Is your supply chain future-ready?

As corporate leaders look at their supply chains, they often see design and execution that struggle to meet today’s competitive imperatives, much less imperatives that will arise in the coming years.

New technologies are reinventing supply chains. Customers increasingly expect a more tailored or personalized experience. Operating in this environment will require an entirely new way to architect and manage supply chains. To succeed in the coming years, companies will need:

  1. Asset-light supply chain configurations across a broader ecosystem
  2. New skills to architect and manage multiple supply chains
  3. The application of innovative technologies to deal with complexity

Critical capabilities needed in the future

  1. Managing an asset-light network
    To meet customer demands, supply chains need to become “fit-for-purpose,” based on the value proposition for a particular supply chain segment. In that complex environment, companies will frequently need to create and manage a flexible network of suppliers, manufacturers and logistics service providers to build more responsive value chains.
  2. A new role: The supply chain architect
    To develop and manage an asset-light supply chain, a new role will be created: the “supply chain architect.” These architects will help their companies move beyond functional siloes and think instead about how to architect the solutions through a network of partnerships and platforms.
  3. Harnessing intelligent technologies
    Companies can leverage a variety of new technologies to automate and add intelligence to the supply chain, helping manage operations at a new level of speed and scale.

Steps to prepare for the future supply chain

Consider what your operating model needs to look like

Succeeding with the future supply chain will require moving beyond traditional siloes and thinking in terms of customer-centric solutions.

Start now to develop the skill sets needed to design and manage multiple supply chains

For example, architects should understand the unique capabilities of different supply chain partners.

Invest in innovation

Supply chain executives should create a clear role in their organizations for innovation on top of what they typically do for equipment, facilities and software.

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Jose Bleda

Managing Director – Accenture Strategy, Supply Chain & Operations

Prashant Sanghvi

Managing Director – Accenture Strategy, Supply Chain & Operations Strategy


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