Digital Lighthouses and Smart Factories

Digital Lighthouses and Smart Factories: Building a Smarter Future for Procurement

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It’s no secret that more companies are investing in supply chain resilience and procurement operations. 

And that’s all thanks to the growing market of digital solutions aiding teams to be more efficient and proactive. 

Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, which gained a heightened presence as a result of the pandemic, has shared how Digital Lighthouses and Smart Factories are helping it deliver more medicines to patients – quickly.  

What is a smart factory? 
‘Smart factories are an interconnected, digitally-enabled supply network that comprises of our development and manufacturing sites, and our end-to-end supply chains, along with our external suppliers and partners.’ 

Digital solutions are impacting multiple, if not every, industry for the better. Powered by disruptive technologies, companies like AstraZeneca are being more proactive thus are able to help customers in record time. 

Will we be seeing more of these? What is a digital lighthouse? 
Unequivocally, yes.  

Digital lighthouses are shaping supply chains, providing better visibility by using data and suitable solutions. Teams can then build and test their capabilities to see if they’re a right fit, where they can then capitalise on the value of that digital solution. You only need to look at the multiple companies that have secured millions in funding in the past year alone to know that the only way is up from here: funding and innovation. 

What does the future of digital procurement look like? 

It’s a tricky one to say what it looks like for certain, but companies are clearly seeing the benefits of going digital – it’s a smart move. By partnering up or acquiring other companies to solve customers’ problems, as well as their own, they are setting themselves up for greater things. 

In fact, a recent report on blockchain technology has uncovered the market will swell at a compound annual growth rate of 65.17% by 2026. Moreover, VC funding is expected to surpass $500bn, with the rapid emergence of tech unicorns as investors continue to see value in digital tools. 

Investment isn’t going away anytime soon, as digital tools continue to build smart futures for everyone and shine a light for the way forward. Companies will be able to tackle further issues like Scope 3 emissions, improving sustainability efforts and social injustice, as well as internal processes and improving efficiency. 

What’s next on the digital procurement agenda? 

Industry 4.0 technologies: which ones do you see gaining interest? 

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