How digitization of supply chains can boost circular economies


How the digitization of supply chains can drive circular economies

Digital innovation and the circular economy are symbiotic in nature. In times of increasing Internet proliferation, it is difficult to imagine any circular economy initiative that does not have the help of technology. While there are several ways in which digitization can positively affect the circular economy, here are the top three:

1. Digitization can help organizations make better and more sustainable decisions.

Digital technologies allow information to travel alongside the product. This allows companies to capture, store, and analyze consumption patterns, which in turn helps organizations make better decisions. For example, research shows that 70% of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are related to the handling and use of materials. If companies have a clear idea of ​​how full their plane, boat, or truck is, they can determine in real time how efficient their delivery will be. This translates into better efficiency, lower fuel costs, shorter delivery cycles and reduced GHG reductions. Thyssenkrupp, one of the world’s leading elevator manufacturers, installed a cloud-based predictive maintenance system on 130,000 of its elevators worldwide. Its sensors collect health data of its components, systems and performance. This helps Thyssenkrupp to provide better service, longer elevator uptime, and longer product life.

2. Digitization can help unlock more value across all supply chains. Traditionally, most companies focus on connecting data and devices to their customer base. Digitization can be used to unlock a number of isolated parts, partners, and consumers throughout the value chain. For example, a raw material supplier can take advantage of a manufacturer’s storage system (via API) to proactively validate if they are running out of certain raw materials. Once raw materials have reached the end of their useful life, manufacturers can take advantage of digital technologies to measure whether products have reached sufficient intrinsic value to return them to. This creates an opportunity for companies to be more efficient, consume less resources and create less waste and emissions in the process. A growing number of digital platforms promise to create tighter value chain integrations and help multiple manufacturers make the transition to a circular economy model. As far as the consumer is concerned, digital markets are helping to create more consumer-conscious consumers.

3. Digital supply chains need to be reliable and secure. Supply chain digitization offers the promise of greater speed, efficiency, visibility and control. However, the increasing prevalence of APIs means that the attack surface of an organization increases. Just as a single container ship trapped in the Suez Canal can disrupt the global economy, an unreliable or unreliable API can disrupt important supply chain processes. As organizations digitize, they need to take the necessary steps to protect their digital assets.

How Citrix is ​​Involving the Circular Economy

Citrix technologies allow individuals and businesses to work from anywhere and adopt adaptable work models. These technologies enable organizations to adopt a secure hybrid work model. This also means that organizations using Citrix can drastically reduce daily commuting emissions and meet the flexibility needs of employees, given that 27% of U.S. emissions come from transportation-related sources and office-related commuting.

Workers using Citrix solutions can use low-power devices and use those same devices for longer, reducing costs and emissions while keeping hazardous waste out of landfills. This supports two key principles of a circular economy with device reuse and waste reduction.

Citrix technologies also play a vital role in facilitating a seamless move toward energy efficiency and low-carbon cloud computing. Citrix’s application security and delivery solution protects and scales the APIs that are so vital to a streamlined and efficient digital supply chain. Protecting the digital backbone is an important step towards a more circular economy.

The change in the circular economy will not be easy, but it will be rewarding. Customers are looking for companies that offer great service, but also share their core values. Companies that take advantage of digitalization to adopt circularity will be seen as visionary and, as such, will be rewarded with relationships and loyalty with the deepest customers. As the old saying goes, what happens comes.

This content was produced by Citrix. It was not written by the editorial staff of the MIT Technology Review.



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