Blockchain & Supply Chain, Exploring a great opportunity
Supply chain management is the process of planning, maintaining and executing various processes involved with the journey of a product from the manufacturer’s hub to the end user. This encompasses material flow, information flow, and cash flow. Hence, supply chain management acts as a fulcrum to business operations, especially product management and customer relationship on a broader aspect.
Today’s consumers are quite aware, and while purchasing a product, they often look for authentic information regarding product origin, suppliers, manufacturers, product storage etc. On the other hand, businesses also look to reduce delays, maintain transparency, do away with fraudulent activities in the supply chain and make proper utilization of business capital. However, the efficient execution of the entire procedure is quite a task, especially for small and medium enterprises. There are multiple parties involved with varied responsibilities and stakes, it creates a complex cocktail documentation, regulations and authentications.
The existing scenario of supply chain management is tied up with the following problems:
Traceability: Supply chains linked with a decently sized organization contains a lot of elements, thus making it almost impossible to keep track of each and every element all throughout, which in turn result in misplacement, infiltration of counterfeit goods, financial losses and reduction in product integrity.
Regulatory compliances: Manufacturers are often not able to trust suppliers while sharing their products, in regard to maintaining safety standards and other regulatory compliances like custom enforcers.
Flexibility: Administrative processes and a myriad of other unexpected events across the supply chain might increase operational costs to a great extent. The existing approach towards supply chain management is not highly efficient in terms of capital spending.
Trust: Consumers are not convinced about the integrity of the products they purchase, as they have no means to identify its source, storage and integrity. This fuels the base of instability in the consumer-brand ecosystem
All of these and more can easily be achieved through blockchain. This shall also help businesses in competitive positioning, gaining consumer trust by maintaining product integrity and indulging in transparent interaction with buyers, thus converting them into long-term assets. Here’s how:
- Blockchain offers an immutable method of record keeping thus creating an audit trail, which shall help to trace and track products across the supply chain.
- Transactions and data stored on the blockchain are time stamped and tamper proof. This helps in maintaining data integrity, thus instilling trust between manufacturers and suppliers in terms of regulations and compliances.
- Real-time tracking of products across the supply chain by the implementation of smart contracts enables cost saving in moving items. Smart contracts mitigate the requirement of intermediaries and middlemen in carrying out administrative roles.
- Blockchain makes the entire procedure of supply chain management highly scalable. Any number of participants within the supply chain can access relevant data and product information at multiple touchpoints.
- A huge number of elements across a supply chain can be integrated and registered on the blockchain, which then creates digital identities of these physical items by linking them with serial numbers, RFID tags, barcodes etc. Consumers looking to purchase these at any store can simply scan a QR with a mobile application, which shall pop out a thorough informational deck about the product including its source of origin, manufacturer and supplier details, storage etc. This creates a certain degree of credibility for the product as well as the brand selling it.
Businesses and enterprises, irrespective of their size and strength should identify the pain points in their respective supply chains and then consider implementing a blockchain based solution. The technology has all the ingredients to efficiently manage and optimize supply chain management.
Nikoin’s enterprise-grade Blockchain as a Service Platform is designed especially for business to easily transform their business operations on this distributed ledger technology and build the much-needed security, transparency, and interoperability. We have identified supply chain management as a very relevant use case of blockchain and are thus working towards creating an ecosystem of knowledge, implementation, and partnership. We will keep updating with the latest developments of our R&D. Also, If you want to be part of the revolution, kindly get in touch and we can explore possibilities to build your blockchain strategy for Supply Chain.
As we keep developing and exploring other use cases, follow us on Telegram at http://t.me/NikoinGlobal. We shall keep you updated about all the happenings around our project.
Thanks for reading.