All businesses rely heavily on efficient, safe, and accurate supply chain management. Without it, commerce will falter; goods will not reach markets on time, delivery will become too expensive for companies, and people will suffer from not receiving basic needs.
Supply chains must maintain optimal performance. And one way to ensure this is through the adoption of critical predictions that allow your business to thrive amid changes in the industry.
Emerging Technologies for the Supply Chain Industry
Digitisation is no longer an edge; it’s a necessity. When your supply chain uses new technologies, the whole system becomes agile, efficient, and customer-focused. Complete integration, according to a report from the PwC network, allows transparency of all the key partners: from the road freight forwarders to the raw materials suppliers and the consumers.
The effect is a better response to disruptions in the chain, not only as they happen, but even before they occur.
What sort of technologies could your business use?
- Software for data analysis and predictive analytics
- Cloud computing – to allow for flexibility and global reach without costly on-premise infrastructure
- Robotic automation – this may cover drones and driverless vehicles for logistics
- AI and algorithm planning – to eliminate human errors, creating a more efficient process; and identify patterns to predict a surge in demand and to manage inventory
- IoT – for warehouses and outlets to enhance predictive maintenance and inventory management
Innovative systems enable your business to improve its visibility on the entire supply chain ecosystem. It also gives you the capability to plan using data and forecasting models. It will ensure the security of your operations.
Prioritising Information Security
Blockchain encryption is becoming a viable solution to two critical things in the supply chain: information integration across all partners and data protection. Blockchain allows businesses to use one platform for invoicing and payments, among others. It streamlines the entire process, alerting supply chain managers of issues before they happen. The technology’s decentralization method also protects data from being edited, making entries incorruptible and permanent.
The technology is still in its infancy for the supply chain industry, so businesses may need to integrate it with other systems to achieve desired results. That includes optimising search, which may be necessary during product recalls, and determining chain-of-custody for a serialised unit.
But the future for supply chain management isn’t all about technology; it also seeks sustainability.
Implementing Green Logistics
Sustainability efforts are essential to business plans because they ensure compliance with policies on transport decarbonisation. The EU aims for a significant reduction in its CO2 emissions by 2050. And the supply chain industry is obliged to follow the standards involved in such a goal. In addition, your efforts to reduce emissions will attract eco-conscious consumers, improving your brand and bottom line.
How do you do it then?
- Switch from plastic to cardboard packaging
- Ensure energy efficiency at every stage of the supply chain ecosystem
- Adopt clean energy where possible to reduce your company’s overall carbon footprint
Innovative supply chain management ensures your business thrives and secures your future, no matter what happens in the world. Look into industry trends, and determine which new thing will work for your operations.