Why Businesses Should Use a Connected Supply Chain

Your supply chain can either make or break your business. It is the element that connects all other segments of your company, and ultimately brings your products and services to their end customer.

The challenges facing modern global supply chains have become incredibly transparent over the last couple of years. With countless moving parts in the system, providing customers with quality products and services efficiently and effectively (and at a competitive price) is no easy task.

If you are looking to find out more about connected supply chains and how their implementation can help you improve the efficiency of your business - you're in the right place. Read on as we explore what a connected supply chain means and what benefits it can offer your company.


What is a Connected Supply Chain?

A connected supply chain is one that has access to real-time data, accessed and organized from every segment. This provides insight into inventory levels, product availability, and customer demand. By having access to this information, organizations can optimize their production processes, reduce costs, and increase profits.

Developing an innovative supply chain strategy can help you outpace your competition with data-driven decisions that are based on objective information and indicators.

The primary benefit of connecting your supply chain is improving overall transparency and optimizing business decisions by leveraging the power of accurate data. If you don't already have a system in place that provides this level of insight, it's worth investing in. 

The Benefits of a Connected Supply Chain for Your Business

A connected supply chain can help you reduce costs, improve logistics processes, and increase market share. It can also help you meet customer expectations by providing real-time information about the status of products and services.

Connecting your supply chain provides insight into global product availability, which can help you manage inventory more effectively. 

Additionally, connected supply chains provide real-time access to data about customer demands for your goods or services. By analyzing this data, you can better understand your customers’ needs and adjust your business processes accordingly.

Finally, utilizing connected supply chains allows you to collaborate with suppliers and partners across different regions and time zones. For example, suppose you sell a large volume of a specific item in one region, but have low demand elsewhere. You can connect with warehouses closer to where your customers live, allowing you to ship the items quickly and at a lower cost. 

This collaboration between global and local teams increases efficiency and helps you stay ahead of competitors who may not be able to respond to these shifts in demand.

Below is a breakdown of the main benefits a connected supply chain offers:

Cost Reduction

Having comprehensive insight into your operations allows you to make smarter business decisions. With connected supply chains, you can see how much inventory you have, what stage each part of the process is in, and whether there are any capacity constraints. You will know exactly how many units of a particular type of product or service you need to order so that you don’t overbuy or underbuy. 

Increased Productivity

Through a connected supply chain, you are able to monitor every aspect of the production process, including raw material requirements, schedule changes, and vendor performance. As a result, you can adjust your workflow processes to match changing conditions. This helps ensure that you're procuring the right quantity of goods at the right time, resulting in more efficient operations.

Increased Profitability

Connected supply chains help boost productivity throughout your organization, as they can eliminate bottlenecks and increase output. This allows you to meet increasing demands for your products and services while keeping your cost per unit low.

By using connected supply chains, you'll gain greater visibility into your inventory and production activities, which can help you identify opportunities for optimization. This should lead to fewer errors, improved quality control, and higher yields. This means you'll spend less time trying to recover lost or damaged products, as well as reducing the risk of recalls because of poor quality.


A Deeper Understanding of Your Customer's Needs

In addition to providing data to optimize your operations, a connected supply chain can help you understand what your customers need and base your activities on customer demand. Leveraging information on demand spikes and trends allows you to make accurate predictions and stay agile in responding to market changes. 


Improved Customer Satisfaction

A better understanding of customers’ needs enables you to provide a superior experience through real-time communication and feedback.

In turn, the ability to collect immediate feedback allows you to address issues and improve your reputation, ultimately driving customer loyalty.

Reduced Operating Risks

Because you're connected with all stakeholders involved in your entire supply chain, you can mitigate potential risks. By having access to timely and up-to-date information about shipments, suppliers, and other factors affecting your business, you can act before problems occur—or even prevent them from happening. The ability to respond quickly to issues can give you a competitive advantage over companies that rely solely on paper records and outdated databases.

Implementing a connected supply chain can be challenging because it requires coordination across multiple departments, such as purchasing, logistics, finance, human resources, legal, engineering, and IT. However, the benefits are worth the effort.

Reduced Claim Costs

Your supply chain plays a critical role in ensuring that you deliver high-quality products or services to your customers. However, if something goes wrong along the way (e.g., incorrect parts, delayed delivery, etc.), you could face costly claims or lawsuits. 

To reduce these costs, make sure that your supply chain is fully integrated so that you can track where each component comes from, how much was spent on it, when it left the factory, and what happened to it once it arrived at its destination.

Better Information Sharing

A fully integrated supply chain gives you a clear overview of your entire operation. This will enable you to share information among your employees and partners. You'll also be able to monitor everything, from your suppliers' warehouses, to their transportation routes, as well as those of your supplier's suppliers. 

This shared knowledge can improve collaboration between parties throughout the entire supply chain, helping you achieve more efficient operations and supplier performance management, as well as lower overall costs.

Work With a 3PL Specialized in Connected Supply Chain Management

Partnering with an innovative 3PL like Beltmann Integrated Logistics allows you to leverage our knowledge and experience to implement and optimize your connected supply chain. Whatever industry you are in, our team can provide you with personalized assistance throughout the process.

Our industry-leading expertise enables us to provide solutions in:

Contact us today or call 877-518-2863 for more information.


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Why Should Businesses Use a Connected Supply Chain Infographic