Study on supply chain management by Körber

Supply Chain Management

Why new technologies make supply chains smarter 

Logistics processes today are becoming increasingly complex. Production and order processing are becoming more complex. Due to the increasing digitalization of society, companies in the industry are also facing new technological challenges. Not every company is up to these challenges. Körber, a provider of supply chain software and automation technologies, has now for the first time conducted a survey to determine how well prepared the logistics industry is for all of this. The results are surprising.

A total of over 1,200 logistics experts were asked for their opinion. Only 9 percent of them said that they could keep up with the challenges they are now facing. A worryingly low number. The integration of new technologies in particular is causing many difficulties. Almost half of those surveyed noticed last year that processes are becoming more comprehensive. If problems then occur at several points in the supply chain, 51 percent of companies manage to deal with just one thing.

For greater flexibility, as has been demonstrated particularly in Corona times, it will be important in future that all units involved in a logistics chain are digitally networked with each other. This is fundamental for all processes in Logistics 4.0 and will be a standard requirement on the market. For participants, this means setting a clear focus on digitization today.

The customer is demanding king 
Customers are more demanding than in the past. They expect their orders to be processed quickly. Short delivery times at reasonable prices play an important role for many of them. Logistics companies must therefore be able to act flexibly. Automation and solutions from Industry 4.0 could help companies to do so. But almost half of the experts participating in the survey feel overwhelmed when it comes to integrating software, hardware and new technologies. Another result is therefore hardly surprising: One in four companies therefore prefers to rely on manual processes for central warehouse operations such as picking and packing.

Supply chain managers are therefore coming under increasing pressure. At least on the management level, as a large number of those surveyed concede, many managers see the increasing importance of a functioning supply chain management. It is therefore understandable when 73 percent of those surveyed feel that their managers prioritize overcoming the challenges in the supply chain. But this feeling alone is not enough. Even those who refuse to use the technology to date must face up to the new challenges as quickly as possible.

No fear of new technologies

The results of the survey confirm an observation that we at Packwise also come across time and again. Many companies are still very reluctant to implement new technical solutions in their supply chains. On the one hand, this is understandable, because for many years it was of course possible to do without them. But if you want to keep up, you have to face these trends.

This makes it all the more important for suppliers of such technological innovations to ensure that they are user-friendly and easy to use. With our Packwise Smart Cap, which enables companies to keep a digital overview of the processes involved in the logistics of their IBC containers, we wanted to make the integration of the necessary hardware and software as simple as possible. The Packwise Smart Cap therefore does not have to be mounted to the IBC in a complicated way – it is attached without much effort. The associated software is easy to integrate into existing systems and is designed to be user-friendly.

One thing is important in all these processes: companies should be aware of the changes necessary for the future. Facing them promises new ways to make the supply chain more effective – and smarter.


Anyone interested in the Körber survey can download it here: