Managing 21st Century Supply Chains With Control Tower Visibility

Andrew Hull

Supply chain disruptions have become a normal challenge for logistics leaders. The culprit: increasingly globalized systems are increasingly vulnerable to regional disruptions across the globe. 

COVID-19 outbreaks and war in Ukraine, for example, are both responsible for supply chain challenges with regional scope and global impact. But not only are supply chains more reliant on global contributors, other new factors like customer expectations and tailored experiences are making them more complex. 

The growing complexity of supply chains makes managing these disruptions all the more challenging for logistics leaders. How should these decision makers respond? 

Let’s explore how having Control Tower Visibility is critical to operating (and winning) in this environment. 

The Big Picture 

Supply chain disruptions related to COVID-19 and violence in Ukraine are unlikely to ease any time soon, even as Coronavirus vaccines become more globally available. Labor shortages and inflation are other macro factors likely to continue to create logistics challenges that reverberate through entire systems. 

RBC Wealth Management explained why these factors turn into supply chain delays: “Because the problems are well known, orders for raw materials, component parts, and finished goods are now being placed earlier than normal, which is lengthening the queue, creating a vicious cycle.”

Image Credit: Statista

Zooming in, industry-specific factors are evidently resulting in supply chain failures as well. We’ve written previously about how top manufacturers’ hesitation to digitally transform was, in part, responsible for the baby formula shortage.  

And zooming in even further to individual components within the supply chain, we see a deeply complex web of supplier relationships, growing customer bases, added delivery milestones, and more that make orchestrating with stakeholders amid disruptions a nightmare. 

Supply chain delays trickle down to just about every business and their consumers - and their response impacts business even further. In fact, a study from AdAge found that 58% of consumers would stop buying from a brand entirely after one to three supply chain delays or disruptions. 

Control Tower Visibility 

For all businesses, having Control Tower Visibility over the supply chain is key to weathering disruptions and preventing them from happening in the first place. What does Control Tower Visibility look like? 

The business process experts here at Invisible say it’s all about giving supply chain analysts the room to spend more time analyzing strategic data and the wiggle room to respond to delays as they happen. In fact, we take work off logistics leaders’ hands in these areas to accomplish that: 

  • More Dynamic Data Operations: We give clients actionable insights from data sources that are aggregated, normalized, sanitized, then continuously enriched for an accurate source of supply chain truth.
  • Better Stakeholder Communication: Invisible provides white-labled outbound and inbound assistance for dispatch, suppliers, freight, and facilities.
  • Tighter Compliance & Safety Services: We do all-things-government and insurance related when it comes to compliance. Documentation and administrative follow-up calls and emails can be managed or automated. Don’t forget support for product recalls and rejected loads.

What makes Invisible’s control tower solution powerful? Configuration.

Our clients mix and match existing processes and partner with us to develop bespoke solutions. The result: a flexible solution that matches your needs and continues to develop in response to changing market dynamics.

For one client, Invisible supports two crucial  junctures of one client’s time-critical supply chain: dispatching and airline booking. The client sends orders via Slack, then Invisible agents find and dispatch the best available driver to follow through on the delivery, and personally communicate special needs for it at key points of transport. 

What’s next? 

If you’re looking for a teammate to manage your supply chain, Invisible is ready to help. Get started here and someone on our dedicated accounts team will get in touch with you. 

These solutions might be up your alley as well: 

  • Project 44 - Experts at solving tech problems plaguing supply chains
  • Flexport - Tech platform simplifying global trade
  • FourKites - Real time global supply chain visibility 

Work smart, move fast, and focus on what matters most - with Invisible.

Schedule a call to learn more about how Invisible might help your business grow while navigating uncertainty.

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