How Leo Pharma is Humanising the Supply Chain

Supply chain management aims to maximise customer value and achieve a sustainable competitive advantage. It’s representative of a conscious effort by supply chain firms to develop and run supply chains in the most effective and efficient manner possible.

Supply chain activities cover everything from product development, sourcing, production, and logistics, as well as the information systems needed to coordinate these activities.

Leo Pharma understand the importance of the supply chain and the vital role that it plays in business. However, recognising the need to become more ethical and sustainable, the company has implemented, over a 24-month period, a new solution that is fully scalable, and one that is up and running for 30 affiliates and departments in real production environments.

“It’s decentralised in the sense that we have around 400 people who have access to the system in order to make their requests,” said Leo Pharma’s Head of Operational Procurement, Martin Starcke. “We have a very efficient team doing the sourcing and procurement.”

Leo Pharma and the Supply Chain

Digitising the supply chain starts out generating benefits for all parties involved with a business, with a focus on the fulfilment of supplier contracts. You need a system for this, rather than autonomous behaviour. Starcke, who has been successfully implementing software within Leo Pharma for more than a decade, has recognised that the key to a successful digital transformation is more about the people who work there rather than the technology alone.

“It’s around people and processes, but definitely the most important part is the people” said Starcke. “We want to utilise and build stronger partnerships with our vendors – build an efficient ‘machine’ to buy the stuff we need and help compliance through easy purchasing.”

The systems which are put in place should have a laser-like focus on making people’s working lives smoother. In humanising the supply chain, Leo Pharma are making the system work for what it needs, rather than the company working for the system.

Responsible supply chain management is vital within the current pharmaceutical climate, as stakeholder expectations are rising in relation to this area – with increasing requirements from international guidelines and legislation.

Leo Pharma is keen to know the social and environmental impact that it’s having on the world and throughout its supply chain and is actively working with business partners to continually improve practices. In humanising these specific elements of the supply chain, the brand is demonstrating how conscious it is to the impact it’s having on the environment and people in general – building the brand’s reputation as a socially aware company.

Leo Pharma and People

Leo Pharma’s supply chain management is being rebuilt to bring benefits to the people, rather than the people bringing the benefits to the system. Starcke claims that many Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems in use today are still built for processes rather than for people.

There is now a growing focus on usability that was not present just five years ago. With the technological advancements available to us today, it means that it’s possible to work far more effectively, most notably within mobility. It’s now possible to work almost entirely from mobile devices and that is something that’s defiantly on the rise, something the industry is harnessing and using to its advantage – another example of how Leo Pharma is humanising the supply chain and the making the system work for them.

The wide change in the role of IT in business is another major factor with the rise of pervasive networks and cloud computing in recent years. This means that the company is able to recover far easier from economic crashes and that IT is no longer merely about keeping the business running. With digital systems representing such an influential part of our daily lives, IT and humans must be able to work in collaboration to create an effectively functioning supply chain.

Final Thoughts

Through its innovative and now humanised supply chain management, Leo Pharma ensures the processes and systems which are in place are responsible and economically sustainable, which in turn minimises the adverse impact the industry can have on people and the environment across all touch points.

Humanising the supply chain is a bold move which Leo Pharma has successfully implemented, and the company is now reaping the benefits of this ethical and innovative strategy. This is a strategy many companies have the potential to put into place and completely reinvent the way in which supply chain management operates.

How to create a more ethical and sustainable supply chain is set to be a hot topic at LogiPharma 2020, being held in April, at the Nice Acropolis, France. Please download the agenda today for more information and insights.

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