CareCredit - Women's Health April 2024

Supply Chain Modernization Gap Narrows With Investments in Automation, Digital Payments

Supply chains are the lifeblood of global commerce, linking manufacturers, suppliers, distributors and retailers to ensure products reach consumers efficiently. 

However, traditional supply chain models, often reliant on manual processes and disjointed communication, have struggled to keep pace with the demands of today’s dynamic markets. 

Recognizing this gap, businesses are increasingly turning to advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), automation and blockchain to transform and modernize every aspect of their supply chain processes. 

In a recent interview with PYMNTS, GreyOrange CEO Akash Gupta shed light on how these advanced technologies, including robotics, AI and what he termed “an intelligent software orchestration layer,” have been instrumental in streamlining warehousing and fulfillment processes, while efficiently managing inventory flow and data. 

He also pointed to Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology as a valuable tool that has facilitated accurate tracking of item locations as they progress through supply chains.

Gupta further elaborated on GreyOrange’s proprietary GreyMatter AI-driven platform, which he said intelligently models optimal decisions and outcomes to ensure seamless workflow management. 

GreyMatter also offers a unified, single-view format for all inventory nodes, providing broad visibility and control over the entire supply chain network. “You’re getting a holistic view of what’s happening in the network,” Gupta said, “rather than looking at a bunch of Excel files … and it helps the interaction between sales managers and warehouse managers.”

The company recently secured $135 million in a Series D funding round, funds which Gupta said will be allocated toward enhancing the firm’s software platforms, including development of gStore, the company’s app tailored for omnichannel and in-store fulfillment operations.

Cleo, a provider of ecosystem integration software, is also riding the supply chain digital wave. The company recently unveiled its latest cloud-based B2B integration platform extension, Cleo Integration Cloud (CIC), tailored specifically for the logistics and transportation sector. 

The solution aims to enhance supply chain efficiency, optimization and resilience for over 400 customers within the sector who rely on Cleo’s integration approach. 

Specifically, by leveraging CIC, businesses can adapt to evolving industry landscapes, launch data-centric services, and optimize their supply chain operations for improved performance, the company said in a Feb. 5 press release, per PYMNTS.

Digitizing Supplier Payments

Supplier payments are also witnessing a clear shift toward digital transformation. 

According to findings detailed in “Digital Payments: Modernizing Procurement Processes,” a PYMNTS and Corcentric collaboration, businesses across various sectors, including healthcare, finance, insurance, retail and manufacturing, are actively modernizing their business processes by investing in digital payments technology. 

These investments aim to boost process efficiency for procuring goods and services under normal business conditions while enabling swift responses to potential future disruptions. 

Per the study, 31% of retailers are currently investing in these procurement systems, with an additional 53% planning to do so. Similarly, 42% of manufacturers have already initiated upgrades to their procurement technology, and 44% are in the process of doing the same. 

Drilling further down in the data shows a growing emphasis placed on enhancing supplier data such as real-time inventory information and supply chain analytics. 

This focus enables businesses to refine their planning and forecasting capabilities while also facilitating the management and expansion of supply chains to meet surges in customer demand or identify alternative suppliers in case of shortages. 

In line with these efforts, the survey found that more than half of manufacturers (55%) and retailers (54%) investing in procurement system improvements are also allocating resources to upgrading logistics and supply chain functions. 

Additionally, more than 40% of retailers and 39% of manufacturers that are investing in procurement system upgrades are also investing in upgrading their supplier data systems.