Research Reveals Business Leaders See a Critical Risk Mitigation and Cost Savings Opportunity as Supply Chains Stabilize

In the post-pandemic reset, shippers look to prevent future disruptions by optimizing supply chain business models and improving response velocity.

CHICAGO, Sept. 27, 2023 — Supply chains have largely recovered from the chaos and disruption linked to the spread of COVID-19, but global business leaders are determined to ensure no future black swan events cause pandemic-level impact, according to supply chain executives, directors and managers surveyed for a new IDC white paper* sponsored by project44, the leading supply chain visibility platform. To avoid future disruptions, leaders are prioritizing optimization initiatives that improve end-to-end visibility and response velocity to drive more agile performance and address business-critical risks. The Q1 2023 survey explored supply chain trends and challenges related to leveraging data, automation, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to improve visibility and response velocity.

More than 1,000 respondents across multiple industries participated, including supply chain executives, directors and managers representing businesses with revenue of $100 million up to more than $1 billion in 14 countries located in the North America, Latin America, EMEA and APAC regions.

C-suite respondents ranked supply chain optimization to reduce costs as a top priority over the next 12 months. When asked where the greatest opportunity to optimize supply chains lies, respondents identified the ability to react more quickly when disruptions occur. Strikingly, this sentiment held true across all verticals, including automotive, industrial manufacturing, life sciences, retail, CPG, food & beverage, oil & gas, industrial chemical and building materials. Other key findings from the white paper:

  • There are huge opportunities to improve velocity: More than half of companies surveyed recognize that sharing information in a structured digital format improves supply chain performance and velocity, but less than half of logistics data is currently shared in that manner.
  • Lack of operational visibility is costly: Almost a third of survey respondents said the companies their companies overpay for logistics or lost sales/revenue due to lack of operational visibility in the supply chain.
  • Real-time visibility enables supply chains to harness advanced technology: Real-time visibility supports the use of automation, streamlined workflows, AI/ML, etc., to eliminate manual errors, reduce workloads and improve decision making at every stage of the journey.
  • Companies are investing in visibility solutions despite economic uncertainty: More than 72% of surveyed organizations are increasing visibility investments or holding them steady.

“Although taxed by constant incidents and friction like the current drought in the Panama Canal, supply chain economies have seen an adjustment back to pre-pandemic conditions” said Michael Cucchi, SVP, Product Marketing, project44. “That’s why leaders are taking this opportunity to improve response velocity and cost efficiency — so they avoid ever seeing Covid-era failures, costs, and lost sales. It’s not possible without advanced real-time visibility combined with next-generation machine learning and automation.”

“Having a better understanding of key trends we’re seeing in supply chain technology is necessary to increase response velocity and accuracy on top of end-to-end visibility,” said Simon Ellis, supply chain lead analyst and Group VP at IDC. “Our research shows that the only way for companies to achieve that velocity and make more efficient and informed decisions is to improve visibility, information clarity and control over their supply chains. This data shows the majority of enterprises are prioritizing similar initiatives.”

The full white paper offers extensive details about the challenges and opportunities supply chain leaders are confronting today as well as actionable insight on how organizations can create efficiencies and mitigate risks to avoid disruptions in the future.

Download the IDC white paper by visiting

*Source: IDC White Paper, sponsored by Project44, Driving Response Velocity and Cost Efficiency with Supply Chain Viability, doc #US51214923, September 2023