Product Data, At Your Fingertips

Product Data Blog

September 9, 2021

Product Data, At Your Fingertips

How data accessibility across the supply chain enables better product quality, rapid recall resolution, & compliance adherence

By Joe Schutte

Everyone knows that data is key to efficient operations today. But the concept of data can be vast, complex, and complicated.

It’s crucial to be able to access the right data at the right time to inform business decisions and enable essential operational functions. Product data, specifically, consists of all of the information on a certain product that can be accessed, read, measured, and analyzed in order to maintain quality, prevent recalls, and ensure compliance. With the right solution in place, this type of data is not only accessible, but it’s contextualized—enabling organizations to make data-informed decisions that yield positive results.

Being data-driven pays off. According to McKinsey, data-driven organizations are 23 times more likely to acquire customers, six times as likely to retain customers, and 19 times more likely to be profitable. If an organization knows how to access, understand, and leverage product data, they can ensure greater levels of success.

Let’s explore how gathering data across the supply chain powers necessary organizational functions like maintaining high product quality, ensuring compliance adherence, and supporting rapid recall resolution.

According to a McKinsey survey, data-driven organizations

are 23 times more likely

to acquire customers.

Maintaining Product Quality

As products move rapidly through the supply chain, their quality must be upheld every step of the way. Ensuring product quality requires the use of a solution that has instant data processing capabilities and visibility of the entire enterprise. However, many companies today use solutions that collect non-contextualized product data in isolated intervals, bogging systems down with random data dumps and creating siloes across the enterprise.

With the right system in place, however, data gathering can perform at the pace of business, collecting, aggregating, and analyzing data in real-time so critical processes can continue to run efficiently. This includes tracking and tracing products with information easily accessible and retrieving product-related information to ensure the highest levels of quality. Ashton Potter’s ProLinc® forensic traceability technology can help, as the solution works within the connected factory environment and integrates with and augments existing ERPs, factory equipment, business intelligence tools, and other systems. ProLinc® monitors critical factory floor processes and conditions, then combines these insights with product serialization to monitor quality and safety on an individual product basis. As a result, manufacturers who leverage ProLinc® are able to systematically manage product quality and safety through one unified system.

Compliance Adherence

Manufacturers in the U.S. must comply with strict regulations and adhere to standards established by government agencies for a wide range of products. Not meeting standards can be costly—non-compliance costs businesses an average of $4 million in revenue losses. In a 2020 Globalscape and Ponemon Institute survey, it was found that regular compliance audits saved businesses an average of $2.86 million, and enabling governance, risk, and compliance technologies saved businesses $1.43 million.

The ability to instantly access critical data allows organizations to maintain compliance by providing detailed information on products and subcomponents. For example, if a food manufacturer receives a request from the FDA, they can access data that allows them to compile and provide the documentation requested with a quick turnaround.

Companies must be able to recognize the supplier and recipients of a product, with the onus of responsibility on the manufacturers to track the journey of items. Track-and-trace solutions with robust product information help retailers scan and retrieve data for all the inventory items instantly across the entire supply chain, helping them maintain standards and ensure compliance.  

Rapid Recall Resolution

Unfortunately, product recalls may happen on occasion, especially with the increased standards for products today. In 2020, the FDA confirmed a total of 363 issued recalls, and the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission keeps a running list of hundreds of recalls—it documented 22 recalls in July 2021 alone.

Having an effective forensic traceability solution in place empowers businesses to streamline and optimize their product data collection processes, creating a better opportunity for gaining insight into items as they move through the supply chain. This allows organizations to track products across the global supply chain with ease to both prevent recalls and intervene instantly in the event a compromise happens.

If a recall does take place, timing is critical. Companies must be able to identify—with precise detail—any batch that has been compromised and notify distributors and customers immediately. Informative product data allows them to do this easily. ProLinc® helps companies pull these records, allowing recalls to be handled more quickly and accurately than ever before. Further still, it minimizes the cost of a recall, as only the specific batches in question—rather than all products—must be removed from shelves.

Advanced Data Accessibility, Instantly

With an advanced product security and traceability solution like Ashton Potter’s ProLinc®, businesses are able to gain insightful data right within easy reach, allowing them to make in-the-moment decisions to maintain their complex operations and boost manufacturing efficiency. 

With ProLinc’s complete product serialization and authentication, every item and component across the global supply chain is tracked and traced and applying serialized identities to products at every level creates a centralized, real-time record of product genealogy. The product data gleaned through ProLinc® allows businesses to achieve new levels of insights and entire enterprise visibility. 

Speak with an expert today to learn more about how better data accessibility enables greater returns.