Modernize the supply chain with automation and more sustainable practices

It’s no secret now that the global supply chain has been severely damaged by more than two years of COVID. After 40 years of “Just in Time”, the weaknesses of this system have finally been revealed. To partially resolve demand volatility, transportation costs, labor shortages, semiconductors and raw materials, efficiency losses and manufacturing production doubts, it will haveautomation of skills and the circular economy.

Modernize your supply chain

These solutions are the ones favored by supply chain managers (RCAs) who were surveyed recently and the findings were published in a report. This document, entitled The resilient digital supply chain: How smart workflows balance efficiency and sustainability (The Resilient Digital Supply Chain: How Smart Workflows Balance Efficiency and Sustainability), was jointly prepared by the IBM Institute for Business Value, Oxford Economics and Celonis.

Based on the expertise of some 500 RCAs from ten different sectors of economic activity, including transportation, the document states that 72% are convinced that automation of their processes will be done within three to five years. . They are 69% to say that real-time data management will go through the rapid implementation of “Cloud”.

“The combination of post-COVID-19 challenges, inflation and supply, security and sustainability issues has led to the most complex operating environment in modern business. It has forced organizations to rethink and rebuild. their supply chains to be more agile, efficient and sustainable, he says Jonathan Wright. For a Managing Partner, Finance and Supply Chain Transformation at IBM Consulting, automation and data-driven intelligence are key not only to assess current workflows and inefficiencies, but also to identify new opportunities. »

Data for efficiency and sustainability

To have these opportunities, RCA must optimize the efficiency of its operations, which, say 83% of them, will move to real-time inventory management based on artificial intelligence (AI) by the time 2025. It also has 27% of RCAs that want workflows and production processes to be automated within three to five years.

If 74% of RCAs are convinced that the digital transformation of supply chains will necessarily go through “Cloud” integration, there is another aspect where digital management can have a positive impact on the organization: the development of the circular economy . In other words, eliminating inefficiency and waste of resources in all dimensions of production, from procurement to delivery and recycling.

“Eliminating inefficiencies in key supply chain processes represents a huge opportunity to reduce carbon emissions on a scale,” he said. Janina NakladalGlobal Director of Sustainability at Celonis.

This approach is embedded in the new economic philosophy that 51% of RCAs are willing to sacrifice 5% of their short and medium earnings to improve their sustainability results.

In what way?

By improving the energy efficiency of their products and services (44%), RCA also plans to build them with renewable energy components (35%) or even without waste (30%). Finally, there is a goal, for 47% of them, to design their products and services according to their complete life cycle. Which ultimately means minimizing waste and making the material reuse its mantra.

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