Supply Chain Visibility

What Does Supply Chain Visibility Mean?

Supply chain visibility (SCV) is the trackability or traceability of product orders and physical product shipments from the production source to their destination. This includes logistics activities and transport as well as the state of events and milestones that take place before and during transit.

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The objective of SCV is to enhance and empower the supply chain by making information easily accessible to each and every stakeholder, including customers. The integration of SCV tools or systems enables different supply chain divisions in an organization to acquire real-time and precise information regarding stock, orders and deliveries in their incoming and outgoing networks.

Techopedia Explains Supply Chain Visibility

With ample supply chain visibility (SCV), businesses can respond promptly and swiftly to unexpected, potentially troublesome situations like production bottlenecks on the supply side, order modifications on the demand side, and so on.

Acquiring SCV enables organizations to manage these situations or events, analyze their effects and orchestrate an instant solution, while delivering a unified view of the supply chain.

Concerns regarding visibility in the supply chain:

  • Merchandise unavailable or in a different location
  • Supply and transportation problems
  • Lack of ability in leveraging the international inventory network
  • Insufficient visibility of orders, deliveries and inventory
  • Low visibility concerning transactions

Six essential criteria that can build productive supply chains:

  • Collaboration
  • Responsiveness, optimization and reactivity
  • Connectivity
  • Flexibility and execution
  • Agility
  • Visibility and calculation

When emphasizing visibility enhancement, the following areas can be leveraged to boost improvements on the criteria mentioned above:

  • Connecting demand and supply
  • Channel visibility
  • Provider visibility and communication

Features of SCV:

  • Instant access to vital information
  • Enhanced end-to-end business process efficiency
  • Visibility to supply chain "blind spots"
  • Real-time visibility to customer requirements
  • Enhanced customer responsiveness
  • Superior handling and execution
  • Decreased material and labor costs
  • Better stock management
  • Improved business metric monitoring and outcomes
  • Optimized logistics and transportation efficiency

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.