In the past few years, supply chain professionals have faced new and bigger challenges than ever before. Unprecedented disruptions, unforeseen risks, and unpredictable shifts in supply and demand have left countless teams scrambling to pivot their operations and keep their heads above water. At the same time, supply chain technology is evolving to support these sudden shifts and help companies build resilience and future-proof their processes.
Here are a few recent ways that supply chain technology has lept forward leaps and bounds to support the rapidly changing logistics landscape.
The rise of application programming interfaces (APIs)
Until recently, data interoperability was a major challenge for many shippers. To stay in the loop, companies would often have to manually build data exchange and transmission applications to connect with individual carriers and terminals. In some cases, the ancient methods of sharing information (like picking up the phone) seemed like the only viable option.
The increasing popularity of APIs is changing the face of communication in the supply chain. By creating quick communication links between shippers and the companies they rely on, like carriers and third-party providers, this modern supply chain technology makes it easier for shippers to gain end-to-end visibility, from identifying potential problems and disruptions in real-time to directly accessing carrier pricing—an essential element in managing costs.
The balance between wearable and cloud-based supply chain technology
Wearable technology has been around for a few years, proving especially useful for warehouse employees who may not have the time or means to easily track their efforts as they move around a facility. But this tech found a new purpose during the global pandemic: helping employees who had to work onsite uphold social distancing precautions by alerting them when they got too close to any coworkers.
At the same time, increasing access to cloud-based supply chain technology helped many companies minimize risk for everyone by asking as many team members as possible to work from home at the height of the pandemic. Cloud-based tools also allow shippers to respond to other emerging challenges, like the difficulty of sharing information between far-flung facilities in the age of globalization.
The push for advanced analytics
The more things change, the more critical it will become for supply chain professionals to leverage data to make informed decisions—and fast. In fact, Gartner predicts that through 2024, “50% of supply chain organizations will invest in applications that support artificial intelligence and advanced analytics capabilities.”
As companies generate more data than ever, they need tools that will help them rapidly aggregate, visualize, and analyze it while ensuring the data is up-to-date and of a high enough quality to draw conclusions from. Luckily, these tools already exist and are becoming more accessible by the day.
The future of supply chain technology is already here
At CTSI-Global, we know that it can be challenging to figure out which new and emerging technology will have the biggest impact on your supply chain—and help you solve your most pressing challenges. That’s why we do the heavy lifting for you by evaluating different options, building best-in-class solutions from the ground up, and partnering with trusted third-party providers.
Our leading-edge, cloud-based logistics solutions come equipped with data analytics and business intelligence capabilities to help you improve your decision-making and keep costs under control. And with a range of seamless integrations that allow our clients to leverage modern technology like APIs in the supply chain, we provide access to everything you need to be successful in an ever-evolving logistics landscape.
Take your operations into the future. Contact us today to get started.