By BCI
Bar Code India

Customers appreciate transparency

Gone are the days when customers would only look at the features of the products inthe market. With time the demand in transparency of the source of a product, the process of manufacturing, packaging and so forthhas increased. Customers these days want to have a visibility of the whole supply chain of the product,from the source to the delivery. Whether the product is developed as per guided/standard norms, is it ethically sourced, are all the qualitative aspects taken into consideration andeven the environmental impact, they keep a check on every detail. (their decisions are influenced by all these factors)

With such rising demands and being a part of the global competition, businesses have to ensure a supply chain visibility and traceability at every point in time.

This visibility and traceability in the business is brought by digitization of supply chains.

Recording and maintaining Data is the KEY

Data plays a very vital role in such a situation. The flow of information can be used to sort a lot of complex issues. The businesses now have to shake hands with exponential technologies to get such robust information systems intertwined with their supply chainsso as to effectively capture data at each stage, ensuring a smooth flow of processes and better engagement with the customers.

The entire flow of information should cover not only the origination, processes, materials, methods, man, machine but also customers, suppliers, vendors, market and competitors behaviour.

There are unseen dependencies on information captured at various stages in the whole process, neglecting any such dependency could cause significant impact to the business. For example, if a set of data that is needed for assembling a product is not captured or is captured incorrectly, the magnitude of the impact could be much higher than that of addressing the issue of data capturing at source.

In today’s world, businesses do not produce only products but also an information system, data capturing systems which are as vital as products themselves and in times to come can actually surpass the value of products too.

Any business/ organization that wants to have a competitive advantage over others should focus on improving the efficacies of the information flow in the processes and apply right methodology to structure the data, analyse the data and use it to its highest potential to derive insights.

This will help the business in reducing costs, managing inventory, forecasting unforeseen circumstances, and forecasting demand, detecting any divergence in the process and planning strategically.

How you can digitize your Supply Chain

Although an array of technologies exist today, it has become imperative for all supply chain leaders to weigh the pros and cons in selecting the most appropriate technology or combination of technologies to digitally transform their systems. Technology trendslike mobility, cloud platforms, Internet of Things, Big data and Artificial Intelligence have become the need of the hour.

Investing in mobility helps in bridging the gap between the business warehouse and the customer. From streamlining the whole distribution and logistics process, real time tracking of vehicles / trucks and materials to finding easiest and fastest route to the desired destination, mobility acts as a key to any business growth. Introduction of Big data and IOT to mobility is yet another game changer for supply chains across industries.

Supply chains across verticals have to be analytical and data driven to achieve better margins, mitigate risks and provide error free faster deliveries to the end customer.

Big data analytics is nothing but utilizing information and analysing it (through descriptive analysis– learning from past and predictive analysis- analysis based on analysing trends using simulation techniques)from all the process flows in the system and using it to reduce operational, storage costs and optimise utilization of resources, thus helping the business to be sustainable in a global market.

IOT with Big Data helps business in quicker decision making, mitigating risks and delays, providing accuracy and increased efficiency.

Digital transformation of supply chains is a must and should be initiated with great thought, taking into consideration the overall objective of one’s business, their budget, their readiness to adapt and integrate technology to the current system and the overall global competitive market. The time is NOW!

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