MRO Magazine

New IDC MaturityScape Guides Manufacturers in Optimizing Inventory Management

September 28, 2015
By Business Wire News


Today’s manufacturing firms are moving away from a minimized approach to inventory management toward a “right-size” optimized approach. As a result, manufacturing firms are attempting to remove barriers and focus on one overall strategy that suits the entire firm rather than a few approaches to suit individual functions and/or sites. A more advanced version of this approach is taken by firms that are capable of defining an inventory strategy that optimizes performance beyond internal performance and expands inventory management to include trade partners to drive value-chain inventory performance improvements. A new IDC Manufacturing Insights report, IDC MaturityScape: Inventory Management (Doc #259101), helps manufacturing leaders in this effort and provides a framework for identifying the stages, critical measures, outcomes, and actions required for organizations to effectively evolve their inventory strategy to leading class.

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In order for a firm to optimize its inventory management, IDC emphasizes that it first take a look at its own practices and set in place the appropriate policies, processes, and tools. The new IDC MaturityScape provides senior leaders with a framework to assess their inventory management strategy, identify where they stand in relation to inventory management excellence, and create a path towards achieving a leading class inventory management strategy. In addition, organizations can use the report as a tool to promote cross-functional and inter-organizational collaboration to drive performance improvement and bring the end-to-end value chain into alignment.

“Inventory is a significant asset of any manufacturing organization and is tied up until that inventory is used in production or sold to the end customer. Therefore, effective inventory management can play a critical role in helping manufacturers to improve cash flow and create value for the firm,” said John Santagate, Research Manager, IDC Manufacturing Insights. “Considering that inventory can reside both within the four walls of a manufacturing organization as well as out in the distribution channel, it becomes imperative that manufacturers seeking to optimize business performance place a heavy emphasis on improving inventory management.”

Helping to incite innovation in the area of inventory management are 3rd Platform technologies: Big Data/Analytics, Cloud, Social, and the 3rd Platform accelerator, the Internet of Things. These technologies are making inventory visibility across the network and value chain a reality and driving enhanced collaboration throughout the supply chain. IDC asserts senior IT and business leaders must create a path towards an optimized inventory management strategy that spans the value chain. Competition is no longer between leading companies as much as it is between leading supply chains.

“In an effort to help guide organizations in their journey towards a leading class inventory management strategy, our new IDC MaturityScape helps identify gaps in current business process, IT capability, and process governance among business units or between business and IT, and provides a framework to define how firms can progress through the stages of maturity effectively,” concluded Santagate.

For additional information about this report or to arrange a one-on-one briefing with John Santagate, please contact Sarah Murray at 781-378-2674 or Reports are available to qualified members of the media. For information on purchasing reports, contact; reporters should email

About IDC MaturityScapes
IDC MaturityScapes are used by IT executives and their enterprise partners to have a structured way to identify their current level of maturity, and the gap between where they are and where they want to be to maintain competitive balance or achieve industry superiority. Using IDC MaturityScapes is a way to reduce the friction of change, to make more precise investments, and to identify the details of governance, process, technology, organization, and other factors that can derail the best-laid technology initiative.

About IDC Manufacturing Insights
IDC Manufacturing Insights assists manufacturing businesses and IT leaders, as well as the suppliers who serve them in making more effective technology decisions by providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry experience, our global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing asset intensive, brand oriented, technology oriented, and engineering oriented manufacturing industries. International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology, media, research, and events company. For more information, please visit, email, or call 508-988-7900. Visit the IDC Manufacturing Insights Community at

Allyson Hughes, 508-935-4546
Program Director
Attune Communications
Sarah Murray, 781-378-2674