Quite a few companies have embarked on their digital collaboration journey, but many haven't developed it to its full potential, says Ville Parkkinen, director of product marketing at OpenText.
As both supply chain maturity and disruptions continue, there needs to be an evolution in the way shippers collaborate with suppliers in a digital way, Parkkinen says.
“We need to share more information, and more different types of information. That obviously puts a lot of pressure on organizations to evolve their current solutions, because a lot of them at the moment are used to essentially transactional information exchange. That needs to become more collaborative, and new solutions are essentially needed for that. So it’s a challenge that many companies face at the moment.”
Most organizations do some things very well, he says, “but there are some areas where they might not have touched their integration platform for 20 years because it's kind of been working there. So we have these pockets of excellence, and we have pockets that are behind in the collaboration.”
Yet while there’s a need to exchange more information in the supply chain, people are struggling with how to make use of the information they already have. So starting by investing in technology might not be the best path with a digital transformation initiative, Parkkinen says. The technology component isn’t easy, he adds, but it’s the easiest part of the journey. Bringing people and processes along are much more challenging. “It's the people and processes and how you actually operationalize that technology and really leverage that for value. That's kind of where the challenges are.”
Nevertheless, to collaborate efficiently with suppliers often means overcoming the obstacles posed by older, often highly complex systems that are in place — “legacy baggage,” as Parkkinen calls them.
Timely, incisive articles delivered directly to your inbox.