A data model is fundamental for all digital systems. You need it for your network optimization system. Your planning system. Different control towers, command centers. You name it. Some companies hesitate to implement tech tools like a digital supply chain twin to build a real-time, end-to-end data model, fearing that resource constraints within the team make it a non-starter. But I’m happy to tell you that the fear is unfounded. A digital supply chain twin will, in practice, actually save your resources time.
Where has the time gone?
At companies that have yet to implement a digital supply chain twin, stakeholders across the value chain are forced to use a significant amount of their time to manually configure the data model for their digital systems. Their hours are often eaten up integrating their digital systems based on ERP master data, which is often not entirely accurate or end-to-end.
And within operational excellence teams, employees can spend hours upon hours on recurring manual diagnostics phases, seeking to identify potential improvement areas. In addition to spending considerable time in diagnostics phases, these stakeholders also need to take hours out of their days to follow-up and monitor activities for which manual reports are often built.
→ This time spend can be drastically reduced with an end-to-end digital supply chain twin, as diagnostics and the monitoring of the improvements that get implemented are included within the tool. This also means there’s no longer a need to build a manual report.
Recouping time for your stakeholders
A digital supply chain twin like Axon can and does deliver significant value for the various stakeholders within your company. Here are five resources in your supply chain and what they stand to get out of a digital twin:
- E2E planner: Access to true end-to-end visibility on their brands and planning parameters.
- Master data lead: Data standardization across sites and departments.
- Operational excellence lead: Ability to follow up on operational performance and identify improvement projects.
- Finance: Visibility on “hidden” supply chain elements, including inventory in transit.
- QA/QC: Ability to have data-driven alignment with planning and finance departments.
Let me add a sixth resource to the list, complaint manager. What’s the benefit to this role, and therefore, to your supply chain? Well, if they get a complaint on a product, they can utilize Axon to see where this product or specific batch was produced or from where it was procured. The digital twin end-to-end connected data model is available to figure out what went wrong and where. They can use the information at hand to inform the right people to investigate. Being able to identify issues and solve them quickly is an incontrovertible value add for any supply chain stakeholder.
You might be thinking, great, a digital supply chain twin could ultimately give valuable time back to our resources, but what about the time cost of implementing such a tool? A valid, but unnecessary concern. The implementation of Axon is not resource intensive. Key stakeholders are mostly involved at the start of a new engagement to provide information on the key characteristics of their supply chain and at the end of the build to validate the results. During the actual build, the amount of interaction is kept to a minimum, as the Axon Process Mining Engine enables the data to speak for itself. Your supply chain’s data is truly in capable hands.
Streamlining your supply chain
Yes, the time-saving properties of a digital twin can be felt on an individual level across your supply chain, by the people powering it. But now, I’d like to offer you a wider view. Companies in the supply chain space are working on big deployments of sizable ERP or APS systems, including S4/Hana. A digital supply chain twin model like Axon’s can accelerate these efforts, serving as an enabler to feed different data models. This is how:
- Our digital twin’s output is based on true transactional data, which describes what happened in reality. It tells you when and where in your supply chain a product is produced, procured or shipped.
- It is continuously up to date, another key to getting accurate, timely data.
- It allows you to connect outcomes, plans, actions, decisions, etc., from the different digital systems in place, as they will all speak the same supply chain language.