Tech integration crucial to maintain resiliency of supply chain operations


Authored by – Anish Popli, Founder and CEO, ProcMart

On the cusp of increasing globalization, increased product complexity, and constantly shifting consumer needs, businesses are leveraging a sophisticated suite of supply chain technologies to drive further innovation in their business practices. Over the years, supply chains have developed into complex networks spread globally with multiple stakeholders giving rise to many bottlenecks that waste time, energy, and costs. This is where technology can function as a game-changer for supply chain optimization. This blog will highlight the importance of tech integration in modern supply chains and explore how modern tech solutions transform supply chain management.

Importance of Tech Integration in Modern Supply Chains — Overview

Integrating technology in modern supply chains enhances efficiency, transparency, and agility. It enables real-time data tracking, optimized resource management, and improved decision-making that help companies better deal with problems such as material and labor shortages, increasing freight costs, and limitations in demand forecasting. In summary, integrating technology in modern-day supply chain businesses can help them quickly adapt to market changes, mitigate risks, and achieve sustainable growth, ensuring competitive advantage in a dynamic global marketplace.

What are the Different Types of Technologies Empowering Modern-Day Supply Chain Optimization?

Technology is a powerful tool enabling modern supply chain managers to manage and optimize vast and complicated supply chains.

Below is a list of some of the most important digital tools used in supply chains. 

  1. Transportation: More and more commodities are being transported inside the supply chain using automated guided vehicles (AGV), automated forklifts, and drones.
  2. Tracking: WLAN, GPS, RFID, and GIS are some of the tracking technologies being used for tracking in modern supply chains
  3. Robots: Robots that carry out their tasks autonomously are presently being employed in various supply chains, including picking, sorting, and packing.
  4. Supply Chain Management Software: Here are some of the software programs being used in supply chain networks:
  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software: To link supply chain operations with other organizational functions.
  • Warehouse Management Software (WMS): To oversee all aspects of your supply chain’s warehouse operations.
  • Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) software: To oversee warehouse upkeep and equipment maintenance in the supply chain.
  • Manufacturing Execution System (MES) software: To monitor, document, and manage all manufacturing operations.
  1. Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI in supply chains is useful for extracting insightful analyses from huge volumes of supply chain data. A few applications of AI in supply chains include planning for demand, production scheduling, route, packaging, and cost optimization, etc.
  2. Internet-of-Things (IoT) Devices: IoT deployments can support manufacturing operations, monitor production assets, and manage freight fleets.

Moreover, it can combine use cases with AI to optimize aspects like last-mile deliveries when weather or traffic conditions might present a bottleneck.

  1. Blockchain: Owing to its immutability, blockchain can be instrumental in establishing an audit trail. It is ideal for monitoring the provenance of items and building confidence in supplier data and supply chain procedures. Blockchain tech can help identify fraudulent activity and counterfeit goods, ensure legal requirements are fulfilled, and increase transparency regarding the origin and flow of goods.

Benefits of Tech Integration in Modern Supply Chains

Here are the top benefits of integrating technology into modern supply chains:

  • Greater Visibility: Many supply chain software help in the centralization of information. From manufacturing to procurement, assembly, and last-mile delivery, increased visibility can lead to more accurate forecasting and improved business decision-making.
  • Lower Error Rates: Numerous technological tools have been shown to lower human mistakes and help with process automation. For instance, the error rate for robots in warehousing and packaging is nearly nil compared to workers (usually between 1% and 3%). Lower error rates mean less revenue lost due to mismanaged or lost items.
  • Increased Flexibility: Organizations can adapt more quickly to changing market situations, thanks to technology. This makes it easier for your business to help grow its market share, revenue, and profitability.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Technology solutions, especially software, typically have a low cost of implementation. With technological improvements, competition, and large-scale adoption, hardware solutions are also becoming cheaper.
  • Quick Learning Curve: Software tech solutions built for the supply chain industry can be implemented with little to no coding. Compared to analog and manual operations procedures, which need to be set up and carried out with great skill, these software can optimize supply chain operations quickly.
  • Leveraging Technology For Supply Chain Modernization

Every technological development, from artificial intelligence to data analytics, the Internet of Things, and more, makes the supply chain more effective, quicker, and sustainable. Businesses can use this advantage to gain a competitive edge, enhance customer satisfaction, and confidently navigate the complexity of the modern global marketplace. As we at Procmart believe, “We can be sure that ongoing technological innovation will continue influencing supply chain management’s next frontier, opening up new opportunities and promoting sustainable growth.”