HomeTechnologySupply Chain Technology Trends...

Supply Chain Technology Trends To Watch in 2021

There are some latest supply chain technologies and trends that are getting much buzz. How mature are these developments, however? Do they have an ROI that is proven? Will they be worth piloting? Or can businesses neglect them safely?

There are also successful innovations that we anticipate can have great value. However, at this stage, we cannot log the ROI or other advantages. Eventually, some inventions create value that few individuals have heard of.

The leading, exciting, and related reliable solutions, but commonly adopted supply chain management technologies, are covered in this article.

Latest Supply Chain Technology Trends

Hyped Technologies

Hyped technologies are receiving much attention but have no demonstrated value. In pursuit of a solution, these seem like technologies.


5G is the 5th wireless technology generation. With 5G, you will see the download and upload speeds exponentially faster. It would also significantly reduce latency, or the time it takes for devices to connect with each other’s wireless networks. The advantages are apparent for customers who want to download films on their mobile phones and watch them. However, will supply chains have advantages?

The idea is that as more gadgets become part of the ‘Internet of Things‘ in the supply chain and production phase, they will create a vibrant data stream that will send signals to cause a wide range of events in real-time. For example, a component tote might communicate that the tote is 80% exhausted for this SKU using a 5G network, which would cause a re-order of the required components. This would be a catalyst in the supply chain management that would eventually lead to warehouse movements, possibly LTL, restructuring, and re-supply production and delivery.

5G does not get as much coverage as last year, but here we are already at the hype stage. Despite TV advertisements indicating that 5G is here already, 5G wireless networks are still being installed throughout the United States. ARC does not listen to supply chain technology providers using this network to provide its customers with the new value.


In the supply chain domain, we continue to see businesses pitching their blockchain solutions. Sometimes, these start-ups are here now, gone tomorrow. After their portion of a chain of linked activities has been completed, Blockchain is a robust solution for traceability or payment to linked supply chain management partners. As part of their increasingly entrenched way of doing business, we have continued to ask blockchain providers for the names of clients who use their technology every day. Blockchain providers cannot support these references. That is a strong indicator that the program is still in the hype process.

Promising Technologies

It seems that promising technologies will deliver durable ROI or other tangible advantages. It is exceptionally reasonable that the advantages expected will appear. However, these innovations are so young that ARC has not communicated with references and check that the benefits offered are genuine.

Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning Platforms

These Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning platforms allow companies to consume, clean, and prepare vast quantities of historical and real-time streaming data and see if it can make useful predictions for their company by applying machine learning or AI technology algorithms and techniques to that data.

Leading supply chain technology and software companies actively combine current AI and machine learning applications in the supply chain realm. This is a less disruptive and more cost-effective way for most enterprises to access AI capabilities.

However, substantial multinational companies have digital centers of excellence, corporations with over $10 billion in sales. Such businesses claim that it is possible to create custom AI/ML applications that provide value in black spaces not currently protected by existing supply chain apps. Besides, for logistics service providers, excellence is how they distinguish themselves in supply chain management.

It would make much sense to create a custom AI/ML application that their competitors do not have. Indeed, some of the biggest 3PLs working here and saying that they are getting a good value. However, it is not easy to understand how valid these statements are, such as self-serving marketing campaigns.

We are now switching to blended approaches that are partly an AI/ML platform and partly an application system. PlanIQ was launched by Anaplan, a vendor offering supply chain management and planning (SCP), and other business applications. PlanIQ extracts Anaplan data and automatically tests multiple AI/ML algorithms before choosing the optimized model to produce the best forecast for a particular use case. Amazon Forecast is used in PlanIQ. Amazon Forecast depends on the same ML technology that Amazon.com uses.

Autonomous Trucking

Startups have been pumping money into experiments, but we are still a few years away from having autonomous truck fleets on the track. Moreover, in some situations, investment dollars for this technology are starting to dry up. Starsky Robotics was one of the biggest names for autonomous truck technology. It was at the forefront of autonomous trucks being placed on the track.

