Top 5 Use Cases of RPA in the Supply Chain

Many businesses spend years building their management systems and platforms. The value of using RPA in supply chain processes is often overlooked due to the nature of “traditional” maneuvers within the supply chain. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) delivers changes to shipping schedules efficiently, decreasing the chance of delays. RPA can also handle customer needs or automate and consolidate data entry and enable faster shipping.  Additional benefits include streamlining order management needs and identifying weaknesses within the supply chain. 

1. Management by Exception for Delays or Changes to the Shipping Schedule

RPA in supply chain operations is beneficial for shippers because management can be notified immediately when changes are made to the shipping schedule. Changes in the schedule can lead to costly delays and even cause businesses to lose customers. TechTarget.com states, RPA can improve supply chain management and logistics by automating repetitive time-consuming tasks such as data entry, in turn improving workflows. RPA uses automated software robots — or bots — to extract data from one application and paste it into another.” Integrating this software helps eliminate the significant struggle among shippers, carriers, and management by opening communication lines and transforming logistics.

2. After-Sales Service to Handle Customer Needs

Another essential function of using RPA in supply chain activity comes after the sale. After-sales customer service checks in on customers to ensure their needs are met, including a great delivery experience. This service provides customers with an easy way to submit feedback in a way that helps ensure that their voice is heard. If issues occur, customers can address them immediately. This provides the company with an opportunity to boost its customer service level with timely responses. 

3. Automation of Data Entry

Automated data entry enables logistics managers to reduce their workload and prioritize their working hours. Mundane, everyday tasks can encroach on valuable work time, especially during the crunch time of busy seasons and any logistics automation, like RPA, will help streamline the upstream supply chain. Using RPA in supply chain operations to handle these processes will streamline those services and increase efficiency.  Manual entry of customer information also takes up precious time. In addition to saving time on paperwork, automated systems can remember repeat customers and automatically save and share their data with shippers. 

4. Enabling Order Management

In addition to enabling automated back-office work, using RPA in supply chain processes also allows for more seamless order management. Disorganization caused by manual processes can lead to lost files or information and shipment delays. Poor order management can cause delays and prevent on-time deliveries. The ripple effect of missing deadlines can lead shippers to lose business and logistics companies and freight forwarders to lose shippers. 

5. Identifying, Implementing, and Continuously Optimizing Network Processes

Becoming more efficient with RPA can make it easier when it comes to processing orders, shipping via multi-modes, verifying vendors, and identifying additional needs. However, efficiency does not stop at implementation. Adding RPA in supply chain processes means continuous, proactive, and preventative maintenance for network processes, as well as ongoing route optimization connected to other systems of record. Furthermore, software needs to be monitored to correctly identify issues as they arise. These processes can reorder inventory or condense emails, but management and other users must put in the work to ensure proper care and maintenance for their solutions. 

Increase Efficiency With RPA in Supply Chain Processes Throughout Your Network

RPA in supply chain processes handles everything from backlogged office duties to tracking the shipments and nurturing customers once their order is complete. Many supply chain experts can better navigate the frustrating and confusing parts of shipments by upgrading the software bots throughout the network. Request a demo with RPA Labs to get started.

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