Logistics in the cloud: Digital transformation at its finest

As cloud-based systems become commonplace, supply chain organizations are beginning to realize the benefit of using these kinds of tools to facilitate smooth operations and drive better bottom lines. A 2014 survey conducted by SCM World found that supply chain managers said the cloud was improving supply chain performance across the board, and that sentiment stands in today’s increasingly connected supply chain landscape.

There is plenty of room left for the cloud to grow within these organizations. In fact, the SCM World survey found that only 12 percent of companies have “extensive” communications within their networks, drawing attention to the fact that the cloud still has work to do in this area. Collaboration is one of the biggest benefits of cloud computing, with 72 percent of enterprise IT managers citing it as the driving factor behind cloud adoption, according to the Harvard Business Review Analytic Services, and cloud-based logistics tools can help organizations plan, track and analyze the various steps in their operations.

Scalable logistics

One aspect of supply chain management that operators have to accommodate is scalability. Supply & Demand Chain Executive contributor and Vice President of Growth at UNA Purchasing Solutions Anthony Clervi noted that scalable solutions are a key advantage of having a cloud-based supply chain operation, simply because as businesses grow, their IT requirements rapidly evolve.

“As business needs change, your existing IT systems must evolve to provide the necessary resources to meet those needs,” Clervi wrote. “Cloud services allow you to scale without having to overhaul an entire system. Even if your company expands rapidly, a cloud provider has the off-site computing power to accommodate your needs.”

By investing in the right technology, organizations can drive better bottom lines.By investing in the right technology, organizations can drive better bottom lines.


Digital transformation in action

Entering the digital world and adopting cloud-based tools is going to be hugely important for organizations that want to stay on top of the curve and create a competitive advantage in their particular industries. According to a white paper published earlier this year by World Economic Forum, digital transformation could bring $1.5 trillion to the table for logistics players and $2.4 trillion worth of societal benefits, up until 2025. In other words, logistics organizations can generate revenue and drive better bottom lines by investing in the right technologies.

SupplyChain247 contributor Jamie Wyatt noted that by incorporating a cloud-based logistics solution, organizations can enjoy real-time pricing and inventory updates, which allows them to control costs and accurately analyze supply and demand without having to wait for key insights. Even small savings in terms of pricing changes are considered wins for the supply chain, so having real-time analysis into this data is crucial. An additional benefit of cloud solutions would be the marrying of warehouse management and transportation management systems into one coordinated solution.

Logistics modules like Oracle Transportation Management or Inspirage’s Rapid Start: OTM in the Cloud solution can have an impact on your supply chain operation. For more information about how cloud-based solutions can improve supply chain performance, check out our webinar below and get in touch with the experts at Inspirage today.

Scott Pulczinski

Scott Pulczinski | Key Contributor

Scott Pulczinski is a Solutions Manager for the Logistics Management practice at Inspirage. Scott has 17 years experience in the transportation and consulting industries. He has been working with OTM for the past 12 years as both a Solution Architect and Project Manager.