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The Importance of Supply Chain Visibility

March 6, 2023

Courtesy of David Brosky, Transportation Insight – Director, Strategic Sales

Every day, I connect with businesses of all sizes about their logistics operations. My goal is to understand each of my clients’ most pressing issues in the logistics space and help create a solution to address them. One of the most common issues that I hear is the ability for companies to easily and accurately obtain insightful data about their supply chains.

Three very important parts about supply chain data are ensuring it is insightful, easily obtained and accurate.

Insightful, easily obtained, accurate

Having insightful data about your supply chain is critical for the health of your business. First, data without context is unusable. You can have well-kept spreadsheets and paper documents of all your shipments from the last year. But if you don’t have the data in a form that is relevant to your business and easy to read, it’s nearly impossible to know what it means for your business.

The most common issues center around the last two points. They partially go hand-in-hand because without data that is easily obtained and accurate, you cannot gain actionable insight from it. To make better business decisions, you need to be able to gather the right data. Many times, C-suite executives have a hard time getting the data they are looking for to measure their logistics strategy performance. Small to mid-sized businesses typically do not have a centralized data warehouse where the data can be easily accessed. When they finally get the data, it is often not accurate or complete.

Many of the businesses I talk with do not have easy access to relevant supply chain information such as freight spend summaries, carrier scorecards to track performance and freight savings opportunities. When a big decision needs to be made, it is vital that the decision-makers have the data at their fingertips. Time is money, and a lot of time is wasted on accessing the right data.

Data-based decisions are only as good as the data behind them. That is why it is so important that the data you collect is accurate. Many companies manually collect their logistics data, which leaves room for error. Decisions based on inaccurate data can drive your business in a completely different direction than you intend. By automating the data collection process, you can be confident in the accuracy of the data behind your decisions.

The ability to obtain insightful information about your supply chain easily and accurately is crucial in improving decision-making that will drive positive bottom-line results for your business. Partnering with a logistics company that can help with data collection and reporting will give you the necessary tools to remain profitable through the ebbs and flows of the logistics market.

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