April 16 2020

Suppy-Chain Visibility: The Barriers and Benefits

In recent years, Supply Chains have undergone huge changes in terms of novel digitisation and the globalised scale of linked operations. These changes have both increased the scale each business and chain works on, as well as the barriers to efficiency that expansion causes.

GEODIS released a Survey report in 2017, collecting insights from 623 Supply Chain professionals regarding weaknesses and necessary progressions:

__The Survey found that only 6% of businesses had full visibility over their operations. Furthermore, 70% described their chain as either ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ complex. __

Given the intricate nature of each Chain and the elaborate processing that occurs to get goods from source to customer, the research suggests an urgent need for development and logistical improvements to optimise each chain’s efficiency.

A Customer-Centric Industry

The focus of most businesses’ efforts is now on the end consumer. Chain communications are less linear nowadays, and dialogue flows to and from both ends of each chain.

The digital developments in communications have granted this development, yet visibility still remains an unclear barrier to maximum productivity, and the GEODIS report suggested that visibility is one of the most important factors of supply-chain management.

Why is Visibility so important?


Greater visibility and intercommunication between chain links means each business can access data surrounding inventories, warehouses, timings and more, so they can make more informed decisions and take the appropriate steps to ensure their processes are efficient, and the needs of the chain as a single entity are met. Improved visibility also means inefficiencies can be eliminated and costs can be managed, meaning unnecessary losses are avoided.

Customer Satisfaction

Keeping the customer informed through each stage of the order process not only means they can plan their operations better, but it also improves credibility and security between links. Technologies which enable a seamless delivery schedule means quicker deliveries, fewer delays and more satisfied customers. Trackability and traceability of goods improves security and also ensures that if delays do occur, each party is updated as & when they occur.

Reducing error and risk

The key benefit of having extensive data and insights, more of the time, is that it enables more informed planning, which reduces risk, particularly with globalised chain links. Digital insights let businesses pinpoint areas of weakness so they can be improved, and nowadays, there is no shortage of logistics solutions which grant data insights which are easy-to-digest.

Digital Developments

Developments over the last few years have resulted in a greater availability of Systems that can give you better visibility and more insights into operations. Improving technologies have improved the accessibility of visibility dramatically, and this can be offered on single systems, without the need for a number of separate integrations to give a business the data they need.

Many Systems nowadays can:

*"deliver predictive visibility, track fleet in real-time, keep customers updated on delivery proceedings and more"


With each link of a Supply Chain having a better view of processes and performance, they can communicate between one another and form a tight, secure collaborative effort. This ensures goods are delivered quicker, and the productivity of the chain, end-to-end, can be optimized. Finally, this means the customer can have their demands met, and feedback loops can be created to allow the chain to consistently evolve and improve.

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