Supply Chain Digital Transformation

Align strategy and build capability to accelerate digital supply chains

Supply Chain Digital Transformation Top Trends

Gartner surveyed more than 500 supply chain professionals to better understand supply chain technology focus, initiatives, value and challenges.

  • 38% of organizations are improving supply chain technology to support end-to-end processes
  • Half of supply chain organizations will have invested in artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced analytics by the year 2024
  • 8 technology trends will accelerate supply chain digital transformation over the next several years
  • Follow a 4-step process to ensure strong ROI on supply chain digitalization

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Explore the top 8 supply chain technology trends

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    Align For Supply Chain Digital Transformation

    Digital is a key priority for most supply chain leaders, but less than half have defined or plan to implement a supply chain digital transformation roadmap.

    Many supply chains have been too slow to react and are still developing the foundational physical capabilities required to compete today let alone develop, test, deploy and scale digital innovation effectively.

    Supply chain digital transformation is proven to drive growth, mitigate risk, and optimize costs, but requires strong alignment between business and supply chain strategy to succeed.

    Start leveraging supply chain digital technologies to increase business performance by building a digital transformation roadmap that addresses both short-term improvements and a strategic long-term vision.

    More than 50% of organizations have not yet actively started to build a roadmap for supply chain digital transformation.

    Plan For Supply Chain Digital Transformation

    Supply chain leaders struggle to develop the digital planning capabilities needed for supply chain digital transformation.

    Digital supply chain planning requires different capabilities versus traditional planning: technical skills including advanced analytics; business skills like cross-functional collaboration and data-driven decision making; and behaviors/traits such as adaptability and risk taking.

    Effective roadmaps for supply chain digital transformation consider redesigning the planning organization, centralizing the analytics team, and building supply chain talent for the future.

    Investing in supply chain digital transformation ensures your supply chain can harness and scale the technology and innovation that promise business growth, risk mitigation, and cost optimization benefits.

    Organizations with effective supply chain digital transformation roadmaps are +3x as likely to see their digital supply chains succeed.

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    Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo™

    Join the world's most important gathering of CSCOs, supply chain executives along with Gartner experts to transform and innovate your supply chain strategy.

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    Business Case For Supply Chain Digital Transformation

    CEOs are working hard to hunt revenue growth while resetting or rebuilding their businesses for a new reality. Digital investment, including supply chain digital transformation, can help them return to growth quickly and effectively. Introducing new digital products – including e-commerce and digitally enabled products (subscription-based, pay as you go) – has the highest returns of digital transformation tactics they have tried. Future markets will belong to digitally enhanced versions of today’s products, or complete digital substitutes.

    Supply chain leaders will have to accelerate supply chain digital transformation, thoroughly revisiting their supply chain operating model to support new digital business models and digital products. 

    Over the last couple of years, CEOs have placed greater focus than ever on financial matters, including profitability, cost management, efficiency, and productivity. Many expected an economic slowdown in 2020, even before COVID-19 arrived. This priority is likely to gain more attention as companies recover from the harsh effects of the COVID-19 crisis.

    Supply chain is often the go-to function where CEOs turn to optimize their company’s costs. Supply chain leaders should be prepared with ideas for how supply chain digital transformation can optimize their supply chains while protecting the supply chain from linear cost cutting.

    The majority of supply chain leaders are pointing to three technology opportunities to optimize supply chain costs:

    • Robotic process automation (RPA) to automate repetitive supply chain processes such as order management or supply contract management
    • Advanced analytics to improve and automate supply chain decision making across several areas of the supply chain
    • Collaborative/smart robots to further automate operations across factories, warehouses, and distribution centers

    Business agility has been a priority for many organizations over the last couple of years. However, many talked about it and few have made progress. Those that did make progress fared much better during the COVID-19 crisis. For all others, the crisis unveiled supply chain capability gaps that supply chain leaders are now urged to cover. 

    Agility brings speed, responsiveness, adaptability, and resilience in supply networks and operations—all more important now than ever. Supply chain leaders can leverage supply chain digital transformation to build agile supply chains that sense and respond to unanticipated changes in demand or supply, quickly and reliably, without sacrificing cost or quality. Emerging digital innovations like AI, advanced analytics, big data/data lakes, and the Internet of Things support a more transparent, automated, intelligent, and orchestrated end-to-end supply chain.

    Gartner experts enable supply chain digital transformation

    We provide supply chain digital transformation support, helping 2,500+ supply chain leader clients improve decision making.