We live in a very volatile economy right now. Industries don’t know whether the roadmap generating immense revenue for the current quarter will also be fruitful for the coming year. Such unpredictability, more so in the age of e-commerce, where customer retention is becoming as challenging as ever, poses many operational hiccups for the leadership of a supply chain organization. To tackle such unknown territories, SCM employs value chain resilience methods that guard an enterprise from disruptions hampering its bottom-line revenue.
This generally involves identifying red flags early (be they from internal or external factors), diversifying sourcing practices, improving inventory management, and investing in technology that provides end-to-end visibility and agility in supply chain operations. From a technology point of view, embracing artificial intelligence, IoT, and blockchain has led to transformational changes in operations that are devoid of any siloed approach akin to age-old traditional value chain methods.
If we focus on AI’s role in supply chain resilience, the management now has access to algorithms through intelligent platforms that analyze supply chain data to identify patterns, predict potential disruptions, and optimize inventory management along with more competent resource management. In tandem with an AI-powered approach, supply chain leadership can also automate demand forecasting, risk assessment, and supply chain planning, allowing businesses to be proactive to changing market conditions and disruptions. The marquee tech enables all of the above but, most importantly, provides crucial foresight that helps an organization achieve its end objective of scalability, efficiency, and, more importantly, placing itself as an all-season supply chain.
Adding more purpose to the cause are IoT and blockchain technology. IoT devices have bolstered the visibility factor by catalyzing a structure that enables a continuous feed of live data from products, warehouses, and vehicles. This helps SCM keep a tab on the current state of transit in movement and allows stakeholders to be up to date with any potential bottlenecks that may appear during a product’s life cycle.
Blockchain, for its part, has enabled a framework that allows stakeholders to exercise more authority by providing digitization for every supply chain process with comprehensive visibility. By introducing a ledger system that stays uncorrupted throughout the movement of goods, blockchain ensures the complete authenticity of the data processed at every stage of the supply chain. Thus solidifying the utmost data integrity and security to run analytics algorithms for accurate insights into a company’s value chain. All three pillars contribute immensely to upgrading metrics of collaboration, visibility, authenticity, security, and, most importantly, contributing towards building a supply chain framework that is robust, scalable, and eventually a crucial contributor to an organization’s revenue goals.
The author is a Co-Founder and Director, 3SC Solutions.