How CIOs can make their supply chains more intelligent

The pandemic had brought disruptions to the supply chains globally, underscoring the importance of having a strong supply chain in every business, in both the short- and long-term. For a trade-dependent economy such as Singapore, having stable and resilient supply chains where goods flow smoothly in and out of the country remains key to driving economic growth.

As enterprises recover from the impact of COVID-19, business leaders however, are faced with the ongoing challenge of bringing operations back to pre-pandemic levels, and this is where technology can make a difference.

Technology plays an important role in the strategy and operation of supply chains. CIOs must therefore take the lead and play a more integral role in leveraging innovative technology to build smarter, better supply chains for their organisations. Beyond managing IT systems and services across the enterprise, CIO must simultaneously become active and key contributors to shaping and driving company-wide digital transformation strategies, to boost agility and resilience in a fast-changing world.

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Ensure your company’s supply chain is being managed smarter and better than ever before.  

To build and implement an intelligent supply chain, it’s crucial that CIOs take action by utilising the latest technology to optimise many planes of the supply chain. With an intelligent supply chain, companies can take advantage of technological advancements to collect data, conduct analysis, and develop insights to reduce costs, increase profitability, accelerate speed to customers, and get ahead of their competition.

Against this backdrop, industrial edge, which has ready-to-use edge connectivity, devices, apps and device management infrastructure, can enable more intelligent supply chains. Industrial edge brings edge computing as close as possible to the data source, connecting all assets and processing it locally.

With the help of industrial edge, companies can accelerate processes without sacrificing quality. It brings bandwidth-intensive content and latency-sensitive applications close to the user or data source to enable digital transformations that can improve customer experience and increase operational efficiencies. In fact, Gartner research predicts that 75% of enterprise data will be created and processed at the edge by 2025.

As supply chains are continuously becoming more connected, dynamic and expanded, these solutions address the need to automate certain processes by adding intelligence, guidance, and sensory awareness, allowing them to operate independently from humans.

Put an increased focus on data crunching capabilities at the edge. 

Use cases such as asset management need performance monitoring and data processing to occur in real time to function properly. Additionally, richer insights are needed from business systems data combined with operating data from staff working on the plant floor.

CIOs must therefore establish edge ecosystems that transform operations by allowing decision-making to occur extremely close to the original source of information. Enabling data analysis, communications, and storage of data capture allows for more even and seamless workflows, distributes data capacity, and streamlines responses to stakeholders who need to make decisions in real time.

Across many supply chains, decision-making at the edge is already happening, and now the focus shifts to identifying more use cases to further enable connected, autonomous, and automated networks of edge decisions.

Strike a balance between implementing new and smarter solutions and training supply chain professionals to keep them up to speed.  

As powerful as technology is, company-wide buy-in is the only way to achieve optimal efficiency and successful adoption by all teams. To ensure a seamless transition to the latest technology, companies must start from the top and work all the way down to the goals and needs of key individuals and functions.

CIOs must therefore make concerted efforts to showcase the capabilities and benefits of the technology they are introducing. For example, if a company is introducing the industrial edge, it should highlight the acceleration of high-quality edge computing and the ability to modernise responses to stakeholders in real time to make imperative decisions.

In managing intelligent supply chains, CIOs need to be leading the charge to adopt the latest technology, maintain new tools, and create processes that maximise efficiency. Industrial edge is one of the latest tools right at CIOs’ fingertips that can transform the supply chain infrastructure to meet the increasing demands of today’s world.

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