Twenty-year supply chain veteran, Chase Sowden, head of Supply Chain Architecture at Barcoding, Inc. predicts the top supply chain trends expected to affect the market in 2017. Amongst his predictions, Sowden believes traceability, technology adoption and expansion of supply chain footprint are all areas to watch.
“2017 will mark the year that more companies will look at becoming proactive, instead of reactive as a way to be more profitable,” said Sowden in a statement. “Companies must begin and continue to ask themselves, ‘How well are we really doing and what can we do to improve?’”
Sowden believes that the following three major industry supply chain trends will make a big impact on applications moving forward:
- Responsibility of Traceability — In 2017 and for the next 3-8 years, we will see more companies put an emphasis on traceability, especially as they become more global. They’re being pressured by the Food and Drug Administration and other regulatory requirements to know where their product, as well as the items that store their foods, is at any given point in the supply chain. These companies will look for technology to gain more control and visibility as well as security.
- Acceleration of the Supply Chain — In the last year organizations have begun to realize that they need to take a deeper look at the technology they’re implementing to make sure it is enabling them to be more efficient, have better control, reduce risk and manage cost savings. In order to do this, they need to understand the importance and take advantage of big data. Big data must be pulled from all areas of the supply chain– from the product floor to the end of transport — to provide a holistic view of their operations to make improvements.
- Expand Supply Chain Footprint — With an increasing need to get product to customers in a timely manner to be profitable, companies are looking at building new facilities. Companies looking to expand their supply chain footprint have traditionally only focused on the capital needed to build the facilities. To have a higher return on investment (ROI), organizations need to consider outside factors — both geographical and economical. This includes the weather, local military bases, interest rates, regional minimum wages and other employers in the area. These factors can change the way a business operates. For instance: Expanding in the Northeast means that companies must consider the amount of snow and if their product will be able to be transported when required.