The year 2020 will undoubtedly go down in history as unique and one-of-a-kind. Whether it is COVID-19 or the insurmountable number of effects as a direct result of the virus itself, I think it is safe to say that the world has changed – meaning that we must adapt! Local retailers and national grocery stores alike are no exception to this newly-found rule, so they too must adapt and overcome this new landscape with new supply chain technology.
As a prior district manager for a Fortune 500 organization in the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industry, “Speed-to-Shelf” capabilities of various retailers reigned supreme; if you failed to keep your shelves stocked during the ‘panic’ period of the pandemic, then you were effectively missing out on unprecedented growth only seen once per generation. Non-essential businesses struggled during the infancy of the pandemic, while grocery stores and supermarket giants alike remained open and covered the gap in demand. But what about the B2B backend supply chain networks? How did they fair for those retailers deemed essential? And what have they learned along the way?
Technology Giving An Edge
Microsoft Azure has stepped up to the plate as nearly “77% of retailers plan to deploy AI by the end of the year ” to assist in their supply chain bolstering efforts (Cloudblogs). In procurement departments across the world, employees were finding innovative ways to source everyday-ingredients, optimize raw material allocation for the highest velocity products, and form relationships with suppliers/contractors they had no idea existed prior to the pandemic. With Request for Proposals (RFPs) as the industry-leading formal document for vetting and prospecting potential supplier relationships, Catapult is the ideal complement to the Microsoft Azure AI in grocer stores, supermarkets, and connected CPG organizations. With an industry-agnostic RFP solution like Catapult, B2B relationships in 2021 will rid themselves of “RFP Fatigue” and look to their procurement department as true profit centers of their organization(s), allowing ingredient sourcing is automated and archived appropriately within the platform. Automated workflow and data aggregation are imperative in the era of technology, so why not bolster your supply chain with RFPs?
National Sales Director