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4 Supply Chain Predictions for 2022

by Mary Rooney | Jan 12, 2022

Article from Forbes

While many of the supply chain issues that arose in 2021 are expected to continue to impact operations in 2022, companies have developed the ability to adapt business models and supply chains to deal with a high degree of volatility and disruption. Moving into 2022, it's anticipated companies will transition from “survive” to “thrive” mode as many shift from managing risk and disruption to exploring growth opportunities.

While it's difficult to know what will happen in this volatile supply chain market, here are four predictions for 2022.

1. Continued Supply Chain Issues
The current supply chain landscape is not going to fix itself immediately. The global paper and plastic shortage is spilling over into the new year, driving down the stock of items like straws and food packaging. The manufacturing, transportation and warehousing industries are struggling to find workers, which directly impacts supply chain operations. This means continued order delays, supply shortages and potentially unhappy distributors, retailers and consumers.

2. Automation To Fill The Labor Gap
In 2021, warehouse managers and leaders continued investing in automation technology to perform tasks such as inventory counts and product restocking. Additionally, there is an increase of automation paired with artificial intelligence (AI) to complete more complex tasks, such as self-driving trucking and analyzing workflows.

Since businesses are implementing automation for more strategic and complex initiatives, the technologies can also be used to aid the understaffed workforce. Automation will not replace the need for human workers, but rather complement human activity in warehousing, trucking and other industries along the supply chain. It is no surprise that warehouse automation software and systems are anticipated to become a $47.4 billion market by 2023

3. An Even Greater Emphasis On Security
Cybercrime is evolving, and it does not appear to be abating anytime soon. In 2021, businesses saw a 10% increase in the average cost of a data breach and a record-high number of data compromises. As many organizations continue to operate in a hybrid environment, security remains top of mind. Many legacy ways of protecting data are no longer enough to maintain secure operations, especially in remote or hybrid workplace environments. 

4. Increased Spending On Supply Chain Technology
Nearly half of supply chain leaders increased spending on technologies such as predictive analytics and AI during the pandemic. Spending will likely continue in 2022 considering the operational efficiency it provides and its other time-tested benefits.

Over the past several years, many organizations turned to cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for a more secure and reliable way to map out and oversee supply chain operations. Mobile support for ERP solutions is becoming ubiquitous, especially as organizations continue to operate in a remote or hybrid environment. 2021 underscored the ability to access critical information in real time, from anywhere.

Read more at Forbes.com


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