Companies operating with various types of supply chain models are continuing to experience an array of data integrity challenges due to siloed systems and a lack of visibility. These complications translate to “supply chain gridlock” for many companies, at a time when they really need greater efficiency, transparency, and security in the face of today’s security risks and economic uncertainty.
Within larger enterprises, data is typically spread across multiple, separate systems and departments. Even when stakeholders can locate the data they need, it is not “actionable” or easy to sort and query, since the systems are not integrated. Supply chain data needs to flow seamlessly across departments and systems, while still offering secure access with custom dashboards for each role, such as a customer service representative who just needs to check inventory levels.
Many leaders don’t fully understand that simply focusing on integrating technical systems into a single supply chain network often increases fragility, whereas true data interoperability is a game-changer that creates greater resiliency. For example, integrating point-to-point solutions allows data to pass from one system to another, but it’s more of a “handoff” that flows like bumper-to-bumper traffic in a busy city.
Blockchain has emerged as a foundational database framework that allows for the true integration of data sets, allowing information to flow more like a super-highway. Systems built on blockchain are highly efficient, providing permissioned access to everyone without compromising security. Data can be queried and analyzed to anticipate needs and provide far better forecasting. Smart contract functions can automate activities as milestones or specific conditions are met.
From financial data to customer records, information stored in a blockchain is trusted by all parties because nothing can be deleted, and every change leaves an audit trail. The data is subject to a high level of encryption, and it is duplicated across a distributed network, not stored on a single server – making tampering or unauthorized access without detection virtually impossible. Blockchain is the foundational trusted data-sharing layer that can support this need for embedded trust across an enterprise and beyond.
Gray Matters’ Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform, Maverix, is built on a foundation of blockchain and delivers on all the benefits outlined above to eliminate supply chain gridlock. It gives companies visibility, accountability, security, and complete control across their supply chains. The Maverix technology can often be incorporated into existing systems, saving significant time and money by avoiding a complete “rip and replace” solution.