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Factors impacting the future of Supply Chain and Logistics

The evolving supply chain processes are being enhanced by technology-driven automation. While reducing the operating costs, the aim of such smart technology-driven solutions is to increase efficiency and drive unprecedented results.


Owing to the globalisation and the growing difficulties in delivering large volumes of goods and services, the supply chain process also saw a rapid transformation. Businesses that managed to have an efficient supply chain system in terms of quality raw materials, manufacturing process, transport and tracking as well as inventory, gained a formidable reputation that translated into customer loyalty which further enhanced both topline as well as bottomline.


With this, it is important to take into consideration the various factors that can impact the supply chain processes now and in the future.


Digitisation

Redesign of logistics in relation to latest technological solutions, and physical and digital assets of the business. Digitisation can further catalyse the processes of supply chain which can help increase customer satisfaction, thus contributing to more revenue. With digitisation, businesses can enhance market valuation as well.

With Internet of Things (IoT), technologies are constantly evolving. IoT would indeed enable monitoring of warehouse stock, inventory, reduce dead mileage and optimise fleet routes.


Collaboration

Supply chain process should consider stronger relationships with suppliers and stronger procurement practices. For example, the business data on suppliers can be used to enhance supply chain decisions like best business partner recommendations and supplier evaluation. Risks can be assessed based on the political and global climate. This can help prevent stock shortages. Collaboration can also help reduce over-utilisation of resources and streamline internal processes. Satisfied business partners may generate referrals.


Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Especially in the warehousing segment, advanced AI applications have numerous benefits like gesture recognition. You can also manage optimum stock levels, inventory, stocking and retrievals using ML as a subset of AI. Using data gathered from sensors, it notices patterns and suggests actions such as faster replenishment of nearly out-of-stock items, shorter walking routes, and better inventory positioning.

There are also self-driving vehicles designed to operate without human skills.


Emphasis on increased supply chain resiliency and risk management

Risk management in supply chain can help businesses to prepare before any untoward happenings. Off-shoring, outsourcing practices, product versatility and supply chain security further the need for risk management. Resiliency in supply chain helps businesses to survive disruptive happenings.


Visibility

Visibility across the supply chain can spontaneously detect disruptive happenings on time and with close collaboration and support of suppliers, alternatives can be put in place.


Knowledge travels global

Knowledge work including analytics and procurement processing should be on the global path with global businesses.


Reverse logistics

Unlike linear supply, in circular supply, previously used products can be new raw materials in a process known as reverse logistics.


Wearable technologies

Employees can access and input data in real time using cloud-based wearable devices. This also enables businesses to stay up-to-date with product demand and maintain control of their inventories.


SaaS

Software as a service model helps businesses to avoid infrastructure maintenance and costs related to upgrades.


Segmentation

Customers should be grouped on the basis of purchasing decisions which helps them to cater to specific customer preferences and increase their revenue.


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