Supply chains are becoming more and more digital, thanks to digital technology-powered processes, approaches and tools. As the digital supply network (DSN) becomes much faster, more granular, and much more precise, we are observing greater efficiency and ability for companies to be able to complete processes quicker.
Currently, there are three digital technologies identified as disrupting not only the fashion industry’s traditional business model but also its supply chain; they are Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Everything (IoE) and cloud-based mobility. Giving companies the opportunity to alter their conventional ways of working, we are witnessing many fashion supply chains leveraging digital supply chain business models and going digital.
The Rise of the Interconnected Age
In 2016, McKinsey’s State of Fashion report identified that the interconnectedness of the fashion ecosystem is important because it addresses the factors shaping and driving fashion today. The report stressed that when one part of the ecosystem changes it affects all the other parts. So when it comes to the rise of the digital supply network, Deloitte, a company known for providing industry insights and services, published a series that examined how supply chains are changing from a static sequence to an interconnected system also known as a digital supply network. “As smart automation, coupled with techniques of cognitive and machine learning, are becoming more mainstream, most organizations are looking to find as many applications as possible to optimize their day-to-day operations. At the same time, other changes are taking place as well, shifting the expectations for the skills, training, and capabilities that could be most relevant for supply network roles,” stated the report.
As advanced manufacturing practices continue to evolve, Mark Burstein, President of NGC Software, told Sourcing Journal: “A digital supply chain platform is one of the foundational elements in making sure brands and retailers are part of that top 20%”. Adding: “By connecting disparate enterprises and enabling companies to react quickly and effectively, they can help drive continued growth, profitability and relevance to consumers”.
Below are five fashion tech platforms making it possible to transform your fashion supply chain:
Reinventing the fashion supply chain, New Jersey-based fashion tech company Suuchi has come up with a next-gen software, the Suuchi GRID. Developed to create a streamlined and transparent global supply chain for a fashion brand, the GRID’s intuitive user interface and collaborative features connect teams to eliminate siloed workflows and empower data-backed decision-making.
Designed to suit brands of all sizes who have yet to modernize their supply chain with technology, Suuchi affirms: “We work with brands, retailers, and factories of all sizes to digitize and streamline their supply chains with end-to-end visibility, real-time updates, and collaborative communication.”
Zilingo is a technology platform that has been designed to power the entire fashion supply chain. Using smart, technology-led solutions to “bridge the gap between creators and producers”, Zilingo was founded by Ankiti Bose and Dhruv Kapoor in 2015. The founders found a way to re-imagine the fashion supply chain and make it fair, connected and transparent for all.
“The fashion industry is exploitative, wasteful and, frankly, completely broken,” said Bose to WWD. “We’re a technology company at heart, and firmly believe in the power of technology to improve business and the world. We’re bringing technology to a supply chain that hasn’t changed since the industrial revolution. Zilingo levels the playing field in fashion so that businesses – no matter how big or small – can have access to a fair, transparent, affordable, fast supply chain.”
HUUB is an end-to-end omni-channel tech solution that is all about the future of logistics. On a mission to connect everything from suppliers to the final customer, HUUB’s plug & play Supply Chain Ecosystem manages the entire logistics of fashion brands and converts data into business insights to boost a fashion company’s growth.
The good news is that the 360º end-to-end solution has found a way to connect the supply to demand with decision making support and simplified processes, in one centralized and integrated point of information. On Spoke, their technology platform, they explain: “[With] one collaborative platform connects the whole chain at your fingertip. The same access point grants full visibility in the present and business insights through artificial intelligence to shape the future. With Spoke, you’re able to control and optimize your supply chain”.
Streamlining the fashion supply chain is CALA. The New York-based company has developed an all-in-one collaboration tool intended for use within the fashion production industry. Empowering fashion brands, CALA has come up with a tool that “connects a user-friendly design interface with a curated production network”.
On building and scaling your fashion brand, the CALA website declares: “We provide everything you could need. Design assistance. Material sourcing. Sampling. With powerful features like in-app notifications, task management, and real-time commenting”. So if you are looking for a fashion design tool that will take you from initial ideation to production and fulfillment, then CALA could be for you.
Powering the Digital Supply Chain for retailers and brands, is NGC’s Andromeda, a cloud-based Supply Chain Management (SCM) solution created to enable the speed and responsiveness for today’s demand-driven supply chain. According to NGC, they have designed Andromeda specifically for the needs of apparel, fashion and footwear brands and retailers. The cloud platform has key benefits like compressing purchasing lead times, improving order fulfilment rates and reducing product defects.
In a press release, Burstein, president of NGC said, “We transform businesses with NGC’s digital supply chain solutions, allowing them to become more agile, responsive and customer-focused.”
Deloitte predicts that the future of manufacturing will most likely involve people working alongside technology or robots if they are not already working alongside them today. So the question now is, are you ready to embrace the new wave of digitization of the supply chain?