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6 Reasons to Make Your Supply Chain Transparent

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6 Reasons to Make Your Supply Chain Transparent

Transparency is the most talked about matter in the supply chain in 2021.  From who to where to when, not only track and traceability is under question. Fraud prevention, consumer trust, sustainability, and reducing claims, all are just as important to the company as the product is to the end consumer. By making the supply chain more transparent, not only is the consumer convinced, but the labor and costs on the company’s side will also be more efficient.

1. Prevent Fraud

According to Freight Waves, the most fraudulent activity happening in supply chains is financial abuse. Proper invoices and billing have seen bribery, collusion, bid rigging and other schemes, reported Larry Kivett of Deloitte, when speaking about energy and resource supply chains.

Deloitte also claims that regarding internal fraud, procurement specialists are in the most common place to commit it, “internal employees pose the highest levels of risk (22.9%) compared to vendors (17.4%) and third parties (20.1%).”

Constantin von Altrock, Director of Counter Fraud Management at IBM says bank cards and mobile payments face a $20 billion a year problem. It is not as easy to steal digital identities when a blockchain framework is in place. Where supply chains are involved, IBM does everything it can to reduce and prevent fraud through transparency in the supply chain, where things globally get lost in the system and then go unseen. Their traceability standards go from A to Z, where the blockchain is shown on a ledger, traced for everyone to see. Blockchain cannot be easily manipulated and for this reason, they have chosen this at IBM as their standard or track and trace for supply chain transparency and digital payment information.

Supertrace can support blockchain or non blockchain systems in order to mitigate fraud at any stage of the supply chain.

2. Track and Trace

The Amazon Effect proves that consumers love to have information on time and immediately on their personal devices, rather than calling a call center or going to a busy shipping hub. Not only is this in favor of B2C but also B2B for the logistics coordinators.  

Track and trace visibility is a technological leap in saving time, shipping costs, frustrating phone calls, and damaged material, across the board.  Supertrace’s easy to use software will make lives easier from the logistics staff in your office and warehouse, to the customer service folks, all the way down to the end consumer. No more lost products or delays that someone failed to mention. Take one of the stressful parts out of shipping and make it transparent!

how to make your supply chain transparent

3. Building Consumer Trust

The Nike Manufacturing Map is a great example of building consumer trust through supply chain transparency. The hot new trend of 2021 will be supply chain transparency for the business and the consumer. Consumers want to know how, where, when, who, why, and how things were invented, built, and sent. With so many workers, suppliers, materials, and countries involved with the process of goods, building consumer trust for worker’s rights and sustainable materials is more important than ever before.

With Nike’s Manufacturing Map, there is a world view with a worker count, a factory count, and the consumer can filter where the product is coming from and what it’s made of. This type of transparency is unusual but very accessible to a well run multinational corporation. It’s just an example of how bigger corporations are leaning into transparency the best they can and how the rest will follow in their steps. Consumers trust Nike because of their transparency.

Supertrace is a technology that can help with your track and trace needs, showing the consumer things that are important for visibility in your company, while protecting the privacy of things you choose.  Share stories and videos of products and workers if you choose, and in the end provide a QR code to your end customer to track the materials.  Having a track and trace software like Supertrace can benefit any organization in any step of your supply chain tracing.

4. Sustainability

In 2021 we will see a shift from linear to cyclical supply chain because of sustainable development goals worldwide. Cyclical because we will enter a period where waste after bringing the product to the consumer, is under a microscope now more than ever. Transparency regarding global goals for sustainable development are now important to the end consumer as much as to the firm itself. Transparency in materials used such as plastic, bubble wrap, and all of the packaging going around something small  so it can’t break for example, is now under scrutiny. Not only do we need transparency in products used but in packaging used and the way things are being thrown in the trash. Can they be reused? Can they be recycled? Is it more expensive?And what is it doing to the environment?  These are the questions consumers ask now before purchasing a product, and they don’t only want to know the track and trace where and when, they want to know the story behind every purchase before they purchase. 

Supertrace is a platform that can solve the transparency transition, adding videos and stories to different products, making your transparent supply chain your own.

Climate change is another obvious issue and with the pollutants that trucks and cargo ships put out, consumers want to know what is going on in the shipping process. There are different restrictions in every country and state for shipping in the US. California being one of the largest importers into the US, but with the strictest environmental laws regarding polluting and dumping, especially near oceans. In California, certain commercial trucks aren’t even cleared to enter the state without a proper smog check being passed, which means they need a newer truck.  Having this sort of transparency being demonstrated to the consumer shows the care that the organization uses to ship them the products. With Supertrace supply chain track and trace software you can be as transparent as you choose to be.

reasons to make your supply chain transparent

5. Reducing Claims

Part of an efficient supply chain risk management plan is having the right supply chain tracing software. Many claims of damaged cargo happen in the shipping process but when one part of the process doesn’t go as planned, what then? Let’s say when offloading the windmill from the cargo ship, the workers didn’t note there was a ding in the side. When the truck driver shows up, he notes the ding in the side. Who gets blamed? The guys on the docks but who really caused the ding were the workers who onboarded the windmill on the other side of the world. Had the off-loaders noted it, they wouldn’t have a claim against them.

In this all too common scenario, there is a lot of paperwork involved that gets lost, wet, or otherwise. While some paperwork is legal and necessary to internationally ship, track and trace done on paper is sadly still going on despite the fact it’s far from outdated. Sure, there are some workers that don’t want new technologies. But approaching 2021, supply chain risks and challenges are getting newer all the time. We must reduce the hours and hands hired to fight over claims, which are lost hours and lost money on top of lost cargo and assembly production dates disrupted. Supply chain track and trace management is a necessary and easy to adopt technology that Supertrace can make transparent in the supply chain, cutting the costs and all of the headaches that are involved in logistics.

6. Cost Reduction Through AI

Having the advanced technology of Supertrace reduces costs of customer service time and labor, physical inventory searches in warehouses, and lost goods due to lack of knowledge.  Outsourcing globally is a huge cost reducer and having a quality supply chain track and trace software will further reduce any costs associated with lost or damaged products and claims overseas. 

In an article from Material Handling and Logistics news, they note one statistic from Friction Index report, by Tungsten Network, “The average U.S. business loses $171,340 per year,” equating to 6,500 man hours according to them. 

Lost paperwork, lost invoices, miscommunications, mishandled freight, inventory put in the wrong place or not accounted for at all. These are all careless but extremely common mistakes in the supply chain and they really shouldn’t be.

When AI can handle the easier labor, the inventory counted for, and freight that would be tracked anyways by paper and outdated software, it would cut much of that time out as long as data was input correctly by staff.  AI can update everyone from warehouse to office at once instead of running about or using primitive walkie talkies when it isn’t necessary.

Supertrace can help with the transparent aspect of the supply chain while other more thoughtful tasks can be left up to human power.  We will always need people.  But having the correct supply chain transparency software will finish the tasks it could have taken hours for us to get frustrated with, while we can create and build for better and upcoming projects.

artificial intelligence supply chain

Supertrace is the simple solution to complicated problems in the supply chain to reduce man hours, costs, and claims. Prevent fraud and build consumer trust with easy to use traceability software and make your supply chain and life easier.