Ready for the Internet of supply chain?

Posted May 22, 2018 by Tim Sandle
The quest for supply chain transformation and end-to-end logistics remains a goal for many companies. A solution rests with the 'Internet of Supply Chain', as discussed at a major conference this month.
The seizure of the Maersk Tigris cargo vessel was in connection with an Iranian court order for the ...
The seizure of the Maersk Tigris cargo vessel was in connection with an Iranian court order for the Danish group to pay $3.6 million in damages to Iranian firm Pars Oil Products Talayieh over cargo that allegedly was not delivered
Christian Charisius, DPA/AFP/File
Internet of Business’s second annual Internet of Supply Chain conference took place in Berlin, Germany, across two days this month. The event discussed the optimal solutions to enable companies to transform their digital supply chains with Internet of Things technologies, improved connectivity, and through the use of data-driven insights.
According to the trade group APICS, the Internet of Supply Chain can be captured in the following vision: "Imagine that you’ve captured all your supply chain data in real time, including your customers’ demand and preferences, suppliers’ capacities and delivery schedules, and all the transaction data as your plans are executed."
The conference also addressed some of the drivers for digital transformation in the supply chain space — focussing particularly on tighter production margins and increased globalization. These factors are pushing many businesses to implement a more connected, intelligent, and scalable end-to-end supply chain strategies.
To achieve these goals, the conference noted that supply chain and logistics employees must overcome connectivity challenges, otherwise they will not be able to put into use modern data analytics, robotics, and IoT technologies successfully. Some of the main conference themes were, according to Internet of Business:
Increasing end-to-end visibility and efficiency through Internet of Things and sensor technology.
Bridging the gap between connectivity and value, and providing a reliable, ubiquitous network.
Technology integration and interoperability challenges.
Generating value from Internet of Things.
Tips for overcoming organisational barriers to implement Internet of Things.
Barriers remain to the digital transformation of supply chain. A recent Janeiro Digital report, titled “The Modernization Gap: Digital Innovation and Transformation in Supply Chain and Logistics", found that a major obstacle is cultural resistance, and not necessarily shortages of opportunities or existing technology deployments.