Technology plays an integral role in the success of supply chain management. Even though the supply chain concept pre-dates the Internet, only through the use of web-based software and communication can it truly reach its full potential. Before the Internet, companies were limited because they were not able to receive or to send updates, feedback, or other important information in a timely fashion.
One of the biggest benefits technology has given to the supply chain concept is the ability for companies to collaborate. These collaborations are designed for the mutual benefit of all parties. For example, a supplier of consumer goods may be linked up via the Internet to one of its distributors so that when the supply gets too low an order for more of those goods can be placed automatically. In this way, the distributor never has to worry about running out of a product and disappointing customers and the supplier doesn’t have to worry about maintaining a large inventory in expectation of demand. Similar systems have also been constructed to send out multiple requests to vendors when an order is placed. Collaborating this way makes better use of existing resources and paves the way for a larger profit margin on all sides of the equation.
Complete paper: The Role of Technology in Supply Chain Management