Real-time supply chain visibility – the business values and the antecedents of successful implementation

S. Somapa, M. Cools, W. Dullaert

Effective supply chain nowadays must be capable to respond to the rapid changes in demand, production and supply while simultaneously taking benefit from the global sources of supply, production and distribution (Butner, 2007). As the economic environment is dynamic and continues to change, a supply chain can avoid interruptions in logistics flows by increasing cooperation and sharing greater information between partners (Pereira, 2009). Supply chain visibility is therefore deemed a vital enabler to improve the responsiveness and flexibility (Butner, 2007; Wei and Wang, 2007) while simultaneously enhancing the supply chain efficiency (Bartlett et al., 2007; Heaney and Sadlovska, 2009; Tohamy, 2003). This paper surveys the literature to offer a practical definition of real-time visibility, identify how it creates values to businesses, and pinpoint the determinants affecting the successful implementation of this technological innovation.

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