The pendulum swings

Requirements for resilience change the role of IoT.

Most supply chain / IoT success stories focus on the materials we are moving from place to place. Keeping track of the assets, reducing loss, providing something close to real time visibility. But in truth, these are still mostly the same stories we have been telling our selves since the emergence of RFiD in the late 1990’s. Remember how RFiD was going to revolutionize Walmart’s supply chain? While RFiD is an essential foundational element in most Supply chain IoT programs, it is a foundational element. It’s NFC based complexities insure that it is just one step up from the scanned bar codes used by so many.

Real advances in our understanding of our supply chains require that we focus less on the movement of the assets or inventory, and more on understanding the process driving that outcome. The most valuable components of a contemporary IoT solution may well be the emerging digital twin technologies. The opportunity to utilize machine learning techniques on large volumes of actual process data and outcomes coupled with new opportunities to include contextual, environmental, and business data will allow us to reach new levels of understanding.

Scott Lundstrom

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