Research undertaken within Northumbria University’s Newcastle Business School, has predicted a potential £50m in savings for SMEs it has collaborated with.

The Research Interest Group, operating within the department of marketing, operations and systems, led by Dr Alireza Shokri, is now keen to broaden its impact with SMEs by reaching out to those operating within supply chains, to help them achieve significant cost-savings by providing the knowledge to address sustainability and increase business productivity and efficiency.

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The group is a frontline platform which shares knowledge and skill with service and manufacturing enterprises of various sizes across the UK and beyond.

It has a national and international presence, working with bodies such as the Advanced Manufacturing Forum, Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply and Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport and Chartered Quality Institute.

Dr Alireza, Associate Professor in Operations and Supply Chain Management and Head of Subject group, said: “The message we want to be received by SMEs within the UK market, is those that feel ready to embrace change and innovation in their operations and supply chains, but don’t know where to start, should reach out to our team for help.

“They do not have to commit to anything and we can start an open dialogue and work together, utilising our wide-ranging knowledge and expertise, to help address any inefficiencies and look at how implementing useful practices and technologies can have a significant impact on the bottom line.

“Our in-depth research to supply chains and operations management and how continuous improvement or incremental improvement through knowledge and innovation can streamline operations and processes, has allowed us to predict the potential for £50m in savings, over an eight-year projection, for those SMEs we have looked at and we now want to assist many others.

“Businesses are continually seeking ways to increase profits and are so often caught up in day-to-day operations, they do not pause to address costly inefficiencies.”