Login



For PLUS+ subscription assistance, contact customer service.

Not a PLUS+ Subscriber?

Become a PLUS+ Subscriber today and you'll get access to all Supply Chain Management Review premium content including:

  • Full Web Access
  • 7 Magazine Issues per Year
  • Companion Digital Editions
  • Digital Edition Archives
  • Bonus Email Newsletters

Subscribe Today!

Premium access to exclusive online content, companion digital editions, magazine issues and email newsletters.

Subscribe Now.


Become a PLUS+ subscriber and you'll get access to all Supply Chain Management Review premium content including:

  • Full Web Access. All feature articles, bonus reports and industry research through scmr.com.

  • 7 Magazine Issues per year of Supply Chain Management Review magazine.

  • Companion Digital Editions. Searchable replicas of each magazine issue. Read them in any web browser. Delivered by email faster than printed issues.

  • Digital Editions Archives. Every article, every chart and every table as it appeared in the magazine for all archive issues back to 2009.

  • Bonus email newsletters. Add convenient weekly and monthly email newsletters to your subscription to keep your finger on the pulse of the industry.

PLUS+ subscriptions start as low as $109/year*. Begin yours now.
That's less than $0.36 per day for access to information that you can use year-round to better manage your entire global supply chain.

For assistance with your PLUS+ subscription, contact customer service.

* Prices higher for subscriptions outside the USA.

PLUS+ Customer Service Support


Customer service for all PLUS+ subscribers is available Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm Eastern time.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 1-800-598-6067 (1-508-663-1500 x294 outside USA)
Mail: PO Box 1496, Framingham MA 01701-1496, USA



You have been logged out of PLUS+


For PLUS+ subscription assistance, contact customer service.

Need to access our premium PLUS+ Content?
Upgrade your subscription now.


Our records show that you are currently receiving a free subscription to Supply Chain Management Review magazine, or your subscription has expired. To access our premium content, you need to upgrade your subscription to our PLUS+ status.

To upgrade your subscription account, please contact customer service at:

Email: [email protected] Phone: 1-800-598-6067 (1-508-663-1500 x294 outside USA)

Become a PLUS+ subscriber and you'll get access to all Supply Chain Management Review premium content including:

  • Full Web Access. All feature articles, bonus reports and industry research through scmr.com.

  • 7 Magazine Issues per year of Supply Chain Management Review magazine.

  • Companion Digital Editions. Searchable replicas of each magazine issue. Read them in any web browser. Delivered by email faster than printed issues.

  • Digital Editions Archives. Every article, every chart and every table as it appeared in the magazine for all archive issues back to 2010.

  • Bonus email newsletters. Add convenient weekly and monthly email newsletters to your subscription to keep your finger on the pulse of the industry.

PLUS+ subscriptions start as low as $129/year*. Start yours now.
That's less than $0.36 per day for access to information that you can use year-round to better manage your entire global supply chain.

This content is available for PLUS+ subscribers.


Already a PLUS+ subscriber?


To begin or upgrade your subscription, Become a PLUS+ subscriber now.

For assistance with your PLUS+ subscription, contact customer service.

Sorry, but your login to PLUS+ has failed.


Please recheck your login information and resubmit below.



For PLUS+ subscription assistance, contact customer service.

Digital Trade Transformation: Ten Observations for 2018: Part III

Rise of Digital Matching

By ·
By ·

Editor’s Note: This is the third and final installment of a three-part forecast.

Rise of Digital Matching

There’s a big misconception about the future economy being based on “sharing” or “collaborating.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Companies like Airbnb and Uber do not share their assets – they perform the powerful and profitable task of matching capabilities to needs. They do it more precisely at a finer and smaller scale than traditional companies and they exchange their service for payment. In a world awash with options, value has shifted from traditional department store “making options available” to “help the customer decide on the best option.”

Observation 7: Shipping Paperwork Will Automate

Amazon continues its ambitious goal of becoming the king of deliveries. The company has quietly puts its expertise at matching supply with demand into ocean freight forwarding and trucking, where the company has created apps that are projected to create a new wave of efficiency gains. Currently, the trucking app, Relay, shows truckers where cargo is, it also shows the promise of automating shipping paperwork, which is highly reliant on phone and paper. Smart managers will watch for automation solutions, whether from Amazon or some other innovator.