The achievement list is staggering. In 2016, without a driver behind the wheel, it became the first road-legal vehicle to be charged to do real work. It became the first street-legal truck to perform a fully unmanned run in 2018. It was the first utterly uncrewed truck to ride on a live highway in 2019. Moreover, even with these successes, the company closed this year due to a lack of funds. The best guess is that if anything goes wrong in 2024, we might see autonomous trucks carrying loads without drivers in the truck to take over.

This is what the people at TuSimple are planning, and they sound to us like straight shooters. Nevertheless, these trucks will not be driving through all lanes nationwide, even in 2024. Instead, there will be an emphasis on delivering to select customers through targeted lanes. However, what seems evident is that the ROI of autonomous trucks could be excellent.

Digital Twin Technology

River Logic utilizes an AI expert system that drives a graph database to simplify creating the value chain’s digital twin. The model needs to be designed step by step in conventional supply chain planning (SCP) solutions. This is the bill of material of a product; this is the routine; this is the startup time of a production machine. However, River Logic promotes its approach as one where the AI system designs and constructs the graph database and relationships and selects and applies appropriate business rules and logic based on a visual drag and drop diagram that enables users to draw their value chain – significantly accelerating model creation and SCP implementation, including complete financial representation as incurred by the value chain.

Besides, the AI expert system assembles and produces a complete mathematical model of the client’s value chain behind the scenes, enabling advanced scenario optimizations to be easily formulated and operationalized.

Infor also employs a graph database for their multi-enterprise Supply Chain management Network known as Infor Nexus. The Nexus network links companies from suppliers and distributors to traders, 3PLs, and banks to their entire supply chain, paving the way for improved visibility, coordination, and orchestration. Infor claims that a graph database’s capacity to infer relationships helps keep the model up to date.

A business may presume that the part of a supplier constructed in Wuhan China moves via Shenzhen Port and takes an average of 22 days to reach California’s Long Beach Port. However, it may be that the components often flow through a port in Xiamen and take 25 days to reach California. The graph database will, in short, help keep the model of the supply chain accurate. For efficient success, this is important.

High-Value supply chain technologies that are widely adopted

Next Generation Control Towers

A stable supply chain control tower is installed on a cross-functional end-to-end digital twin of the supply chain management. Visibility is used in how incidents around the extended supply chain can influence the ability to meet customer orders. The digital twin models the transportation, storage, and manufacturing constraints and can then create customized plans to deal with the unavoidable exceptions.

In the past, a supply chain control tower focused more on managing exemptions from transportation or focusing more on orchestrating exceptions rather than using real optimization to optimize service at the lowest cost. Most of these new control towers are being constructed using data lakes to get the data, clean it, and normalize it.

Robotic Automated Storage and Exchange

A type of goods-to-person automation has come to market in the past few years. A combination of conventional shuttle systems and free-roaming robots, these “robotic shuttle systems” are. There are currently a handful of supply chain management providers that sell solutions that fall into this categorization. Moreover, they each address the issue differently. However, due to the dynamic movement of bots, they all have the advantage of high storage density and a high degree of versatility. This versatility of the bot reduces limits on throughput and sequencing, creating increased capacity for efficiency. These technologies are compatible with many industries’ organizational needs.

Nevertheless, they are coming to market just as demand for same-day delivery of online orders is accelerating. In e-grocery satisfaction, this demand spike is particularly prevalent. These solutions could be meeting your next online purchase.

Robotic Process Automation (RPA)

Technology that is used to automate high volume, repeatable processes is robotic process automation. Enterprise systems build improved automation over time, and users can do their work more efficiently. However, businesses using legacy systems may have opportunities to automate the legacy system’s work using an external RPA solution. By executing the same machine keystrokes and opening the same modules that humans do, RPA’s do this. We know of a 3PL that earned a strong return on investment by using RPA in their legacy transportation management system to automate the highly manual tasks associated with planning optimization (TMS). For appointment scheduling, it is often used to examine carrier websites.

In its routing approach, Descartes embeds RPA. Descartes points out that designing the best plan is not as easy as loading data and hitting the “optimize” button for all but the most comfortable route planning issues. Instead, to achieve optimum results, the best planners go through several steps. In essence, the RPA will model the steps taken by the best planners to achieve superior performance.

