Blockchain for Traceability and Transparency

Blockchain for Traceability and Transparency

April 23, 2018

Supply chain management continues to lack traceability and transparency due to analog gaps and proprietary technologies.  Blockchain technology offers a needed solution to resolve these issues.

With blockchain, transaction data cannot be manipulated. Public ledgers throughout the supply chain create visibility.  Therefore, traceability and transparency issues are more adequately addressed.

Blockchain technology can also decrease total costs in the supply chain by removing costs associated with lost or stolen inventory, and use of unethical practices.

This post is based on the NASDAQ post, Using Blockchains to Increase Supply Chain Efficiency, by Reuben Jackson, April 9, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / ElnurSee previous posts on OM in the News for more on how blockchain can increase tracking sources of foodreduce counterfeit products, and reduce forced labor.

Discussion Questions:

1. What would prevent a company from embracing a blockchain solution?

Guidance: Students should consider competitive advantages that may be compromised, loss of profit margins due to visibility, impact on unethical business practices for companies that rely on such poor behavior to compete globally.

2. How would you implement a blockchain solution for contract manufacturers in the fashion industry?

Guidance: Continue reading

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Zipline Drones to the Rescue

Zipline Drones to the Rescue

April 15, 2018

Zipline, which launched its drone delivery service for life-saving blood supplies in Rwanda in October 2016, now reveals the next generation of autonomous drones, the fastest commercial drones on earth.

With about a 30 minute delivery time, blood can now quickly reach a population of 10 million people who utilize hospitals and clinics across the rugged and mountainous country.  Drones are launched from a distribution center, and the fixed-wing planes cruise at speeds of about 101 km/h to their destinations where the boxed blood is then parachuted to the ground.

With a top speed of 128 km/h, they are four times faster than traditional quadcopters, and their range is much greater.  The new drone will make it possible to launch a fulfillment order within one minute of its receipt, as compared to the previous ten minutes, and the number of daily delivery flights will increase from 50 to 500.

Zipline, whose logistics were mapped with help from UPS, has saved many lives since its inception by delivering critical blood in a timely way.

This post is based on two articles: DroneLife.com’s 1 Minute Fulfillment. 101 KPH Delivery. Zipline Announces New Drones, by Miriam McNabbon, April 4, 2018, Continue reading

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