Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in Supply Chain Management Review, LM’s sister publication.
As reported in SCMR.com, Smart and Mobile Supply Chain Solutions Markets have been closely examined in a recent study by Transparency Market Research. Among the key players operating in the global smart & mobile supply chain solutions market is Descartes Systems Group, Inc. In this exclusive interview we speak with Brian Hodgson, SVP Industry Strategy for Descartes, as he shares his “Top Three Trends” currently reshaping supply chains.
Supply Chain Management Review: How are supply chain networks connecting logistics parties more tightly?
Brian Hodgson: We are transitioning from legacy point to point EDI networks to real-time, API, collaborative networks. Furthermore, there are new “specialty” networks that have emerged that connect parties and that also integrate in the larger networks.
SCMR: How else would you define this space?
Hodgson: These include, for example, real-time freight visibility; IoT networks for tracking assets such as containers, pallets and unit load devices (ULDs); and capacity networks.
SCMR: So, is this creating increased visibility and collaboration?
Hodgson: Indeed, it is, which results in improved asset and fleet utilization, better inventory control, and reduced congestion and detention.
SCMR: You maintain that the second main trend is Data-as-a-service (DaaS). Can you elaborate?
Hodgson: With the expansion of networks and associated data, there is a huge growth in harmonizing data and providing it as a service to downstream applications. This may include data on truck locations/routes and data to identify warehouses and their congestion.
SCMR: Any “extras” associated with this?
Hodgson: Yes. Additionally, information on trading lanes, volumes at ports, and shipments from overseas suppliers can be leveraged in applications for sourcing, transportation, and carrier negotiation.
SCMR: Finally, you contend that analytics & AI represent the third trend to watch. Does this mean that with the growth of networks and data, the ability to leverage analytics for better and faster decision is gaining traction?
Hodgson: Not only that, it can be truly called unprecedented. New technology for visualization and benchmarking is making its way into operational teams to enable more agile supply chains. As the data quality increases, artificial intelligence can further accelerate supply chains by using data to improve carrier selection, identify new sources of products, classify products for global trade more quickly.
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