‘Every disadvantage has its advantage’ – Johan Cruyff.
Given the global Covid-19 crisis, it’s challenging to find positives in the supply chain disruptions. International supply chains have been truly tested. We have seen massive store closures, a drop in revenues, shortages of critical goods, expensive last-minute air freight arrangements, port closures, delays, and many more inevitable situations.
However, these unprecedented tests are encouraging companies to make some bolder decisions, not just to fix their supply chains temporarily, but to transform them. How can we bounce back?
The answer lies with making your supply chain resilient, which is more critical than ever, and the keys to resilience are digitalisation and technology.
According to a McKinsey survey of global Supply Chain leaders, 85% struggled with insufficient digital technologies in the supply chain.
Digitalisation is the answer
The same McKinsey survey also reported 93% of leaders plan to increase resilience across their supply chains and they intend to do that by using a variety of mechanisms (including dual sourcing, increasing their inventories of critical products and smart investments in supply chain technology).
Retailers are expected to give a high priority and focus to inventory planning & optimisation, logistics & distribution and diversifying product sources given the vulnerabilities exposed in these areas in last year.
And having the right technology partner will help in eliminating inefficiencies and to anticipate disruption during crisis. Digitalised businesses will have the better opportunity to:
1. Increase transparency and end-to-end supply chain visibility;
2. Optimise performance by introducing advanced analytics techniques;
3. Scale right technology solutions to build foundation;
4. Seek close collaboration with suppliers;
5. Automate decision-making;
6. Overcome the silo-mentality;
7. Have one version of truth on a single cloud platform.
Digitalisation is not just a process change
Recent statistics from PwC’s Connected and autonomous supply chain ecosystems 2025 found that Digital Champions (that is, those organisations that have developed digital capabilities to transform their linear supply chains into ecosystems) achieved savings of 6.8 per cent annually in supply chain costs, along with seeing a 7.7 per cent revenue increase.
We have seen how successful and resilient supply chains can predict disruption, be scalable, adjust and continue to operate in a crisis.
The first step lies with changing the mindset, followed by choosing the right technology partner to support your business. Digitalisation is not just a process change but an important tool for a supply chain’s future challenges.