Supply Chain Management is a key factor to business success. It has always been important but with the growing trend towards instant gratification and the fierce competition in the industry, services have adapted and evolved rapidly. It is essential to understand the supply chain trends in order to remain relevant and competitive in this market. 

Omni-channel marketing, big data, AI, Internet of Things (IoT), and other technologies have been a game-changer. Those that have failed to respond and harness these and other new technologies are facing a struggle. 

Supply chain trends have changed and they will continue to evolve. The market is dynamic and only the fittest will prosper. If companies and their partners do not adapt and innovate they will simply be left behind. 

Challenges in Supply Chain Management

Supply chain trends are changing and there are multiple challenges facing the industry. 

  • Increased complexity: The supply chain now has to deal with multiple platforms, vendors, and markets. This puts pressure on them to deliver consistent quality service. 
  • Logistics: It used to be a relativity simple process but with the proliferation of platforms and vendors as well as international markets, it has become highly complex. This requires a lot more skills and expertise than it did in the past. 
  • The expectation of speed and quality service: Customers are no longer complacent and have a low tolerance for slow or poor service. Social media and other platforms give them an opportunity to vent their frustration and disappointment. This makes speed and quality service critical to success. 
  • Increased costs: Fuel and other transport-related costs, labour, and raw materials have all see a dramatic price increase in recent years. The complexity of modern logistics also adds to the cost. 
  • Higher consumer expectations: Clients are no longer complacent and expect fast and perfect delivery every time. This puts pressure on logistics companies to maintain impeccable standards and great speed. When things go wrong, there is often immediate and intense public feedback. 
  • Higher risks: Factors such as politics, medical issues stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, shifting consumer demands, and international changes all increase the risk involved in modern supply change management. 

Emerging Trends in Supply Chain Management 

Here are the supply chain trends you need to be aware of:

  • Cloud-based solutions: The “cloud” has been a buzzword for many years but for a very good reason. Software as a Service (SaaS) has become an integral element of Supply Chain Management and operating on the cloud is a fantastic solution. 

These solutions allow supply chain management companies to leverage other technologies.

  • Digitization and Big Data: Following on from the above trend, the supply chain has become digital and Big Data is an integral factor. Harnessing the power of data is one of the key success factors. IoT, Big Data, AI, machine learning, and other technologies are essential for effective and competitive business. Quality digitization and data management will allow logistics companies to operate with greater efficiency and reduced cost. It also helps to track and predict changes that could potentially disrupt the process. 
  • Automation and robotics: Another technology that has become one of the main supply chain trends is the use of robotics. This allows for the automation of multiple processes and improves speed, accuracy, and efficiency. It is a developing technology and it is important to find the ideal solution for your environment. When implemented correctly, it will allow the logistics company to be more agile and responsive. While it can be a sizable investment it will pay dividends in the future. It can reduce ever-increasing labour costs while improving speed and accuracy. All of this is essential to the success of the logistics business. 
  • Omnichannel operations are the new normal: Customer behaviour and expectations are forcing companies to offer an omnichannel experience. This increases the complexity of the logistics. 
  • Sustainability is important: Both the consumer as well as governments are insisting that companies operate in a responsible, eco-friendly, and sustainable fashion. One has to adapt according to this growing trend. It impacts all areas of the logistics process from packaging to delivery. 
  • Scalability and agility are essential: Trends, markets, and consumer habits shift often and rapidly. The modern logistics company needs to be able to respond to these changes with great speed and efficiency. Dramatic changes can and do happen often and logistics companies need to be extremely agile and flexible in order to remain competitive. 

Partner With the Right People

While supply chain trends can be disruptive they offer opportunities to enhance and improve the business. The key is to work with the right people. One company that can help to get you where you need to be is Brokerlii. They understand the ever-changing supply chain trends and deliver results. They focus on strong relationships in order to help you improve your value offering. They have the resources, skills, and expertise to get you on track and you are sure to see a good ROI. Contact Brokerlii if great results are what you and your business are looking for.