According to PXL Marketing’s Keith Tan, a couple of key incidents in 2021 impacted the supply chain industry: the Suez Canal blockage in March and the closure of several of China’s main ports due to COVID outbreaks.
“These led to increased product demand with limited stock supply,” Tan observed.
The difficult early days of the pandemic, however, has taught the Malaysia-based food packaging supplier to be more proactive. Their solution is to take preemptive measures to increase stock capacity.
“For this purpose, we have started relocating to a bigger warehouse facility in Malaysia’s Bukit Jalil Integrated Business Park in Q4 2021,” Tan revealed.
“Our inventory and warehouse management system has also been improved since the integration with the SAP Business One system, which has provided better alignment between the sales and supply chain teams, and enabled better inventory monitoring as well as stock projection to ensure better stock management for PXL’s consumers,” he added.
It certainly looks that PXL has learned important lessons since 2020, but is the world ready for another pandemic? Tan is quite optimistic.
“I believe every person, company, and industry possesses their own valuable experience and lessons from the pandemic, which would help them be better prepared for another outbreak,” he said.
Seeing gains ahead
The PX workplace has also transformed since local lockdowns have been enacted.
“Throughout the Movement Control Order implemented in Malaysia from 2020 to 2021, PXL continues to operate remotely as we virtually conduct internal sales training and customer consultations,” Tan said.
“The implementation of the SAP CRM and Opportunity Module was timely for us, as it digitises our processes and maximises our resources working from home,” he continued.
As 2022 ramps up in terms of activity, PXL Marketing is eyeing three priorities for the year:
- Business growth.
- Prompt fulfilment to enable customers to smoothly run their businesses.
- Sustainability by focusing on more eco-friendly products.
To make these happen, the supplier utilises SAP Business One, an enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, to streamline the supply chain performance of its sustainable packaging distribution.
Tan noted that PXL Marketing has seen a 30% increase in its supply chain productivity since the ERP’s initial implementation.
“The data extraction and integration have empowered our supply chain department to conduct forecasts for our customers. This has also helped us achieve more seamless management and connectivity across PXL’s different departments,” he added.
As for technology predictions, Tan is rather specific as to what he believes will come into play over the next year.
“PXL’s operations rely on an interconnected global supply chain network. We anticipate that the technology that will bring improvement to our industry is a cloud-based system that can provide reliable integration between ERP and customer relationship management. It will serve as an integrated portal to enhance data insight delivery for improved versatility and access,” he said.
Although the production and shipping restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 lockdowns have disrupted the disposable packaging supply chain industry, now more than ever, Tan remarked that they are seeing a higher demand for disposable packaging and an increased awareness on hygiene.
“As Malaysia moves toward an endemic transition phase, we anticipate food and beverage outlets to continue using disposable plates and utensils for serving dine-in customers. It’s not only more hygienic; it also requires less operation manpower,” he concluded.