Technology drives supply chain transformation
Given its significance and known benefits, many large enterprises have realigned their supply chain operations to better incorporate technology during the recent COVID-19 crisis. This adoption of digital solutions is designed to build resilience in the supply chains – an action stemming from shrinking margins, shutdowns, and a dented global economy.
Echoing the sentiment of companies who are fighting the pandemic and looking to stage a recovery, a recent report stated that 67.6% of supply chain professionals felt that investment in technology is key for survival in the long run.
Toward this end, enterprises are vying to recuperate their supply chains, and a critical step for them is to embrace the “the new normal.” This new normal underpins the adoption of technology in every single aspect of a supply chain operation – from increasing visibility within the network to ensuring safety, and inventory management.
The following are some of the key ways in which technology will help supply chains recuperate from the current COVID crisis:
1) Seamless Management of Remote Supply Chains
You can easily manage your vendors– down to individual workers at far off remote locations– with the help of a cloud-based worker management system. It not only simplifies employee level prequalification and training but also facilitates seamless communication between you and your suppliers.
With a cloud-based worker management solution, you can monitor the operations of your suppliers and contractors prior to bringing them on site. Unlike the manual paper-based approach where information may be weeks or months out of date, with a cloud mobile-based solution you can ensure a smooth flow of information from worksites to your operator and vice-versa.
Further you can require that all workers coming on site have completed your specific trainings. This might include trainings on industrial and employee hygiene during COVID-19.
2) Effective Supplier Documentation Management
If your organization is like most there is likely critical information trapped in data management systems across all multiple key markets. This information can be used to generate actionable insights and reports on supplier performance, their safety standards, crisis response mechanisms, and compliance.
By developing a cloud-based centralized data architecture, you can consolidate all the information into one common repository accessible to operators and workers across your locations. Integrating your centralized database with an analytics engine, allows you to identify suppliers associated with higher costs or superior functional efficiencies.
In addition, a central cloud-based data management system can be seamlessly integrated with your legacy system infrastructure with the help of application programming interfaces (APIs), providing data access to decision-makers anywhere anytime using a single unified system.
3) Supplier Evaluation and Onboarding
Another best practice is to integrate advanced analytics with a cloud-based mobile solution. This solution allows you to accurately gauge vendor capabilities and track data on vendor compliance from anywhere, anytime.
With the help of analytics, you can align unlimited attributes to supplier definitions and categorize the same into logical profile sections. Such extensive supplier profiles make it easier for you to quickly retrieve, process, and validate supplier information in no time.
With cloud vendor onboarding also becomes easier. A central database will account for supplier credentials like contracts, address, certificates of insurance (COI), banking details, business classification, etc. What’s more you can review your suppliers’ business continuity plans to ensure that they are still safe to work with during the pandemic.
A supplier will be able to create an independent profile on the central database, which can facilitate their thorough prequalification. Once suppliers pass the prequalification criteria, seamless onboarding of the suppliers can take place with ease and in the most transparent ways.
4) Increased Visibility
When prequalification is done in a robust manner you can feel confident your organization will have full visibility into your supply chain network. An integrated technology solution reduces the risks that come from unforeseen situations like the COVID-19 pandemic.