Mobile technology makes it easier to stay connected on both business and personal levels. Companies are already using mobile apps to check inventory, pricing, and distribution information, but some global leaders are taking mobile computing innovation to new levels in supply chain management.
Supply Chain Apps in Healthcare
Novation is a Texas-based company that supplies products to more than 30,000 healthcare professionals throughout the US. Novation’s new mobile app, developed by MicroStrategy, gives supply chain managers and executives real-time access to inventory levels, order status, current pricing, and market trends. Melinda Gardner, vice president of information and data services at Novation, said, “The ability to get clear, believable and reliable data in real-time is a benefit to both providers and vendors in the negotiation process.” The app will also boost supply chain transparency in the healthcare industry by allowing physicians to play a role in SCM.
Freight Quotes on the Go
SAP, a popular procurement software solutions provider, has a comprehensive collection of mobile apps to make logistics management easier. Users can check routes and addresses, respond to RFQs, and contact vendors directly through the app. An integrated calendar is also included. Echo Global Logistics offers a similar mobile app for logistics management, along with several other companies.
Supply Chain Apps for Consumers
In the business-to-business sector of the supply chain, mobile apps are becoming commonplace. McDonald’s Australia is one of the first companies to use mobile technology to get the end-user involved in the supply chain. The free app, available for iPhone and iPad, uses GPS technology, photo recognition software, and real-time tracking methods to tell the user exactly where the ingredients in their meal originated. “The story on your phone changes depending on where you are in the country and who supplies that restaurant. Along the way, you can even meet the real farmers, bakers or fisherman who source our ingredients for us.”
The future of supply chain management is full of possibilities as technological advancements continue to open the door to new strategies and tools. It’s likely that companies will develop more supply chain apps geared toward consumers in the months ahead.
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