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Signs of a Healthy Digital Supply Chain

The popularity of wearable health devices has skyrocketed, with more and more people able to tune into their health in a way that simply wasn't possible a few short decades ago. Thanks to these wearables, people can track their sleep, activity levels, and sometimes even their heart rate. This data helps to identify what a normal level looks like, as well as to notice changes early on and take appropriate action.

The digitization of supply chains has essentially done the same thing, placing 'wearable' IoT devices throughout a supply network to easily track the health of the entire chain and alert to issues as early as possible. Like with your own health, it's important to understand what a healthy baseline should like in order to determine deviations from the norm that may indicate a problem. Here are 5 signs that your digital supply chain is functioning as it should.

End-To-End Visibility
A healthy digital supply chain should be accumulating data at every point. Products should never go through a 'dark zone' in which there is no information on their status or safety. True end-to-end visibility means you can easily track a product from the very beginning of its supply chain right through to the final destination. If you can, you have complete end-to-end visibility.

Real-Time Data
Being able to track a product from one end of the supply chain to the other is excellent, but fairly useless if you don't get the data until weeks later. Even a few hours delay can prove detrimental for temperature sensitive supply chains. An optimal digital supply chain is able to create and report data in real time, allowing you to be notified of changes as soon as they happen.

Analytics Integration
All the data your digital supply chain collects is fairly useless if it's not used for anything. More traditional supply chains tend to collect data and put it into reports for human users to interpret and base action off of. However digital supply chains are able to utilize that data into things such as predictive algorithms to help control and support your business with less human interpretation required.

Automated Work Flows
Automating aspects of supply chains can be an essential factor in improving the efficiency of a supply chain. This may be things like demand sensing predictive algorithms which can automatically adjust order volumes as needed. It may also include a route optimization system which can automatically account for traffic or road conditions. This is where software like Routeique can help to improve the health of your digital supply chain.

Reduced Waste
A fully optimized supply chain should be running as efficiently as possible, producing the absolute minimal amount of waste. This is true for both wasted resources like labor and energy costs, but also for physical wastes like packaging and by-products. If your supply chain has been able to reduce its wastes, there is a good chance it's running more efficiently.

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