A supply chain network ensures a steady flow of raw materials, semi-finished or finished goods upstream, while overlooking the supply of final goods downstream to end-users via distributors and retailers. The overall profitability of a business depends mainly on how this network performs, ending with the actual delivery of goods/services.
When multiple supply chains are connected together in an intricate network overseeing the movement of materials, information, and goods and assessing the policies and factors impacting an essential supply chain, the whole arrangement is defined as a supply chain network.
Eventually, the ultimate purpose of a supply chain network is to drive value to end-users and ensure their demands are met with adequate and timely supply.
In the era of digital transformation, the same network has become more complex and widespread to source raw materials or serve the market beyond one’s geographical location. The global supply chain is a new reality that allows businesses to spread their risks evenly across a more comprehensive network.
For instance, the pandemic was a real eye-opener that demonstrated the inefficiencies in global supply chains, especially when companies failed to keep the shelves stocked up amidst panic-buying.
A typical supply chain network of any given organization comprises an upstream network of suppliers and vendors and a downstream chain of distributors, logistics, and retailers. Information flow from end-users, suppliers, distributors, and others in the network to preceding organizations. The flow of information in the near real-time directly impacts the performance of the above two networks. It includes data regarding past sales, current demands, customer preferences, and data related to external factors like the economy, a shift in weather patterns, seasonal elements, events and promotions, and others impacting the current demand for goods and services.
A supply chain network is based on two models, namely:
The push model: This is a marketing-oriented model commencing after the demand for specific goods and services arises in the market. For example, hand sanitizers and face masks during the pandemic.
The pull model: This is a customer-oriented model, and production begins immediately after an order is placed for specific items. For example, the restaurant industry mostly follows the pull model.
A supply chain is a web of workflows, often subjected to disruptions by multiple variables. Hence, supply chain network optimization is an all-encompassing endeavor. It gives a comprehensive overview of the company’s technology, tools, and resources to ensure customers get what they want, where, and when.
With the use of new-age tech-based solutions powered by Automation and AI, businesses can optimize every aspect of their network when responding to demand signals swiftly to minimize lost sales.
This is where TradeEdge Network, a proven multi-enterprise, over-the-top platform, comes in. It creates opportunities for swift action by connecting businesses in a peer-to-peer network that can respond quickly to products, services, and information needs. That way, businesses can stay competitive and maintain a network of the most satisfied and highly engaged customers.