JIT inventory is becoming more feasible due to technological advances like drones and 3D printing combined with advanced data collection. The real manufacturing world is converging with digital manufacturing, enabling manufacturers to digitally plan and project product lifecycles.
Improved planning is due, in part, to the Internet of Things (IoT). Through this technology, organizations gather raw event streams from sensors and filter data accordingly. It also enables reports and responses to issues in real time.
PINC Solutions, a provider of advanced yard management and supply chain execution solutions powered by IoT, recently launched its Aerial Sensor Platform and Supply Chain Drone, PINC Air, which surveys a large area by air to get an accurate inventory or to locate specific items as needed.
Advances in 3D printing, for example, have enabled earbud manufacturer Normal to supply custom-fitted, 3D printed earbuds to customers via a smartphone app that takes ear measurements from an uploaded photo.
With the advent of IoT and other technological advancements customers can continue to expect customized supply chain solutions as methodologies become increasingly better, faster and cheaper.