In general, the term "supply chain democratization" is used to describe supply chain tools becoming accessible to an increased number of companies, rather than being only available to the largest, most well-resourced players.
Small and medium enterprises can use Routeique’s technology to automate and gather the data that they need to succeed and compete with larger players.
The democratization of supply chain technology has become an increasingly hot topic--you’ve probably already seen a few of the many pieces on the democratization of blockchain, technology like TMS systems, and even weather data for trucking.
When discussing business tech, most sources evaluate democratization in terms of how accessible technology is to businesses of all sizes. For example, FreightWaves writes, "The power of systems like the ones I have described will be realized when they are as ubiquitous for businesses as Google Maps and Waze are for consumers." Simultaneously, sources, such as Supply Channel Channel, suggest full or complete democratization of technology is "a scenario where this technology becomes so commonplace that the usage gets adapted by not only organizations but the common consumers." In general, these differences in terminology can be attributed to the type of technology experts are zeroing in on — while parcel tracking may become ubiquitous for everyday consumers and SMEs, niche tools for trucking are less likely to become as widespread.
In this blog, we'll show the increasing democratization of supply chain technology can benefit businesses of all sizes, as well as the end customer.
Small and Medium Enterprises: Providing The Tools To Succeed and Scale
Our CEO, Mike Allan, recently sat down with Automating The Chain's Tee Ganbold to discuss Routeique’s story and recent developments.
In this podcast, Mike and Tee discuss how in light of COVID-19, many B2B distributors pivoted to B2C to continue serving end customers while adhering to public health directives.
Many of these distributors discovered that they learned more about those customers when using Routeique™ for their B2C deliveries. Previously, distributors had sold to stores and were left in the dark about their customers buying habits and preferences. But with Routeique™, they were able to gain a greater understanding of their end customer: "They got a taste of that Amazon advantage--Amazon, aside from the fact that they built an incredible machine for the supply chain side, they know their customers directly," says Mike, noting that after experiencing this, many businesses decided to explore these opportunities in more depth.
Similarly, our robust suite of tools allowed AlbertaGrocery.ca to build a network of local businesses, and effectively organize and optimize shared home delivery through one partner.
The democratization of other technologies brings many of the same benefits as this example. Small-to-mid-sized distributors can gain more insights and operate with greater efficiency. This enables them to scale and meet customer expectations that are, increasingly, influenced by the ease of B2C e-commerce giants like Amazon and Walmart.
Large Enterprises: Connecting Supply Chain Firms of All Sizes
Democratizing supply chain solutions brings benefits for small and large players alike.
For example, using Routeique™ solutions, large companies that operate nationally or internationally can quickly and seamlessly leverage a network of local suppliers and small business owners.
This makes it possible for smaller distributors with a few trucks to participate in the network, allowing their businesses to thrive. At the same time, the seamless and transparent nature of this system enables large companies to "act like they own their network" without having to take on the costs and challenges of acquiring their own vehicle fleet.
End Consumers: An Enhanced Customer Experience
The benefits of supply chain democratization also benefit end customers, allowing businesses of all sizes to keep existing customers happy and attract new ones. For example, in some cases, smaller local distribution networks lack efficiency, despite being near end consumers.
Cost-effective access to the right tools such as order portals and route optimization can result in a more effective ordering process, and faster deliveries. This can often result in lower costs and delivery fees for the customer, as well as a smaller environmental footprint.
Get In Touch
At Routeique™, we provide comprehensive solutions for businesses of all sizes. Our current clients range from local food distributors to international food manufacturers.
For further reading, check out our blog on how adopting new supply chain technology is easier than you think.
To get in touch with our team, you can reach us through the contact button, and one of our experienced team members will be in touch as soon as possible.