Supply chain may be increasingly reliant upon big data and networks

on Monday, December 24, 2012

Supply chain may be increasingly reliant upon big data and networksWith many enterprises looking to implement business cost reduction strategies and increase efficiency, more companies are looking to the web to provide potential supply chain solutions. In the search for both these elements, some businesses are turning to big data and supply chain network information that is accessible via the web. In the coming year, it is possible more firms will turn to such technology to ensure their supply chains are as effective as possible.

Many companies are turning to risk aversion tactics such as web supply chain models or "3-D" supply chains, platforms that share data with various enterprises via the web. These IT-based networks allow enterprises to ensure top efficiency and with an internet-based hub of information and better track their global operations. Others are beginning to use big data to more effectively track, organize and analyze their company information to increase productivity and profitability.

Benefits of supply chain optimization through new systems
Keeping all procurement, manufacturing and logistical information in one place can make it simple for companies to easily access information in the event of a disaster and determine how and where their supply chains will be affected. This can allow a business to better recover from an unexpected disaster and ensure it gets back on track in a timely fashion. It can determine for what length of time its suppliers or logistical operations will be impacted, allowing an enterprise to determine which alternative procurement or shipping alternatives will be most effective and allow for the greatest cost savings.

Even without disastrous occurrences, a business can still benefit from the use of big data or web-based models of its supply chain. Having all of this vital information in one place can allow a company to determine how its strategic sourcing policies are working and how it can better them to further reduce costs. It can also be useful in the logistical process as companies attempt to determine which shipping methods are the quickest and most cost effective.

Having an established platform that tracks all shipments and purchasing also can help companies and their suppliers work better together, establish stronger relationships and ensure their supply chains run smoothly. This can also cause companies to develop stronger or beneficial relationships with their top competitors if they use any of the same suppliers or producers, relationships which can be beneficial to both parties.

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