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The importance of supply chain digitalization

Global Trends
6 Mins.

Businesses in the cash industry are continuing their digital transformation journeys, integrating cutting-edge technologies into workflows to gain productivity and efficiency in their supply chains

One of the most remarkable consequences of COVID-19 has been the extent to which businesses’ digital transformation strategies have accelerated. From e-commerce to remote service, the uptake of digital tools and technologies around the world has been rapid.

Unable to show prospective buyers around properties, real estate companies invested in virtual tech to do the job for them. Telehealth saw an uptick as doctors used new digital products to serve their patients. Similarly, schools and universities leaned on edtech tools to teach students who were forced to study at home.

Such initiatives demonstrate how business leaders are embracing the opportunities of digital technology. Indeed, more than half of executives surveyed by McKinsey in 2020 said they were investing in new technologies for competitive advantage or to refocus their entire business around digital technologies.1 In 2017, the majority of those surveyed said cost reduction was the primary goal of digital transformation.

This mindset shift is critical if companies are to truly benefit from the next-generation capabilities of digital tools. Ultimately, says Steve Bates, Principal, KPMG in the US and global leader of KPMG International’s CIO Center of Excellence, “Technology has never been more important to organizations’ ability to survive and thrive.”2

Woman using ipad in production environment to represent supply chain digitalization
End-to-end digital tools like software enable businesses to establish more agile, efficient, and sophisticated workflows

From paper-based workflows to seamless digital processes

While the likes of Slack, Teams, and Zoom have dominated headlines over the past 12 months, the breadth of software available to businesses is vast. From business continuity planning and HR management systems to automated billing and customer service tools, companies in every sector and geography can benefit from digitalization.

The cash industry is moving to embrace technologies that help with its specific needs. These range from the changing demand for cash to  increased sustainability and the ever-present need for high security. Ecosystem players are expected to keep ATMs sufficiently stocked, deliver cash as efficiently as an Amazon order, and keep the cost of cash low. G+D’s holistic software solutions enable players to meet these needs by enhancing agility, productivity, and efficiency.

CIT companies are able to add  automation capabilities to route planning and track-and-trace technology to improve visibility, for example. Our software solution provides real-time visibility of stock positions per site, owner, and denomination to improve decision-making.

Central and commercial banks can anticipate future cash demand by implementing machine-learning-based forecasting tools. Specifically, continuous monitoring of inventory and sophisticated algorithms enable them to spot trends concerning where, when, and how much cash needs to be delivered or collected.

Meanwhile, printworks can use advanced analytics tools to monitor the quality and quantity of banknotes. G+D’s software monitors thousands of data points to cut wastage, enable machine faults to be resolved more quickly, and reduce unnecessary expenditure.

“When scaled to cover multiple players in an ecosystem, digital supply chains can deliver game-changing results“

Developing digital supply chains

The ability of digital tools to cover entire workflows is particularly beneficial. End-to-end software solutions can deliver improved productivity at a lower cost point thanks to the availability of data at every stage of a process. This visibility enables workflows to be streamlined and decision-making to be data-based, leading to improved outcomes. When scaled to cover multiple players in an ecosystem, digital supply chains can deliver game-changing results.

“Technology is enabling new concepts in our industry that weren’t possible five to 10 years ago, and the leaders are already taking advantage of it,” says Ross Knight, Head of Product Management Software, G+D Currency Technology.3

It can also help to improve business resilience. As companies look to return to some sort of normality in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic, the ability to adapt and thrive during periods of change has been a key topic of discussion. With geopolitical, climate, and cybersecurity threats also front of mind for many businesses, mitigating uncertainty is not going to disappear when the current pandemic recedes.

Agile and resilient business models

“As almost every organization’s dependence on digital technologies grows, it is hardly an exaggeration to say that adopting and managing digital technologies will be critical to business resilience,” Boston Consulting Group has noted.4  In particular, the management consultancy cites fully digitalized, highly automated, and IoT-enabled operations with end-to-end visibility as a hallmark of the most resilient organizations.

As no one can predict the future with any certainty, every business needs to increase its agility. Digitally mature companies demonstrate that they are able to function more effectively, both today and in the years to come.

  1. How COVID-19 has pushed companies over the technology tipping point – and transformed business forever, McKinsey, 2020

  2. COVID-19 forces one of the biggest surges in tech investment in history, KPMG, 2020

  3. Show Me the Money: Enhancing Visibility Across the Cash Cycle, G+D, 2020

  4. The Digital Path to Business Resilience, BCG, 2020

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