Observation 8: Digital Requires Batteries

Ports and transport will receive new attention to their environmental impacts. In the U.S., transport recently overtook utilities for biggest polluter. A Pandora’s box of cheaper, greener power sources has passed the tipping point where the technologies make more sense – and the result will be a revolution as everyone seeks to cash in on the new efficiencies. China launched a battery powered ship which is used to haul coal. Tesla is talking about battery powered trucks although other truck manufacturers may be better positioned. The point is that the established players have bought into cleaner energy. It makes sense to spend less money on inputs that turn into soot and carbon dioxide – products that have no value. Digital matching services will provide shippers with more options to choose “greener” transportation, even those that don’t run on batteries. Smart managers will watch for greener options that make fiscal and operational sense over the medium term. Customers are less forgiving of short-term vision, yet surprisingly understanding of long-term risks.

Observation 9: You Are Always Observed

The trend toward total electronic integration will increase dramatically as there is simply too much benefit to society not to increase investments in the internet of things and the digital economy. It’s the only way that developed economies can compete globally, and developing nations seek to accelerate their equalization. Some examples include ELD (electronic logging devices) for U.S. trucking and “smart ports.” Companies may balk at the short-term costs, yet multiple benefits to security, environment and the bottom line argue that failing to act may be the greatest risk of all. It is also a powerful way for industry to integrate and coordinate with companies which make the most sense for them, instead of depending on volatile political processes to develop global trade treaties. Smart managers will actively engage with public-private initiatives as well as industry trade groups – successful companies will embrace the new world of openness. Those most open to transparency will likely attract the least attention.

Observation 10: Don’t Delay

Global logistics and trade compliance have traditionally relied on intransigence to provide stability. A culture focused on tradition and rules has provided stability in the face of political, economic and social changes. Technology has changed the equation – industry leaders must actively engage to establish new rules and traditions for how companies interact with other companies, governments and inter-governmental organizations. Companies that delay modernizing will find themselves in danger of irrelevance.

The breadth and scope of changes in store will over-whelm many managers. Supply chain leaders will wholeheartedly – but intelligently – buy into technology-based solutions. Those too timid to take the risk of making a mistake and starting over will lose out because the new wave of technology requires learning and co-creating solutions. The time to transform to digital has arrived!

 


About the Author

Michael Gravier
Michael Gravier is an Associate Professor of Marketing and Supply Chain Management at Bryant University with a focus on logistics, supply chain management and strategy and international trade. Follow Bryant University on Facebook and Twitter.

Subscribe to Supply Chain Management Review Magazine!

Subscribe today. Don't Miss Out!
Get in-depth coverage from industry experts with proven techniques for cutting supply chain costs and case studies in supply chain best practices.
Start Your Subscription Today!

Latest Whitepaper
Third Party Risk: Too Close for Comfort
You’ve got a handle on many of the potential supply chain "disrupters" that can paralyze your business. But the real risk is embedded in areas you may have overlooked.
Download Today!
From the December 2017
This is a comprehensive guide to services, products and educational opportunities targeted specifically to supply chain professionals. As with years past, we’re also featuring several articles we trust will offer food for thought in your supply chain throughout the coming year.
Transportation Trends: The last mile, history repeating
Economic Outlook: A Complex and Uneven Scenario for Global Supply Chains
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!


Latest Webcast
The Perfect Formula for Determining the Right Amount of Inventory
This webcast explains how the science of theoretical minimums, a new approach to inventory optimization, provides a simple and elegant way to reduce cost and increase customer service levels by monetizing time delays across the extended supply chain.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
Oracle Modern Supply Chain Experience Promises to Address Key Industry Issues
In many cases, system and data from different vendors are integrated frequently, in different...
Atradius Issues New Report on Supply Chain Risk in North America
The U.S. shows strong economic performance, but the looming risk that leadership in Washington will...

2018: The year we make meaningful progress on digital transformation
Perhaps it would have been better to describe it as a digital evolution – more of an ongoing...
Industrial and Supply Chain Real Estate Expected to Soar in 2018
Strong economy and insatiable demand for online shopping behind industrial real estate resurgence