Most Popular

More from Author

Beyond the Syntax: Elevate Your Code with Expert Programming Assignment Help

There are three things every student must master – reading, writing,...

Security and Compliance Importance in Healthcare Software Development

Security and compliance are not mere checkboxes in healthcare software development;...

Custom Insurance Software Development: Full Guide 2024

The security sector has changed as a result of technology. It...

Best Free Online Whois Lookup Tools

If you want to find out information about a particular website,...

Read Now

Tablets, Computers, and Personal Devices Revolutionize Smart Factories

In the dynamic landscape of Industry 4.0, the convergence of technology and manufacturing has given rise to the concept of smart factories. Central to this transformation are tablets and personal devices, which have become indispensable tools in the hands of industrial professionals. This article explores the significant...

DevOps Tech Debt Trimming: Cost Optimization with Kubernetes

Continuous reassessment and restructuring are essential for achieving pivotal and evolutionary advantages, particularly in the context of modern DevOps. The demand for intelligent and distributed solutions is continually rising through the unification of ops methodologies. The combination of DevOps and MLOps has paved the way for limitless...

Emerging Trends in Database Support: AI, Machine Learning, and Predictive Maintenance

As organizations navigate the evolving landscape of database management, the integration of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and predictive maintenance is ushering in a new era of efficiency and proactive problem-solving. This article explores the emerging trends in database support, shedding light on how the fusion...

Autonomous Mobile Robots: A Complete Guide to AMR Robotics

Hauling items from place to place may not have been the dramatic robot revolution we envisioned in our childhood – it may seem a little too simple, too regular, not quite cool enough. However, in actuality, it’s tasks with these exact qualities – tedious, repetitive, time-intensive –...

Demystifying Service Performance Tests: A Comprehensive Guide Featuring 4 Industry Giants

In the fast-paced world of technology, ensuring the optimal performance of services is paramount for businesses. Service performance tests play a crucial role in achieving this goal, providing valuable insights into the reliability and efficiency of systems. In this comprehensive guide, we will demystify service performance tests,...

How to Choose a Managed IT Service Provider for Your Business

Your IT department is one of your business's most strategic areas. Yes, it eats up a lot of your budget, but without it, your organization would remain obscure. Without IT services, you could not send or receive emails. You couldn't manage your business content (website) or employee...

The Malaysian Business Guide to ERP: Selecting the Best System for Your Needs

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system have become a cornerstone for driving efficiency and innovation. Particularly in Malaysia, with its vibrant economy and diverse business landscape, the right ERP system can be a game-changer. This guide aims to steer Malaysian businesses through the maze of selecting the most...

Why is a SaaS’s Centralization Useful?

SaaS platforms are being adopted at an ever-increasing rate by businesses across a broad range of industries and sectors. While the SaaS model can offer some fantastic benefits, it is a different way of working that can require some adjustment time. Part of the appeal of using SaaS...

The Vital Role of MDM Solutions in Managing Shared Android Devices in Healthcare

The healthcare sector has been digitalized with the latest digital gadgets to streamline patient appointment scheduling, diagnosis process, and treatments. These devices are highly alarming for every healthcare center because some medical apps are very important in providing aid to patients in an emergency. So, it is...

Hiring the Best of the Best: Main Skills Unreal Engine Developers Must Have

Why does finding the right Unreal Engine developer look like a search for a needle in a haystack? The demand for these specialists has skyrocketed, yet the supply often falls short. This disparity creates a challenging landscape for companies that seek to hire Unreal Engine developers. To find...

Elevating Content Creation: AI Video Editing Mastery Sets the Standard

In the fast-paced realm of digital content creation, staying ahead of the curve is not just a preference; it's a necessity. As businesses strive for compelling visual narratives, the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in video editing has emerged as a game-changer. This article delves into the...

Top 10 Ways AI is Enhancing Customer Experience

In today's world, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing the game in customer service. It's not just about using cool technology; it's about understanding customers better and giving them exactly what they need, even before they ask for it. From chatbots that answer questions at lightning speed to systems...