Mike Jarrett, president and chief executive officer with Jarrett Logistics, talks about how supply chains can overcome the big challenges that they’re facing, as they struggle to get product to market on a timely basis.
With the pandemic lingering, fuel prices on the rise and supply chain bottlenecks delaying shipments around the world, it has never been more important to have a fully optimized supply chain, Jarrett says.
As always, the goal for logistics providers is to get product from the manufacturing facility to the distribution center and on to the customer as quickly and efficiently as possible. Accomplishing that task in a time of unprecedented crisis, Jarrett says, is a matter of “getting back to fundamentals.”
It all comes down to one question: “Do you have a broken supply chain, or a thriving supply chain?” The latter depends on having the right people and equipment that can deliver on time, visibility into where the shipment is at any given moment, and a person to whom the shipper can speak whenever something goes wrong. To thrive in an environment where so much is beyond the control of shippers and carriers, it’s all the more important to focus on the elements that the logistics provider can control.
Technology can help. “It’s an incredible tool,” Jarrett says, noting the progress that has been made from 30 years ago, when electronic data interchange (EDI) was the cutting-edge solution for linking supply chain partners. Now it’s being replaced by application programming interfaces (APIs), which are proving to be “a very efficient, cost-effective way to tie your systems.”
People, of course, are still needed to make supply chains run smoothly, but they’re being aided today by artificial intelligence, which is able to process immense amounts of data and provide accurate forecasts of demand.
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