Learn how to leverage 100% of Supply Chain Control Towers’ potential and use it for risk mitigation, demand forecasting, and overall efficiency improvement, plus a success story from Tredence’s notable portfolio.

What is the best supply chain solution in the age of vulnerability and disruptions?

Supply chain executives are under great pressure to meet consumers’ needs, providing them with what they want, where they want it, and at the exact time they want it. But it doesn’t end here, since they are also concerned with supply chain optimization and cost reduction, especially regarding inventory and fuel consumption. But managing all this, especially in today’s fast-paced, uncertain scenario, is very challenging.

Since the pandemic, the global supply chain network has taken many hits. While it is true that things have started to recover a bit, the numbers are still worrying.

In 2022, 82% of supply chain leaders experienced at least one significant disruption, and 50% experienced 3 or more.

These disruptions not only interrupt business, but of course, they also come with a cost. In 2022, they led to an average annual loss per company of $82 million, a staggering number that business executives and supply chain managers simply can’t ignore. 

But while supply chain vulnerabilities and disruptions are, for a certain part, inevitable, it is possible to reduce them with a correct strategic approach, and a vital part of it comes from implementing a supply chain control tower into your logistics strategy.

What are supply chain control towers?

We can define control towers as connected and personalized dashboards with real-time operational data and KPIs across the whole business ecosystem to improve visibility and decision-making. It represents a valuable Supply Chain Solution to help organizations understand, prioritize, and solve critical issues quickly and efficiently.

A functional and advanced Supply Chain Control Tower (SCCT) gives all stakeholders real-time visualizations of supply chain functional areas and health, together with the possibility to personalize the interface and set up automated alerts.

Why implement a Supply Chain Control Tower? Here are 3 Key Benefits

Improving Supply Chain visibility.

Supply chain visibility means having the possibility to track and monitor products, materials, and shipments throughout the entire supply chain journey. It requires having access to real-time data and advanced analytics capabilities. Supply chain visibility is tightly linked to risk mitigation and demand forecasting, but we will dive more deeply into these topics later.

Better cooperation across the supply chain.

Control towers make it easier to collaborate across the entire supply chain since they provide all stakeholders access to the necessary data and insight at all times, improving data access across the whole company.

Enhancing customer experience.

According to Accenture, 72% of supply chain experts believe control towers will be critical for customer experience-led growth. This is because full visibility of your supply chains means higher chances of meeting customer expectations and delivering on time.

How to use Supply Chain Analytics for Control Towers

Control towers can gather data across various siloed sources and visualize it in a personalized dashboard, offering insights and identifying potential issues. But they aren’t all the same: digital control towers should leverage advanced technologies like Supply Chain AI, automation, and predictive and prescriptive analysis. 

Finding a solution able to leverage the vast amount of data across a company’s supply chain is the need of the hour, and most executives today are well aware of the impact that a digital control tower can have on their profit. Many are trying to implement a control tower as part of their supply chain risk mitigation strategy, but the majority are failing to take advantage of its full potential. The risk is to end up with an incomplete control tower and use it only as a dashboard, which means exploiting only a very small percentage of its full potential instead of implementing a real analytics-driven, decision-support tool.

Here is how Control Tower Analytics can support your Supply Chain Risk Management

The combination of Supply Chain AI, machine learning, and predictive analytics has been proven to have a significant positive impact on risk management, as it makes it proactive rather than reactive. 

What does it mean?

By spotting on time and even predicting in advance possible disruptions, vulnerabilities, delays, and shifts in demand, the combination of ML and predictive tools enables companies to put in place risk mitigation strategies, build more resilient supply chains and adjust their strategies to avoid or greatly reduce disruptions. Moreover, such smart control towers offer valuable insights for data-driven decision-making.

According to a recent Gartner survey, 76% of supply chain executives reported higher and more frequent risks of disruptions than in the past 3 years. But supply chain excellence depends on strong supply chain analytics capabilities: investing in real-time analytics tools and digital solutions will enable the supply chain digital transformation that your company needs to maximize efficiency, build a stronger and more resilient network, and be ready to face, avoid, and counteract disruptions.

Using Supply Chain AI for Demand Forecasting

A big part of Supply Chain Risk Management has to do with the business’ capabilities to forecast demand. Implementing supply chain analytics for demand forecasting is a game changer for optimizing your supply chain and your inventory and reducing costs.

As supply chain disruptions and challenges continue, demand forecasting is gaining more and more relevance. Stepping up your prediction and analysis capabilities by leveraging the true capabilities of control towers means gaining a considerable competitive advantage.

Brands have historically employed econometrics and statistical forecasting methods to predict future market demand and organize inventory. However, these methods present important limits, as they cannot take into account different types of variations simultaneously. Luckily, advanced technologies like Supply Chain AI can overcome this obstacle.

Machine learning can enhance predictive analysis by combining historical data with real-time insights to generate accurate data-driven predictions for various scenarios.

How to get real-time visibility and strengthen your supply chain now: our success story

Find out how we helped a leading retailer set up an SCCT to get access to a granular view of their entire supply chain, with the possibility of getting persona-based or using case-based insights, alerts, and views.

Our client is a leader in the global CPG industry, serving more than 50 million customers. With such a complex, multi-echelon supply chain, the company was struggling on many fronts:

  • Often delays in shipping and delivering products;
  • Suboptimal customer experience;
  • High transportation costs;
  • Frequent out-of-stock events causing important revenue losses.

The client's desired outcome was twofold and required a two-step approach.

During phase 1, he wanted us to ensure complete visibility of status and performance metrics at each node of their supply chain network.

During phase 2, the request was to implement analytics and predictive tools in the Supply Chain Control Tower.

Tredence helped the client set up a digital control tower to improve overall supply chain efficiency. Thanks to our expertise and consultancy, the client could soon see several measurable benefits:

  • 20% improvement in on-time delivery of goods;
  • 10% increase in customer experience and service levels;
  • 5% reduction in transport costs and out-of-stock.

This case study proves the extreme value of having a Supply Chain Control Tower as an integrated insights hub for real-time monitoring, risk mitigation, and demand forecasting.

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