Four Ways Smart Sensors and Technology Can Transform Your Supply Chain
April 14th, 2016 by Jim Hayden
You’ve heard all about the technology hype by now: sensors, Big Data, IoT, machine learning, analytics. Everyone’s been talking about how these technologies will transform your supply chain. Most articles are lengthy and technical, so I’ll keep it short here and provide four essential benefits to investing in smart sensors, which is what you really need to know anyway.
By leveraging the data from smart sensors, you will gain operational intelligence to transform your global supply chain. However, a sensor alone does not do anything. What you really need is the data that only comes from a smart sensor that reports on status, location, temperature, shock, humidity, and so much more.
With this type of data, cloud-based applications connected to the same networks as the sensors can consume and leverage the data. These applications piece together the data from the different sensors and apply analytic models to uncover trends and patterns.
These trends and patterns reveal actionable intelligence on key types of information, such as end-to-end visibility, on-time delivery improvements, risk identification, predictive and prescriptive modeling to anticipate supply chain changes, and insight into improved operational processes.
Here are four benefits to implementing smart sensors and technology in your supply chain operations:
- Gain end-to-end visibility: Real-time shipment tracking and estimated time of arrival (ETA) information enables you to solve inventory management, cross docking, carrier evaluation, and on-time delivery challenges.
- Improve on-time delivery performance: Visibility into your operations affords the opportunity to better predict transit times and plan shipments for accurate on-time delivery. With better insight into your supply chain operations, you are able to forecast future outcomes and improve overall performance.
- Receive real-time alerts to reduce risk: Notify key personnel about the condition and status of in-transit goods. Understand historical and real-time data to prevent operational disruptions and mitigate the risk of loss or damage to high-value goods with real-time visibility and proactive identification of high-risk locations.
- Stay competitive in the market: With advanced machine-learning capabilities, operational intelligence analytics get smarter and smarter as more data is gathered over time. This allows you to identify opportunities for improvements to optimize global multi-modal supply chain agility and performance.