Blockchain Technology Has Potential To Improve Supply Chains Dramatically

As trade continues to open up beyond borders, globalism is becoming a way of life. Products and their components are being sourced, manufactured, and shipped to practically every corner of the earth, and supply chain management plays a central role in pulling everything off while remaining profitable. While just-in-time sourcing and Kaizen processing have made noteworthy contributions to streamlining processes, one technology that could steal the spotlight moving forward is blockchains.

The full potential of blockchain technology has yet to be untapped, but one area where it shows a lot of promise is in supply chain management. Although blockchains are not fully understood and embraced by the general public just yet, their absolute reliability could prove very useful.

Since blockchains are perhaps best-known for their use in cryptocurrencies, the applications in this respect are a good starting point. For example, the cryptocurrency GeoCoin can be dropped in any place on a map for another party, who then visits that location to collect it. This could be used in logistic fulfillment for truck shipping processes. A geocoin could be dropped at the destination that contains the shipping contract and payment as metadata. When the truck arrives at that destination, the completed fulfillment status would then become visible on the blockchain immediately.

In manufacturing, there are several potential applications. It could help OEMs and suppliers with the process of registering quality-approved subcomponents in multisig transactions and then broadcast their availability to buyers. Manufacturers could streamline blocks of production runs and only run them when new transactions are broadcast. Having a blockchain ledger that is openly visible could help with the problem of knowing how much of something is needed and when.

It’s still a long way from becoming part of everyday practice, but the potential for blockchains to improve supply chain management is undoubtedly there.

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