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Vector ITC outlines 6 tech trends in retail supply chain.

Discover the 6 technological trends in the retail sector's supply chain highlighted by Vector-ITC.

31 august, 2020. – The pandemic caused by Covid-19 has meant a period of review of two essential areas in particular: new consumer habits and the technological challenges that companies have to face. The focus of the organizations to face the uncertainty of the period called “new normality”, is in the mitigation of the possible disruptions of the supply chain through technology. The digital evolution and transformation is the present in the face of the change of paradigm and for this reason Vector ITC, an international technological and digital group, proposes the necessary solutions to be prepared to face the challenges that the new contexts will present.

The panorama of the retail sector is going to be determined by the uncertainty of a second wave of contagion. The economic recession will become evident after the crisis produced by the Covid-19 and a reduction in consumption due to the lack of confidence on the part of the consumer in his or her income in the medium term. These challenges, in addition to the costs related to adapting the retail sector to the rules of the pandemic, have affected its margins. For example, according to Target’s CEO, Brian Cornell, during the first quarter of 2020, costs related to pandemic activities represented an expenditure of $500 million.

In this complex environment, the retail sector must make contingency plans and evolve its technology transformation to maintain operating margins. Retailers need to streamline their purchasing processes, both online and offline, in order to be prepared to respond to changes and needs as the pandemic evolves. The increased use of digital will require the sector to increase its investment in omnicanality capabilities.

Technological trends in Digital Supply Chain & Retail:

  1. Hyperautomation: Allows companies to optimise processes, speeding up sophisticated tasks, coordinating processes and allocating resources efficiently; in this way, there is constant innovation. In addition, it can be complemented with process automation through RPA, allowing staff to focus on higher value-added tasks. Hyper-automation stands out at several points in the supply chain: inventory management, shipment confirmation, use of robots or digital assistants.
  2. Combination of AI and LC: Technologies such as AI and LC complement the professional experience of employees to hyperautomate processes, allowing a wide variety of variables to be analysed simultaneously for decision making. It allows for intelligent decision making in disruptive or changing situations, incorporating the latest information available for carrying out proposals.
  3. Transparency and traceability: Transparency and traceability refers to the set of practices and technologies designed to preserve the ethical and legal approach to the use of AI, used to automate processes and predict changes in consumer behaviour, thus adapting its services.
  4. User experience and omnicanality: With the rise of online commerce or e-commerce, speeding up the digital transformation is an imperative. The user experience browsing the web or application should be intuitive, agile and pleasant, for this, the consumer has to get an optimal purchase process since entering the e-commerce, locate the desired products, process the purchase and receive it at home. The omnicanality is key in the user experience by the interaction that this develops with products and services.
  5. Technology to streamline operations and processes: Big data, Internet of Things (IoT), voice recognition, RFID.

Organizations must be able to measure and monitor market changes affecting the supply chain. Also, they must establish models that facilitate the monitoring of internal indicators linked to the supply chain that are out of line, in order to manage them in an agile way. The digital transformation is no longer the future, it is a necessary present to generate predictive models that help evaluate essential situations, allowing the organisation to make intelligent decisions quickly and efficiently,”, says Anna Coca, Ágora’s Retail Director.

We can categorically state that this crisis has acted as an accelerator of the processes and trends expected to be reached in the coming years. Since these were objectives that already existed before the pandemic and have proved their value in guaranteeing the continuity of the activity, they will become permanent and structural changes. The ability to adapt to new consumption habits and the potential constraints that will be placed on us if new outbreaks return to more or less restricted states of confinement will be key to mitigating disruption and building resilience in the supply chain.

For more information, see and download our White Paper on Digital Supply Chain & Retail here (content in Spanish).

Karen Liedl
Softtek PR
+1 763-291-1464