“The changing landscape across today’s retail and consumer industries has resulted in a rapid rise of emerging technologies, especially when it comes to automation and artificial intelligence. Retail is one of the sectors to already implement and invest in cognitive and AI technologies, resulting in new and unexpected offerings for consumers and shoppers around the world.”
As the next generation of customers expects brands to provide unmatched experiential design and functionality across multiple interfaces, retaining customer loyalty requires retailers and manufacturers to implement cognitive, automated services while still remaining transparent and secure.
While scouting out new technologies is important, it often takes up so much time for business leaders that they end up going back to their current systems. If a company is serious about responding quickly to the ways customer behaviors are changing, the startups that are gaining momentum in its industry, and the new technologies that ought to be integrated into its offerings, there are probably dozens or hundreds of people throughout the organization who should be tuned in to those signals. Businesses that are trying to invest in understanding how the world around them is changing and how it will affect them, they must also invest in the relationships and systems that allow them to take quick action on what you find.
Advanced technology solutions are not only reducing costs in the supply chain but can also increase revenue. Cost, efficiency, effectiveness, productivity are critically important for any company building and managing their digital supply chain, but business leaders are trying to leverage supply chain excellence as a differentiator that generates new revenue. The idea of mastering the supply chain- from source to production to the customer and back again, enables businesses to do new things that set themselves apart from the competition.
Retail is considered one of the most challenging industries because of the sheer amount of fierce and visible competition in the market, shrinking profits, rising customer expectations, and the need for talent to work 24/7, 365 days a year. Retail is also one of the most profitable industries for the exact same reasons. Unfortunately, retailers are constantly trying to figure out who their most profitable brands and partners are, and who are not. Profitability can be extremely difficult to navigate in the retail space because it is always changing and there are no re-dos. A tunnel-vision approach to profitability causes decisions to be made that are expected to protect profit, but sometimes cause larger, negative downstream effects. So, what can retailers do?
Managing geopolitical risk has always been a part of procurement and supply management’s job, but as new sources of supply volatility emerge and the threat of tariff escalations increase, managing these risks has become critical. In an environment of overall declining prices in technology industry, driving cost reduction has been the relatively straightforward and the standard measure of procurement success. Volatile markets have shaken the assumption behind slow but consistent cost reductions however, and many electronic manufacturers will need to shift their goal to ensuring continuity of supply and perhaps limiting price increases. With the rise of supply chain analytics and new technologies paving the way for supply chains, it is critical to be prepared for what is to come.