Cloud technology can identify weak points in supply chains during the pandemic
Cloud technology is changing a number of logistical aspects of running a business. One of the changes that it has created is with improvements in modern supply chains. This helps promote supply chain stability.
Cloud supply chain solutions have been particularly useful during the pandemic.
The pandemic creates new supply chain solutions
The COVID-19 pandemic is a fascinating case study in the vulnerabilities in modern supply chains. McKinsey published a report on this topic back in July.
The authors of the report talked extensively about changes in consumer demand in the early stages of the pandemic. These trends caused a virtually unprecedented imbalance in the global supply chain.
This is most evident by looking at changes in consumer demand for food goods. In the early months of the pandemic, grocery sales increased 29%, as people stocked up for imminent lockdowns. Meanwhile, sales for restaurant chains dropped 29%, since people were scared about being exposed to the virus. On the other hand, online liquor sales surged.
Changes in consumer demand were not the only supply chain issues brought on by the recent pandemic. Transportation logistic issues also arose.
Companies have found that cloud computing has helped businesses in various sectors prepare for and address the growing supply chain problems that they faced. Here are some benefits that it offered.
Rapid exchange of information
The cloud has made the exchange of information much simpler and faster than ever before. Experts pointed out the benefits of this with international supply chain infrastructures even before the pandemic surfaced. These benefits have become even more important selling points since.
One example of the benefits of cloud technology for expediting supply chain processes has to do with audits and reporting. A company might issue a report in Delhi, which needs to be communicated to the company’s headquarters in Norway. The organization might require this report to be delivered within a week.
Unfortunately, the pandemic had created a disruption in postal deliveries. Many national postal services around the world had to cut back the number of days that they served their citizens. This would have made it harder for such a report to be delivered on a timely basis.
The good news is that cloud technology has made the exchange of information like this much easier. It facilitates the rapid exchange of information between supply chain partners, which is even more important during the pandemic.
Integration of data with more remote teams
The pandemic has put many companies in the position of creating more remote teams. National lockdowns and a fear for employee safety has encouraged social distancing on a level that we have not seen in generations.
Cloud technology has made it easier for employees to stay in communication with each other remotely. It has helped facilitate communication in novel ways.
Companies need a variety of cloud-based tools to keep in touch with their employees. This would have created a number of headaches in the past, since Internet technology was not always compatible. However, the cloud has made digital technology integrations much easier, which has significantly reduced the headaches that these companies have faced with their remote teams.
Improving scalability with digital distribution channels
The pandemic has shifted consumers away from traditional distribution networks. Instead of relying on brick-and-mortar institutions to make purchases, they are relying more heavily on online mediums for distribution.
This is another area where the cloud has been immensely helpful. Cloud technology has made resource scalability across online channels much easier. More organizations are taking advantage of this to make sure that their online distribution channels are efficiently run.
Checking customer trends
The cloud has also made it a lot easier for companies to stay abreast with new trends in the market. This has always been an important selling point of cloud technology. However, it is even more important during the weight of the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 has shifty demand for various products in the economy in surprising ways. Companies can use real time market data to make more accurate forecast serve market trends. This will help them prepare for new changes that might have been created by the pandemic.
Story by Yunas Chaudhry. Chaudhry is a super-connector with AYC Web Solutions who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, Photography, branding and networking.