Supply Chain experts take pride in being able to balance risk with efficiency. But it is a fine line they tread while addressing some of the key risks that affect our supply chains: cyber risk, geopolitical and labor risk, supplier economic conditions and natural disasters. Typically, organizations want to deal with a limited number of suppliers to ensure consistent quality and predictable processes and logistics. Though it leads to efficiencies under normal business circumstances, it may also lead to major disruptions in the event of unforeseen disasters cited above. Thus, we see that most organizations struggle for a balance between geographical distributions of the suppliers vis-à-vis number of suppliers in each geo.
Most of the risks we discussed here are Un-predictable - for their occurrence, for how long they last and how far-reaching their impact will be. In most cases, the best possible response is only reactive. A recent study by Federal Emergency Management cites that 40% of companies affected by natural disasters do not get back on their feet after a natural disaster – and even if they do, they are not as efficient as they were before. Therefore, there is a clear need for organizations to at least react in the best possible manner to these occurrences in the interest of ensuring business continuity. The real winners will be those who can drive down risk and swiftly rejig their supply chains in response to these disasters.
At the core of such a resilient and responsive supply chain will be the latest digital technologies that can assimilate and process huge amounts of internal and external, structured and un-structured data to make real-time decisions. For example, by taking into account the current geographical spread and intensity of the disaster, various news feeds, and guidance by governmental and advisory bodies and combining this with the supplier-specific information you have in your internal systems to estimate the impact for your customers and business, and taking effective remedies.
We at Wipro have been helping customers through a purpose-built solution for this specific scenario called the Supply Chain Risk Visibility (SCRV) solution. The solution offers below advantages:
- Gives real-time visibility to any untoward natural or man-made disruptions across the world by analyzing the real-time news feeds
- Classifies the disaster zones by severity (High, Medium, Low, Unaffected )
- Provides a real-time geographical view of the affected suppliers in these zones
- Provides real-time dashboard with the number and value of Purchase Orders assigned to the affected suppliers and subsequently the customers that are impacted
- Proposes all the unaffected suppliers for similar products and recommends what orders could be redirected to which supplier
- Allows the procurement managers to re-route the PO’s with the click of a button
- Notifies customers of the current status and any changes to expected delivery dates
The solution is built on the SAP Cloud Platform and integrates with the SAP S/4HANA digital core. It offers an intuitive UI built on SAPUI5 with conversational AI embedded for hands-free and easy interaction. It leverages SAP HANA’s geospatial processing capabilities, Machine Learning APIs from SAP Leonardo and Predictive analytics for projecting the impact.
The solution can help handle emergencies in essential industries such as healthcare, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, food supply or any other industry with a critical supply chain system.