The need for supply chain transparency and openness is growing more pressing by the day. It may make a major impact, especially as the e-commerce market grows. And independent merchants are forced to rely on third-party logistics providers.
End-to-end visibility into supply chain operations may seem like a simple aim to attain. Because of the abundance of data, you may get from the supply chain. Most firms, however, have difficulty collecting the correct data and then using it to get useful insights.
When it comes to adopting supply chain visibility, the challenges are endless. We’ve outlined the four most prevalent difficulties that hinder complete visibility and how to fix them.
List of Chapters
- An Obsession with the Smaller Elements of the Chain.
- Deficiencies in the Stream of Data
- The Effort Put Into Manual Tasks
- Intuitive Analytical Dashboards
- Defeating Difficulty
- An Obsession with the Smaller Elements of the Chain.
It’s not uncommon for supply chains to be extensive and complex. In order to complete tasks, each stakeholder must work with an upstream and downstream partner. Everyone in the supply chain relies on the data generated by these stakeholders. However, most organizations choose to focus exclusively on their own segment. The supply chain or simply on their downstream or upstream partners.
As an example, a manufacturer may focus on the data provided by their logistics partner. And their own inventory management. A manufacturer’s production schedules may be less efficient if they don’t consider the manufacturing and logistical data provided by suppliers. A lack of preparation is a major factor in this concentration in the near term.
As a result, many supply chain stakeholders are unable to communicate effectively due to outdated software platforms. Because they are unable to communicate or integrate these systems, they must rely on human data uploads and transfers in order to be visible.
Many supply chain companies are naturally wary of doing manual operations because of the rapid growth of data. While this isn’t a solution, it isn’t the only one either. Automate and modernize your IT infrastructure so that systems can communicate with one other.
The standardization of data storage and processing processes may be achieved. By linking systems in this manner is an additional benefit.
Deficiencies in the Stream of Data
Having a broken supply chain is even more problematic than simply lacking information. All context has been removed from the data sets. There may be complications with fresh items being delivered, for example, by a logistics service provider. It is likely that their data will reveal that items were damaged in transit.
How would the logistics provider fare? The manufacturer had poor storage conditions, to begin with? It’s impossible to investigate these challenges without a network of interconnected systems and data. Liability, higher insurance costs, and a tarnished image are all on the line for logistics companies.
Deep data analysis is hindered by data silos linked to outdated systems, which might decrease inefficiencies and enhance margins. This time, it’s the old infrastructure again that’s to a fault. The result is a situation in which neither system has any control over the other. Since so many people are involved in the decision-making process.
In order to avoid relying on systems like these, companies should invest in and modernize their technology stacks by removing data silos and improving demand models throughout the whole supply chain. Modern infrastructure will allow them to focus on the right parts of their supply chains better.
The Effort Put Into Manual Tasks
Modern technology is in direct conflict with manual procedures. The majority of supply chain data management operations.
In this sense, there are two key concerns to be addressed. The first step is to ensure that all stakeholders have access to a single source of truth. A culture of data-driven decision-making is built when systems are integrated. Stakeholder support is essential for complicated processes like those that underlie the supply chain.
As a second step, stakeholders should integrate and automate the transmission of data from their upstream and downstream partner organizations. Since workers are unable to go through millions of rows of data looking for duplicates and missing commas, the ETL process must be automated. Infrastructure upgrades are essential. Since the amount of data that corporations collect isn’t going to go down any time soon.
Proactive maintenance, storage threshold alarms, and risk mitigation may all benefit from automation. When a process is in danger, you may reduce or even eliminate losses by contacting the appropriate individuals.
As a bonus, you’ll also be able to increase your data analytics.
Intuitive Analytical Dashboards
The capacity to swiftly assess data is just as important as the ability to gather it. Most supply chain firms’ analytics dashboards are difficult for non-technical employees. To understand and need a high level of technical skill to run.
Suppose you’re using outdated analytics software. You’ll need tech help for every ad-hoc analysis since you’ll need to write code to retrieve data.
It’s time for supply chain stakeholders to join the self-service analytics revolution. When it comes to sifting through data, firms may pull insights from practically anywhere in their company without the requirement for technical skills.
Visualizing data has never been easier, thanks to the straightforward graphic dashboards. That is included in many modern analytics products. Other than graphs and photos, you may experiment with and see the effects in real-time by manipulating the data you have available. Conclusions and situations may be presented in this manner with ease.
Adopting data-driven insights to enhance transparency has its own set of hurdles, as do any trends. Technology is the key to unlocking new knowledge. Make sure you allocate resources to addressing the concerns outlined in this article since they are crucial to your success. The payoff is improved visibility into every step of the supply chain, as well as a reduction in waste.