Organizations are becoming smarter in regard to what technology to adopt to help improve their supply chain, and M2M World News said machine-to-machine technologies and enterprise mobile applications are becoming more popular to streamline operations in the manufacturing world. Particularly in the retail sector, where growing profit margins are imperative and fragmentation is rampant, there is a need to make sure the organization is working efficiently and staying on point with competitors.
"Additionally, the retail sector, more than other sectors, is heavily dependent on a well-managed and coordinated production and distribution channel," according to the website. "Any delay or confusion in these channels can result in heavy losses for the retailer. Being a customer facing sector, it is also important for the retail sector to build and maintain customer interest."
With mobile networks now more able to work with M2M technologies and machines, there are more ways that efficiency and productivity gains can be achieved by organizations. M2M World said use of this technology can help take on some key challenges in the industry, such as the availability of adequate stock. By having this kind of technology in place, retailers will be able to keep a better view of production, market demand and distribution to ensure that they can expand and pull back at a moment's notice.
Another challenge that can be better met is in-store management, as staying organized and well-stocked in brick and mortar locations is a key piece to retailers staying profitable.
"In-store management includes many aspects such as maintenance of well-stocked shelves, easy navigation through stores and convenient payment methods at check-out counters," M2M World said. "There is also another challenge of providing high quality services without additional cost to the environment. M2M technology can enhance provision of efficient store services."
Keeping an Eye on the Product as it Moves
Expansion of technology like enterprise mobile solutions can also help organizations keep better visibility of the product as it moves through the supply chain. CIO.com's Brook Bentz said technology that can be accessed from just about anywhere can play a big role in helping this transformation take place.
"Supply chain visibility has been a holy grail for more than 20 years, but it was an elusive goal, until recently, due in large part to the technological limitations stemming from trying to connect large numbers of disparate trading partners," Bentz wrote. "That landscape has now changed significantly."