forecasts (Bhaskar, 2016). The internet is also important as it adds to the IT contribution towards supply chain management by integrating, coordinating, and automation of critical business processes. As a result of business innovation contributed by the internet, new supply chain game systems emerge.
The new business models that emerge from Information Technology include data mining and data warehousing, among others. Analyzing data from different viewpoints then summarizing it into useful information, which can be used in monitoring and control, is data mining. Data mining enables companies to focus on the most important aspects of the business. Data warehousing is the data repository, which is the process of centralized data management and retrieval. Data mining and data warehousing enable textile companies to focus on the important aspects of business and analyze it in different dimensions.
In conclusion, the giants in the textile industry can add an internet shopping component as part of their offering, which affects their distribution and warehousing infrastructure in various ways. Going online has helped retailers to change their strategy in the supply chain. E-commerce enables textile companies to execute their plans for the expansion of the business. The department of Information Technology enables the interaction of the company with the peers and end-users of the industry. Information Technology facilitates the functions of the entire manufacturing setup. Therefore, there is a need for Information Technology in the Textile Industry in the present era.
Potdar, P. K., Routroy, S., & Behera, A. (2017). Agile manufacturing: a systematic review of literature and implications for future research. Benchmarking: An International Journal.
Bhaskar, H. L. (2016). A critical analysis of information technology and business process reengineering. International Journal of Productivity and Quality Management, 19(1), 98- 115.