Until a few years ago, let's say until the end of the 10s, the Supply Chain was seen solely as a cost center and the only objective of those dedicated to its management was to ensure that the movement of goods took place without problems and at the lowest possible cost.
In essence, it was a question of managing a service and few recognized its value, all concentrated on identifying savings opportunities in the manufacturing area (think of the rush to offshoring production, towards the Far East or India).
Then came the globalization crisis, the recognition that it was necessary to shorten supply chains and Covid, which represented the moment of maximum expansion for this trend.
Today, the value of the Supply Chain is finally recognized and work is being done to best express its potential and competitive value.
For example, the need to define top management professionals with greater decision-making autonomy and correct alignment at the same level with respect to the Sales part, the Operations part and the entire value chain was understood. Add to this the technological transformation and the investments that are being made in this area, in particular to obtain greater visibility.
But the key to this process of change are People.
In recent years, a lot has been invested in solutions for the efficiency of the physical management of goods. The data, however, is increasingly important. The fact of having an increasingly large amount of data thanks to the IoT and – thanks to the ever faster internet – having the possibility of using data in the cloud and in real time is an invaluable resource.
The People, the right ones and in possession of the aptitude and competence requisites necessary to make the best use of the amount of information available, will allow Supply Chain management to evolve until it becomes a business enabler.
Whoever starts first will acquire a competitive advantage that his competitors will fill only in a not very small number of years.