Addressing Broadband Deployment Challenges Series

Supply Chain Management Solutions for Inventory Management Challenges

Welcome to the second in a series of articles discussing a variety of broadband deployment challenges. Each month, Wesco will discuss different challenges that providers are facing and how we can help navigate complex projects of this scope. This month we are discussing inventory management challenges and solutions to help providers overcome them. Check back each month for additional topics of interest.

The Importance of Inventory Management

Broadband providers that are deploying new fiber networks navigating the enormous volumes of materials for their projects. Shortages or material delays can critically affect a project. At the same time, they are concentrating on running the day-to-day functions of their actual business.

With speedy deployment and the need to minimize overall costs being of the utmost importance, many broadband providers are finding that inventory management is vital to the success of their project. Having accurate inventory management provides visibility for managers to coordinate deliveries and lead times and ensure adequate materials are available for each stage of the deployment.

Primary Challenges of Inventory Management

The most common inventory management challenges include:

  • Having accurate inventory counts
  • Outdated or undocumented processes that slow down operations
  • Inefficient tracking of project material trends and deadlines
  • Utilization of warehouse space

Poor inventory management can negatively impact the bottom line. Providers are outsourcing this part of their project to supply chain experts who have experience with broadband deployments, the types of materials used, and the overall process flow.

Wesco Warehouse Inventory Management

How to Address Inventory Management Challenges

Let’s outline solutions to the challenges mentioned above that can help take inventory management to the next level.

  1. Accurate inventory provides status on inventory levels, lets you set reorder points, maintain adequate inventory to meet demands, and avoid costly mistakes in ordering. An experienced inventory management partner will be able to implement an automated inventory management system that provides you the data and analytics to ensure you can quickly be responsive and more agile to your inventory needs. This data can also be integrated to communicate with your current ERP system.
  2. Improving processes is essential to efficiently managing storage space, material handling, and movement of inventory. The materials for broadband projects can be different from an organization’s day-to-day materials and having an inventory management provider who has industry experience with these types of projects can help ensure that your deployment runs smoothly. By taking proven processes and tailoring them to meet your project needs your overall operations become more effective.
  3. Tracking of trends and deadlines helps to maintain consistency and allows for accurate planning and product availability. This ensures that inventory is in stock at the right time and in the right place. Having a world-class partner can help eliminate guesswork and provide accurate forecasts and help you anticipate demand.
  4. Data management can be both challenging and time consuming. Implementing an automated process will give you accurate information on inventory levels, values, stock movement, usage, location, and trends. It also gives you access to valuable reporting tools for real-time data for future planning.
  5. Efficient utilization of warehouse space can decrease costs, increase productivity, and streamline your project. A partner with a proven warehouse management system can help you optimize product placement and effectively and efficiently manage capacity. This is especially important when you are tracking large volumes of materials.

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Optimize Performance Tailored to your Needs

When utilizing an outside partner for your inventory management requirements, it is important that they tailor their services to meet the unique needs of any large-scale fiber network deployment. Having a scalable approach to inventory management can help an organization adapt to increasing or decreasing demands and improve overall operational efficiency.

Why Collaborative Planning and Partnerships are Important

Communication is imperative for adopting agile solutions to solve problems and implement changes. Defining clear roles helps promote accountability and expectations. When done well, this can improve productivity and profitability. Finding the right inventory management partner for your project can help you achieve your goals and optimize resources.

Why Wesco?

Having years of experience in broadband network deployment and supply chain operations, Wesco has built a reputation in the industry for providing creative solutions that tackle complex projects and help providers operate with a higher degree of efficiency and productivity.

When it comes to inventory management, Wesco has a wide range of supply chain and digital capabilities to help you increase accuracy, efficiency, productivity, tracking, and recording of any large-scale fiber build. From single locations to multiple warehousing, kitting, staging, just-in-time deliveries, and vendor managed inventory, Wesco has the tools to simplify your inventory management needs and provide pinpoint accuracy and total accountability.

Are you ready to get started and optimize your supply chain? Wesco has the tools to get you there. From customized solutions for any portion of your fiber deployment, to full project management, Wesco understands the challenges and has innovative solutions and a proven track record to ensure a successful fiber build.

Donna Yates Author


Donna Yates
Donna Yates is an experienced freelance writer with over 25 years of experience generating marketing strategies, programs, and collateral specifically focused on the Utility, Broadband, Global Service Providers, and Wireless markets.


Get in touch with our experts.

Are you ready to future-proof your supply chain? Wesco has the tools to get you there. From customized solutions for a portion of your fiber deployment to full project management, we have a proven track record of successful fiber builds.

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