8 Industry Experts Share Current And Emerging Tech Solutions For Supply Chain Management
Starting with market disruptions from the pandemic and rippling out from there, supply chain shortfalls have been causing problems across the globe. In recent months, consumers and businesses alike have been frustrated by low inventories, delayed orders and empty shelves. The widespread issues have exposed outdated practices and tools in the transportation and logistics industry.
Fortunately, current and emerging tech developments may hold the key to solving many supply chain issues, including tracking inventories, monitoring shipments and even replicating products. Here, eight members of Forbes Technology Council share tech solutions they think will make a real impact on improving supply chain management.
1. Smart Supply Chains
Smart supply chains—powered by the Internet of Things, mobile private networks and 5G—allow businesses to automatically reschedule and reroute shipments in response to a delay while simultaneously updating customers with new delivery information. These technology solutions leverage customer demand data to continually update forecasts and plans, sharing that information with suppliers so everyone is in the loop. – David Joosten, Vodafone
2. Supply Chain Visibility Tech
Supply chain visibility technology can optimize shipment logistics while reducing the risk of lost, stolen or damaged cargo in transit. Unifying data insights from tractors, trailers and cargo using cloud and edge computing technology allows companies to track inventory, maximize trailer usage and view insights on asset movement to expedite the flow of goods from the manufacturer to the consumer. – Jeff Gardner, CalAmp
3. Predictive Maintenance Tech
Transportation and logistics enterprises should be looking at predictive maintenance technology. By utilizing this software, organizations can reduce their downtime by proactively identifying equipment repairs. This also helps companies move toward a scheduled maintenance program versus engaging in reactive maintenance and reduce their carbon footprint, and it encourages a safe, quality environment for employees. – Daragh Mahon, Werner Enterprises
4. Edge Computing
Edge computing allows organizations to acquire data across the supply chain, analyze it and act on it in near real time. In the industrial sector, this is essential for automation applications such as predictive maintenance and remote condition monitoring. In addition to greater resiliency, processing data close to where it’s generated unlocks flexibility, enabling a quick response to anything unexpected. – Christine Boles, Intel
5. 3D Printing
As consumer demand spikes and supply chain constraints show no sign of slowing, emerging technologies such as 3D printing will play a role in easing shortages and mitigating widespread disruption. 3D printing technologies can not only help fill gaps in traditional supply chains but also provide long-term, scalable solutions across industries to meet new pandemic-driven consumer needs. – Jeff Wong, EY
6. Digital Twins
More companies need to be leveraging strategic digital twin technologies to solve the ongoing issues of bottlenecks and shortages in the supply chain. Companies utilizing the digital twins approach with business insights and industry best practices spot supply chain anomalies and disruptions proactively, improving planning and management across the end-to-end supply chain. – Nicola Morini Bianzino, EY
7. Real-Time Shipping Status Software
To keep their supply chains running smoothly, companies need vastly more granular, real-time information about the flow of shipments—where they are, why they are delayed and what can be done about it. New software technology is coming online that can track an individual shipment among millions, instantly update its status and immediately notify logistics managers when problems arise. – William Bain, ScaleOut Software, Inc.
Blockchain technology is likely to make real improvements in supply chain management. Distributed ledger technology can bring transparency and visibility to supply chains by improving the security and traceability of products. The technology generates an immutable transaction record, making it possible to track good provenance and cultivate trust through shared supply chain information. – Roman Taranov, Ruby Labs
Source : forbes.com