Most businesses today rely on their supply chains to keep operations running. Issues in the supply chain directly impact their ability to deliver on their word to their customers. That’s why effective supply chain management is necessary to ensure the on-time delivery of products, clarity of inventory counts, real-time data updates, and more. Here are the current supply chain management trends of 2020 and what you can do to get up to date.
Supply Chains Are Going Green
As advocacy groups fight for climate change and consumers gain more knowledge about the importance of being environmentally responsible, many companies have improved their efforts to make their supply chains less harmful to the environment. Those that have been able to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions are appearing as better businesses among their competitors who are still behind. Since electricity use and transportation largely contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, green logistics are gaining traction.
Eco-friendly warehouses feature advanced energy management systems that help monitor and conserve the usage of electricity, heat, water, and gas. By preventing the excessive waste of resources, companies can reduce their overall carbon footprint.
Focus on Circular Supply Chains
As supply chains evolve, the linear model will eventually be replaced by a circular model. In a circular supply chain, manufacturers will refurbish discarded products for resale. This helps companies stay cost-effective with the rising cost of raw materials. Instead of spending more for new raw materials, companies can break down their returned or discarded products and use their raw materials to create new products.
This loop helps companies reduce costs and bypass the initial costs of putting new processes in motion. A circular supply chain can also help companies enjoy a reduced risk of rapid and negative price changes. They will produce less waste, which also helps them reduce their impact on the environment.
Adoption of AI and ML Technologies
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies are infiltrating the modern supply chain. AI uses algorithms that help computers behave more like humans to solve complicated problems. ML takes this a step further and allows the computer to improve and learn based on collected data and experience. Incorporating these technologies into your supply chain management can help you get better results. Take Amazon for example: They use AI to track the purchasing habits of their customers and uses collected information to recommend other products to them.
Focus on Automation
There are many forms of automation but to put it plainly, it incorporates simple use technology to manage workflow and improve processes. Some forms of automation include robots or sophisticated conveyor systems in warehouses that eliminate the risk of human error and can run efficiently on their own.
Emphasis of Security
As technology advances, attacks on information technology systems and software increases as well. Even large companies are not immune to massive security breaches, as their systems are relentlessly being threatened. There are a wide range of cyber security attacks that could affect your online information, which is why it is vital to emphasize security going forward. There are many security solutions available that can help protect you from unauthorized hacks and data breaches. As supply chains rely on the digital world to share information, the risks increase but so do the opportunities to protect your systems.
More companies are learning how valuable transparency is to their customers. Consumers are concerned about the impact of modern businesses on society and the environment, which means companies need to improve their operations to reduce any negative impact and be transparent with their customers. Eventually, companies may have to provide reports on the impact their supply chains have on jobs created, sourcing practices, labour, and modes of transportation used. Disclosing these aspects of the supply chain can help companies improve their brand image among their consumers and be prepared if there are any regulatory requirements that arise.
How Lean Supply Solutions Can Help You
As you can see, the supply chain is changing a lot. The expectations of today’s consumers and the competition from businesses who are already moving forward with technology and software are increasing the urgency for every business to get up to par. All these changes may seem overwhelming, especially for a new business; however, with the assistance and resources of a third-party logistics (3PL) provider you can quickly get up to speed.
There are providers that already have automation, AI, cloud-based solutions, security and green initiatives in place. All you need to do is team up with them and let them handle your warehousing. Looking for the right company to partner with? Look no further.
Lean Supply Solutions provides effective supply chain management and is current on the trends mentioned above. We commit to being aware of our clients’ operational challenges and help them get the most out of their processes through our exceptional services. We can offer consistent, accurate, and quality results by ensuring that the right products are provided to the right customers at the right time, while saving you money. We can also help you track and understand your metrics better. Our services include warehouse pick and pack, contract logistics, manufacturing support, technology, warehousing distribution services, e-commerce fulfillment, consulting, and more.
To learn more about our warehouse value-added services or to ask any questions, contact us today.