In a new ongoing series, Orange Silicon Valley is highlighting the programs that our analysts use to research and collaborate with partners on new and emerging technologies. This week, we’re featuring a topic at the intersection of retail, business, the Internet of Things, and much more: supply chain and logistics.
The Supply Chain & Logistics program looks at the production and distribution of goods and services. In the best scenarios, technologies in this field can play roles in optimizing processes throughout the supply chain, helping to transport things from point A to point B in the most lean, agile, and cost-effective ways possible. This can require intensive study at every step along unique supply chains, ascertaining whether there are inherent problems or potential improvements.
The most impacted industries in this market are packaged goods and retail and ecommerce. Everything available for purchase is a product of the supply chain process, and technology enables people to produce, order, ship, and distribute those goods.
“IoT has become an important part of supply chain; if you have millions of dollars worth of goods out in the environment being shipped, as an organization you want to know where these things are, so the Internet of Things plays an important role tracking and tracing during the supply chain process.” -Justin Young, Supply Chain Logistics and Formation
Within this context, there is a growing need for new forms of technology and devices to further improve the supply chain process. As the supply chain process grows more intricate, new opportunities can arise for technologies that improve efficiency.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning is one prominent example. AI is useful when tracking cargo ships in the middle of the ocean, and it can assist in predicting where a ship will be, given certain external data sets and taking into account initial location, where the ship will end up at, and all the stops it makes along the way. Additionally, AI can help track and automate inventory levels. When a product is low and needs to be reordered, AI may be a dependable tool for informing this process.
Visit the Orange Silicon Valley Supply Chain & Logistics program page to learn more about its scope and work. Additionally, OSV will be hosting its biannual Executive Summit taking place in our office from November 12-15. Supply chain and logistics innovation will be a significant part of the discussion there.