A number of representatives from the leading FTSE 500 manufacturing companies were at the Financial Times Conference Centre in London last week to hear how e-business services would transform British industry.
Among the speakers at The Captains of Industry Summit was Dave Anning, group IT director at engineering firm TI Group.
Anning told delegates how his company, which has a turnover of around £3bn, had completely transformed its inventory management system, saving millions of pounds in the process. “In the few short months since our board approved the e-procurement project, we have already made savings well in excess of the cost in setting up the software,” he revealed.
Anning also pointed out that access to the company’s inventory information had been very vague in the past, whereas now he could “find out exactly what we have ordered, down to the last biro. “As a consequence of putting our suppliers on the new system, we have also been able to negotiate cheaper deals,” he added.
Christopher MacGowan, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), said that car buyers in the UK would increasingly use the Net when making new purchases. “Five years from now, we predict that upwards of ten per cent of car buyers will buy over the Internet, forcing the cost of buying a car down significantly.”