Importance of digital transformation in distribution

Rodrigo Campos, COO of Hyke explains that with digitalisation rolling out in the every sphere of life,  it has not even spared the distribution business and we need to understand how can one manage the disruption and improve operational efficency by tracking the progress of their supply chain in real-time

The digital transformation of business is resulting in a new era of competition, where the traditional rules no longer apply. Digital platforms are disrupting the distribution landscape, changing how customers discover and purchase products. This significantly impacts supply chains as businesses race to keep up with customer demand. To stay competitive, businesses need to understand the importance of digital transformation in distribution. They must also learn how to manage the disruptive supply chain that results from this transformation.

Digital distribution platforms provide a direct link between B2B parties such as retailers and distributors, simplifying the whole process and removing the frictions that traditionally existed. The digital transformation of distribution is also resulting in a shift from mass production to on-demand manufacturing. This is because businesses can now receive orders directly and then use digital platforms to connect with manufacturing partners who can produce the products on demand. This new model eliminates the need for extensive finished goods inventories, contributing to significant cost savings for businesses.

Supply chain management is also being transformed by digital technology. Historically, end-to-end visibility has been a limited, resulting in difficulties to deliver fully on the benefits of a just-in-time framework. This made it challenging to manage inventory and often resulted in stockouts or other disruptions. Digital transformation is pivotal to managing disruptive supply chains. Digital supply chain management tools like Hyke, an AI-based distribution application, now provide real-time visibility into the entire supply chain, from raw materials to finished goods.

By digitising distribution channels, businesses can promptly ensure that goods are delivered on demand. This allows businesses to quickly identify and solve problems, ensuring that products are always available when customers want them. Digital transformation continues to have a significant impact on the way businesses operate and helping businesses to improve efficiencies and optimize their operations. Those who don’t adapt will quickly fall behind.

The digital age has brought several changes to how businesses operate. Digital distribution platforms have several advantages over traditional methods of distribution. One critical advantage of digital distribution platforms is that they offer a more efficient and cost-effective way to manage the supply chain. By using digital tools to track inventory levels and customer demand, businesses can pivot in real time to avoid costly disruptions and seize opportunities when demand outstrips supply, providing competitive advantage.

Digital distribution platforms also offer a more efficient way to reach customers and by using digital channels, businesses can target their marketing and advertising to specific audiences, increasing sales and customer loyalty. Despite the advantages of digital distribution platforms, there are a number of challenges that businesses must overcome to reap the benefits fully.

Businesses reliant on distribution today face a dilemma, where to spend their capital to secure competitive advantage in the digital age? For traditional distributors and their suppliers, it can be a minefield with a lot of complexity, interdependency and can require significant investment. Additionally, businesses that invest in the development of their own digital tools must ensure that they are secure and compliant with data privacy regulations. They need to have the right mix of digital and traditional channels to reach all their potential customers. The rewards however are evident, by investing in the right digital tools and distribution platforms, businesses can improve their efficiency, reach more customers, and avoid costly disruptions.

In the theatre of globalisation, resource limitations, virus outbreaks and political tensions are not confined by borders. Business resilience has been proven to correlate to the level of digitalisation and so the adoption of B2B ecommerce has increased exponentially in recent years and is forecast to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Digital transformation is pivotal to the efficient management of distribution and supply chains. By digitising the distribution process, businesses can quickly adapt to changes in demand and take more informed decisions regarding other disruptions. By providing real-time data on the status of the supply chain, digital platforms can help businesses make the necessary adjustments to keep their operations running smoothly.

Wholesalers, distributors, manufacturers, and retailers can use real-time data from a digital platform to identify trends and patterns that will assist them in improving their operations significantly by tracking the progress of their supply chains in real-time. Automating the entire process also minimises human error and delays while also saving money. For example, HYKE’s app-based AI-powered digital distribution platform assists B2B organizations in the Middle East in identifying market restrictions and empowering them with intelligent insights and innovative solutions to overcome and surpass them. Moreover, it allows all stakeholders to be adaptive and maintain an in depth understanding of their customers’ ever-changing demands.

Digital transformation has been a game-changer for businesses, and those who have not adapted are struggling to keep up. Many companies are still relying on outdated methods to manage their supply chains, which are no longer effective in today’s digital world, leading to sub-optimal outputs and wasted resources. With the digital transformation of supply chains, businesses can now use platforms that are designed to streamline the entire process. From connecting suppliers and partners in one place to help identify any lurking problems beforehand, the potential of digital distribution platforms to help businesses is unlimited.