From Manual to Maximized

February 17, 2022

From Manual to Maximized

Improving the efficiency & speed of your supply chain with an intuitive traceability solution

By Ty Schroeder

Today, businesses must embrace technologies that improve the ability to track and trace products throughout their lifecycle and across the global supply chain. An increasing number of companies have been looking at technology to provide end-to-end shipment visibility, actionable analytics, automated processes, and frictionless documentation and payments. In fact, 60% of global manufacturing supply chains have invested in technology and business processes to enhance their operations.

Previously, taking hours of manual work to handle issues like recalls was standard, but this often was time-consuming and left room for human error. Being able to analyze traceability systems will help companies look for repetitive tasks that automation can address. Traceability solutions like ProLinc® can provide a full audit trail of a product’s journey to help maximize a company’s supply chain and improve efficiency overall. Let’s explore how a traceability solution can streamline manual processes and improve your organization’s supply chain visibility.

26% of respondents

in a Statista survey listed improving traceability flows as their top focus for improving visibility.

Enabling Transparency with Automation

Supply chain transparency requires companies to know what is happening with their products from supplier to the shelf and to communicate this knowledge both internally and externally. In the past, tasks would be handled manually, creating potential for oversights in key parts of the supply chain. In fact, a recent survey showed that 60% of respondents said they were very likely to invest in warehouse automation. This digital process automation streamlines manual tasks that are important for an efficient supply chain, but are also error-prone, like:

  • Scanning incoming freight
  • Sorting merchandise for storage or packing
  • Monitoring levels of consumables, like packaging
  • Identifying bottlenecks in workflows
  • Delivering alerts when inventory runs low

Since data serves as the backbone for optimization, utilizing a traceability solution creates transparency throughout the supply chain allowing all users visibility into the product down to the individual component. Having an autonomous supply chain will help anticipate disruptions and provide a solution before they manifest.

Speeding Up the Supply Chain

Automating the gathering, transmission, and sorting of data at key moments in the supply chain gives organizations the means to make workflows faster, more efficient, and better equipped to recover from setbacks. This level of data management can help organizations maintain compliance and enables them to respond quickly to problems should they arise.

For example, one major U.S. retailer describes the food supply industry as one that frequently employs a manual, paper-based tracking system for supply chains which can lead to delays and dead-ends in tracking and removing contaminated food from shelves. Stopping outbreaks of foodborne illnesses can be made faster through food traceability protocols because of the accuracy, speed of obtaining tracking information, and the inability to be altered by third-parties. Reaction times for managing these potential recalls and risks are also handled faster when a traceability solution is in place.

Additionally, when surveying food suppliers, 30% of respondents stated that their priorities when investing in new technologies are end-to-end tracking and traceability of goods. Since both agility and resilience are rooted in the traceability of where and how products are flowing through the supply chain, the information collected enables the ability to make fast and accurate decisions.

Improving Efficiency through Traceability

Prior to traceability functionality, organizations followed processes that were often subject to failures that resulted in incorrect data, extra manual labor, and delays in shipping. Implementing a traceability solution like ProLinc® can minimize these errors and maximize visibility to improve overall efficiency throughout the supply chain. Gaining transparency in the supply chain has become a necessity so that companies can ensure quality, safeguard products, protect consumers, streamline location of inventory, and guarantee on-time delivery to market. When looking at the top risks associated with a lack of traceability in an organization’s supply chain, lost products and inventory are a top concern, followed by supply chain disruption and the inability to effectively manage recalls.

A key benefit of using a traceability solution for supply chain management is the ability to manage and track timing of raw materials and sub-components in the production process. In fact, a study showed that 26% of respondents listed improving traceability flows as their top focus for improving visibility. Showing that there is a direct relationship between traceability benefits, such as improved risk awareness, and supply chain resilience, expectations around traceability have increased significantly as technologies offer more opportunities for visibility. Traceability solutions can help predict various issues that might arise from when and where a sourcing shortage may occur to locating expiration dates for packages in need of recall.

Visibility, Quality, and Integrity Powered by an Intuitive Traceability Solution

Ultimately, without proper traceability you risk the integrity of your supply chain. Manual processes leave room for too many errors and a lack of visibility into key aspects of an organization. Utilizing a proven traceability solution helps to streamline these processes by enabling transparency and oversight of every area of the supply chain, enabling quicker response times and preventative action. Ashton Potter’s ProLinc® helps organizations fully track and trace components, products, and batches throughout the supply chain—enabling real-time visibility that keeps up with your organization’s ever-increasing pace.

Speak with an expert today to learn more about how ProLinc® can help improve efficiency and maximize your organization’s supply chain.