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How to Hurdle the Biggest Barrier to Supply Chain Transparency: Data

If You Can’t Access the Truth, How Can You Determine the Truth?

Let’s just come right out and say it – without the ability to capture, aggregate, and understand your supply chain data, you have gray area within your organization.

Proprietary warehouse, transportation, and labor management systems bolted onto legacy ERP systems, all “enriched” with off-the-shelf and bespoke software solutions, are a recipe for disaster. It’s a veritable petri dish for blind spots across your operation that no amount of manual workarounds can fix.

The data locked in black boxes across your operating network causes you, and your network, to operate ineffectually.

The consequences can be serious. If you can’t see what’s truly going on at any moment in time across your supply chain, you’ll make yourself vulnerable to lost opportunities, lost income, lost inventory, lost shipments, and eventually, lost customers.

Yet, the money was spent, and the technology is now in place. So, what next? How can you make it all work together and build a better supply chain business, fast? The answer:

Get Your Story Straight.

Your “story” is in your data. Every system in your network collects it and stores it somewhere. But the systems that need it can’t always access it and having a powerful, accessible, and cloud-based data SaaS platform can help.   To be successful, you need a platform with massive computing power to process daily requests that occur across your supply chain. Additionally, your platform still needs to provide your operations with an open portal into the common data lake, establishing access to a source of truth from any system or device in near real-time.

Sound too good to be true? Perhaps. If you were to go about building it yourself, you would have to spend excess time, money, and talent on the project and, by the time it was ready to launch, it may already be obsolete. Imagine a solution that transcends the need for extensive time, money, and talent investment—a visionary platform that leverages AI and machine learning to elevate supply chain execution.

Fortunately, companies are now solving this pain point by developing licensed platforms that have the ability to seamlessly plugs into all your disparate systems using open-source technology, so you can see what’s going on and make informed decisions – without wondering if you have the latest information, or if something else is hidden in the dark recesses of your technology chain.

Oh, the Things You Can Do with the Right Information.

Today’s world demands that you position yourself for clean, efficient, and effective data usage no matter what your technology stack looks like. Data will increasingly feed modern, emerging AI and ML applications and populate decision dashboards in all areas of industry.

In the supply chain, accurate data is what alerts you to delays due to weather emergencies and other calamities upstream in enough time to adjust your plans. It tells you that the kitting routines you’re performing systemwide aren’t being billed uniformly across your DCs, or that a certain carrier is the optimal choice for short hauls, but a drain when they enter densely populated urban areas.

Data allows you to craft accurate forecasts for labor and inventory, spot anomalies in ordinary patterns, and compare a performance across your network for meaningful adjustments that impact customer satisfaction and your bottom line.

With tools built for supply chain transparency and analytics, you can customize dashboards to visualize data in any way that makes sense to you. You don’t have to be a skilled computer programmer to build charts or graphs and drill down into the details.

Take the blinders off your organization and gain the transparency you need to compete at a new level of effectiveness.

Jeremy Hudson is Director of Client Services at Open Sky Group. As a Director at Open Sky Group, Jeremy’s focus is the products and services clients need to stay competitive and flexible in the ever changing, disruptive business environment that is the world of supply chain. Open Sky Group’s mission is to deliver technology-enabled solutions that allow our customers to achieve more, often with less, while having the flexibility to adapt to change. Our mission and core values are the foundation of our culture and guiding source in our interactions. Jeremy lives the core values and mission each day by bringing the best experience possible to our clients. Not only does he provide internal support to our Sales and Marketing team through software demonstrations, presentations and industry interviews, he is an essential member of implementation teams, working alongside our clients, encouraging them to use innovation and best practices instead of customizations for their long-term success.

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