Supply Chain Visibility: Closer Than You Think
Running a sustainable company isn't as simple as it looks. "Compliance and recycle/reuse is about knowing what's in your product—materials, chemicals, substances," says Christoph Wilfert, CEO of London-based everycs, developer of a technology solution—currently in beta testing—that screens global supply chains for risks and impacts.
"But suppliers, like chemical companies, hate formula or percentage composition disclosures, and rightfully so, because it's their intellectual property," Wilfert says. "It's like asking Coke to disclose their formula; it's a non-starter. The whole disclosure-based compliance process is bound to be inefficient from the get-go."
Shippers and manufacturers searching for ways to achieve more ethical supply chain practices may soon gain the ability to access data that hasn't been available previously, thanks to the everycs solution and the similar technologies that will undoubtedly follow.
"Combined risk, hazard, and environmental data is a breakthrough," Wilfert notes. "First, because it simplifies the process and makes it a lot cheaper. Second, because to date there hasn't been the technical platform to do it all together while protecting intellectual property rights."
Currently, 50 percent of manufacturers don't have any visibility beyond their Tier 1 suppliers, according to a KPMG study. By modeling thousands of connected supply chains, the new software concept should be able to trace components and materials without forcing suppliers to cough up data they'd rather keep private.