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Gartner Supply Chain Conference: Top Takeaways

With another year of the Gartner Executive Supply Chain Conference in the books, let’s look at a rundown of what we experienced and learned:

  • Your supply chain is in the midst of serious disruption. Throughout #GSCC, we heard speakers hit on four key hot topics, all of which are upending traditional supply chains and changing how we must think about and configure our logistics ecosystems.
    • The IoT. Almost every keynote speaker at the conference touched on the subject in some way–and it’s clear that today’s supply chain execs and leaders will be instrumental in the effecting future change to keep pace with this unstoppable trend. Key takeaway: The Internet of Things is forcing us to think of logistics visibility and Quality of Service (QoS) as inherent requisites of real-world devices–and not just of back-office ERP systems.
    • Robotics. People-less warehousing definitely affects how we manage supply chains and logistics, not only in terms of technology, but in terms of suppliers, partnerships, shipping, procurement, rate negotiation, and more. As we increasingly add robots to the equation, the entire ecosystem shifts. How will you respond?
    • Autonomous & semi-autonomous delivery vehicles. Building off the robotics discussion, how will your logistics systems and supply chains evolve when goods and materials are shipped without the need for drivers or pilots? How will freight shipping itself change–and how is it already changing today?
    • Cloud-based machine learning. Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are being taught supply chain best practices, which can greatly affect your ability to maintain optimal spending and efficiency. Are you making use of these new technologies? How will your company be impacted when other businesses have “smart” supply chains, and you don’t?
  • Supply chain analytics & visibility are must-haves to compete. As digital supply chains continue to connect more partners and suppliers to further enhance the customer experience, companies must be technologically equipped to predict needs, react to rapid changes, and negotiate the most efficient rates possible. The ability to see into the supply chain, manage massive amounts of data, and continually leverage that data to make smart business decisions is essential to a company’s success in a global economy. (Want more info? Here’s a nice recap of some of the points made in Phoenix.)
  • Gartner unveiled its Top 25 Supply Chain rankings. This year’s list clearly reflects the importance of the topics discussed at #GSCC. Leading the pack are companies that demonstrate a commitment to innovating alongside the changing supply chain, in terms of both digitization and volatile political climate (You can check out the full list here.)
  • Trax talked logistics & efficiency with experts & attendees alike. We were excited to host a discussion about managing the Hewlett Packard split with our CEO Don Baptiste and John Frasca, VP of Global Logistics & Network Optimization at Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Big thanks to those of you who were able to join us — but if you missed it, don’t worry. Just click here for the session recording. We also hosted a booth on the conference floor and were happy for the opportunity to interact with attendees. If you didn’t get a chance to stop by but would like to connect with us, feel free to give us a call at 480-744-9044.

What did you find most insightful at #GSCC this year? Let us know in the comments.

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