Supply chains must evolve with consumer demands. This has always been true for every industry. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced businesses into a heightened state of preparedness.
Businesses and supply chains were not prepared for an event of this magnitude, and quick adaptation was crucial. Although a number of businesses were able to quickly pivot their operations in favor of e-commerce and rapid delivery, the changes didn’t come without growing pains. As the dust settles, companies are seeking out new ways to stay ahead of potential future disruptions.
Creating supply chain transparency is essential for adapting to sudden changes in the market and for building more resilient operations.
Difference Between Visibility and Transparency
When you have high “visibility” in your operations, your team members can access specific data within its own silo.
But when you have “transparency”, data is available to everyone at any point in the supply chain. Transparency opens up all touch points within the supply chain, along with current and anticipated inventory, to your team, your partners, and your customers.
Visibility is Good but Transparency is Key
Your supply chain has achieved transparency when anyone in your organization, at any level and on any task, is able to keep track of any component, at any point in time. Whether your shipment is sitting in the warehouse, ready to pack, or is in transit to its final destination, members of your team should be able to access data about those transactions. In addition to your team members, customers at the receiving end should also be able to see tracking information regarding their orders.
Transparency Leads to Higher Productivity and Improved Reputation
Transparency is the key to higher productivity, lower operational costs, and a better reputation with consumers–both in the short and long term. It’s key to making the supply chain less unpredictable and easier to forecast with a higher level of accuracy. With transparency in place, your team is better equipped to predict potential changes and prepare for them, whether they’re gradual or sudden.
Transparency Through Technology
New technology is paramount to establishing transparency. Using a network of connected automation systems, robotics, AR and other emerging tech used in conjunction with a Warehouse Management System (WMS), provides immediate and accurate access to data for warehouse personnel, delivery drivers, customers, and more. And the historical data that is collected from a connected system is crucial to provide the right kind of insight teams need to strategize for increased consumer demand and possible future disruptions.
Most automated systems and robotics applications software merge seamlessly within current WMS – and training time is drastically reduced for personnel due to making processes simpler and easier to perform. This makes for a smooth transition for most companies.
Resiliency Through Transparency
Because transparency allows you to send data back and forth anywhere in your supply chain operation, it increases your company’s inherent value. When you have all data at your fingertips, you have the power to make faster, more decisive decisions for greater productivity, efficiency, and reliability.
In the face of supply chain interruption, you will rise to the challenge ahead of your competition. Your team has the ability to make quick changes with less potential disruption to your processes. Resulting in a more satisfied team, logistics partners, and customers.
Advanced supply chain technology is available to future minded organizations looking to maximize their growth potential. It’s clear that those who are able to harness this technology can make the next great leap in innovation and transparency.
IndPro Services can help you make that next leap through some simple steps. Contact our procurement and solutions specialists to discuss your potential.
IndPro Services, a leader in U.S. Federal Government and commercial systems procurement, provides efficient, innovative, and results-driven solutions. Dedicated to improving efficiency in warehouse and distribution center operations, we work on the same side of the table with you to help you procure the best possible solution for your specific application.