Understanding the digital supply chain’s future is critical to success. Big Data, the Internet of Things, blockchain technology, predictive analytics, and the growing dissatisfaction that these technologies bring to the sector must all be embraced.
Let’s take a closer look at how these technologies will impact supply chain management in the future, as well as your day-to-day operations.
The Internet of Things (IoT) allows devices to communicate with one another, and Big Data analytics gives supply chain executives access to granular data. It’s impossible to avoid the digital supply chain’s future.
In the modern world, around 1.7 MB of fresh information is created per minute per individual.
According to the book “Digital Supply Chain: It’s All About the Data,” the future of the digital supply chain is data-rich, yet increased data complexity hinders companies’ ability to obtain business insights.
As supply chains become more digitally connected, supply chain professionals are increasingly turning to emerging technologies, including big data analytics, the internet of things (IoT), and automation.
However, the implementation of these solutions is just one piece of the puzzle. 76% of respondents said their supply chain workers need new digital skills to remain competitive. As the number two challenge facing these leaders (following a lack of budget), a lack of skilled talent is the number one concern.
Yet, it isn’t easy to find talent like this. Soon, a supply chain employee must work collaboratively with other businesses and vendors, manipulate data and read dashboards, and lead others while having a detailed understanding of the supply chain’s components.
In today’s world, workers in these jobs will need to balance new digital skills and interpersonal abilities. Integrating new technology and optimized processes will fail to deliver full benefits without the right talent. Let’s explore supply chain leaders’ views to better understand the challenges we face.
What does an intelligent digital supply chain look like?
Real-time visibility into all aspects of supply chain management is necessary to create a successful digital supply chain. It is possible to make a connected ecosystem more visible and accessible by optimizing cloud computing.
A fully digital supply chain would also eliminate paper, manual entry, and data requests made through phone or email. Today, most supply chains use both analog and digital processes.
In a fully digitalized supply chain, manufacturing, transportation, and logistics processes could be managed using real-time tracking. Connecting customers and suppliers through end-to-end digital connectivity can enable the management and optimization of the most complex supply chains.
Assuming the leadership role
It would be best if you had a detailed plan in place for updating your supply chain for the digital era and equipping it with the right talents based on a solid understanding of business and workplace dynamics. When the status quo is challenged, you’re likely to encounter resistance.
As a means of overcoming obstacles and driving change, you can do the following:
- Celebrate risk-taking and learn from failure. Adverse outcomes are frowned upon by corporate cultures. However, the risk is not gained when little is risked. Instead of encouraging high growth or operational results, corporate supply chain leadership teams should encourage risk-taking to benefit long-term supply chain performance.
- Acquire an understanding of stakeholder needs. In addition to considering the needs of others, leaders should consider their goals and points of view. Ensure supply chains are aligned with business goals, encouraging innovation and transformation to ensure business success.
- Business needs should be incorporated into development programs. Demonstrate how workplace efforts contribute to business success by keeping the bottom line in mind when attaining buy-in.
- Pilot programs are the best option. Using a targeted rollout that can be easily expanded, you can find out what works – and what doesn’t.
People are the most challenging element to manage – and easily overlooked – in the trifecta of people, processes, and technology. The right technologies accompanied by the right strategies, but delivered by the wrong people with bad skills, can lead to disaster. In this digitally enabled era, your workforce should also be upgraded with new capabilities and new priorities.