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  • Writer's pictureMicha Veen

Consumer gadgets are innovating Global Supply Chain Models more than ever!

Consumer gadgets are continuously encroaching in our personal lives. More and more electronic appliances are part of the Internet of Things (IoT) and established in more and more households. From voice-controlled intelligence to smart appliances, we see how a multitude of smart technologies are introduced in our lives to reduce the reliance on non-value add, repetitive daily tasks. We see even how consumer gadgets are establishing a whole eco-landscape, connecting to global supply chains. For example, there is no point if your smart refrigerator shows what items require replenishment, but it can’t order these items. If then no actual delivery can take place, this functionality is useless.

This has led to introduction of various innovation trends across a consumer-led supply chain space, incl.:

  • Inventory management innovation. Tot deliver accurate, real-time inventory information has become crucial. However, managing this while maintaining low inventory levels, has driven various inventory innovations, while enabling immediate delivery to consumers has become the norm for many (online) retail organisations.

  • Small batch management. As organisations are looking to ensure minimal stock levels (see previous point), organisations are moving towards methods to run small, cost-effective batches. As manufacturing switch-overs are the critical, time consuming activities, many manufacturers are continuously assessing more effective methods to reduce switch-over times in the most cost effective way with the ability to transition from large batch to small batch processing.

  • Visibility, Track and Trace. This is a focus for many organisations. The ability to exactly know where your products are in the supply chain is crucial to manage the flow of goods effectively and efficiently. When we’re looking at consumer-led supply chains, this has become core to managing consumer demands, while remaining cost effective.

  • Social media integration. The influence of social media on consumer behaviours and therefore supply chain has become clear in the last few years. Currently, innovations have been started to evolve that link social media to supply chain solutions, creating predictive models to support Sales & Operational Planning process.

  • BlockChain or other distributed ledger models for authenticity. More and more consumers believe that full visibility in the origin of their purchases is important in their purchase. We have seen the importance of this in the Food & Beverage environment, where there have been several food scares in the last few years. But this is also becoming more relevant for clothing (e.g. child labour, etc.) and other areas.

  • Agile-based Supply Chain Development. This refers to matching the Supply Chain Innovation approach to the consumer adoption approach. This is based on iterative technology improvements throughout the gadget product life cycle. This model is also effective in the Supply Chain Development environment, matching both innovation models.

This is just a selection of areas where consumer gadgets have made a direct impact on Global Supply Chains and the related innovations. In today’s global market organisations require to put consumers at the front of their mind. At Unique Excellence we focus on consumer-led, agile-based Supply Chain and Operational Innovation, allowing us to continue to deliver real impact to our customers.

Please contact us for an investigative conversation, allowing our team of Supply Chain Innovation Experts to guide your innovation needs....

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