Supply Chain Visibility Improvement
The risk of waste is more significant than ever as supply chains get longer and more complicated. According to research conducted in 2021 by RTS, a commercial recycling and waste management organisation, around 30-40% of food produced by farmers will never consume.
One of the leading causes for this is the prevalence of waste across the supply chain, which results in considerable blind spots even in the most advanced and vigilant tracking systems. Because stakeholders obtain a whole perspective of possible bottlenecks, increasing visibility is the most excellent strategy to combat product loss.
Most firms instantly identify inventory management as a weak link in their supply chains when performing supply chain evaluations. It, however, may not apply to all businesses. If you want to figure out what’s preventing visibility, you’ll need to involve every stakeholder in internal reviews.
Inventory management, for example, maybe an issue, but the real problem may be a lack of technology that allows you to monitor and respond to storage condition violations, following the identification of weak links.
Internal workflows, not technology, are frequently the source of the problem. Unnecessary paperwork or procedure stages could jeopardise the quality of your cargo. Before building a process workflow, figure out what you want to accomplish.
Companies must reassess the technology they rely on as the demand for visibility in supply chain logistics develops. The foundations of a transparent supply chain are tracking systems. While analytics packages aid in identifying patterns and creating efficient delivery routes, they rely on data from data loggers attached to shipments.
You can optimise and establish more efficient procedures by tracking every step of your supply chain management. Monitoring the condition-related information of your on-site inventory, for example, can assist you to detect any inventory management blind spots.
When pinpointing the cause of damage, tracking is beneficial. Was a tainted product conveyed, or was the damage caused by faulty storage on the part of the shipper? The answers to these questions have important insurance implications, and the only way to avoid problems is to keep track of them.
Data tracking also allows you to get a complete picture of your suppliers’ and shipping vendors’ performance. Some vendors may perform better at various seasons of the year, while others may have infrastructure that is better suited to specific items. Please make a product map of your providers’ offerings and assign a score to them.
This way, you’ll always know who to contact when a new order arrives, based on the order’s specifications.
Many logistics companies maintain their vendors at arm’s length and regard them entirely interchangeable. There’s no denying that the shipping industry is competitive, with many service providers offering low prices.
However, picking a provider based on price isn’t always a good idea. Getting your vendors on board with processes will assist you in identifying the problems they’re having. For example, regardless of the shipper’s infrastructure, the route you choose to convey products may not be conducive to maintaining product integrity.
Alternatively, your data may be out of date, and the shipper, having navigated the area frequently, will have a greater understanding of local conditions. Considering these factors and conveying your new process goals will assist you.
Throughout the supply chain, data will collect regularly. On the other hand, making sense of data is easier said than done. Most businesses have been hesitant to engage in analytical expertise that can assist them in cleaning, preparing, and analysing the massive volumes of data they acquire.
Some logistics companies have resorted to artificial intelligence (AI) to improve their processes. However, AI isn’t yet at the point where it can fully automate the procedure. These algorithms will need to be trained, where a data analyst or scientist may help.
These individuals will assist you in avoiding biases in your analysis approaches and developing robust models that automate procedures. As a result, there is less clerical work, and more value will create.
Employing data science expertise will necessitate a shift in your company’s culture. The investment, however, will be well worth it.
Increasing supply chain visibility is a collaborative and iterative effort. You must constantly monitor your data and strive to improve your thresholds.
Storage and environmental conditions are constantly changing. Staying on top of these trends requires constant improvement.
Create regular data reviews and automate reporting. Determine new KPIs that will allow you to measure your efficiency more effectively.
Maintain your collaboration efforts with your vendors during this process.
Increasing the visibility and transparency of your supply chain requires a different mindset than in the past.
Consider your supply chain as a network rather than a collection of individual elements. This mindset will assist you in creating better processes that will delight your clients while also increasing your profits.
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