Designing supply chains for agility, automation and sustainability with the Microsoft Supply Chain Platform

On Monday 14th November, Microsoft introduced the Microsoft Supply Chain Platform, which will help organisations maximise their existing supply chain investments with an open approach, bringing the best of Microsoft AI, collaboration, low code, security and Software as a Service (SaaS) applications to a composable platform.

At the core of the Microsoft Supply Chain Platform is the Microsoft Supply Chain Center which was also unveiled this week and is currently available in preview. The Supply Chain Center will empower customers to get started quickly with a ready-made “command center” that natively works with existing supply chain data and applications.

Keeping supply chains moving

The Microsoft Supply Chain Center will bring much-needed tools to keep supply chains flowing. Ensuring sufficient stock to meet customer demand can be exceptionally complex, which is why Microsoft has brought together a host of applications to make this task a lot easier:

Command Center

The Microsoft Supply Chain center provides a ‘Command centre’ where multiple channels of data can be brought together to ensure organisations have all the information they need to make the critical decisions that enable the supply chain to keep moving.

Smart News Insights

Smart News insights bring relevant news stories and alerts that may potentially affect an organisation’s supply chain directly to their attention, empowering their supply chain practitioners to make decisions quickly and effectively with real-world event information. In 2021, the Ever Given shipping container blocked the Suez Canal for 6 days preventing an estimated $9.6 billion dollars in trade per day and affecting suppliers across the world. Having this type of news brought immediately to an organisation’s attention quickly gives them the ability to immediately react and put in place alternative supply to minimise disruption.

Artificial Intelligence

Advanced A.I. models built on Microsoft Azure predict stock shortages and with Microsoft Teams built directly into the Supply Chain Center, organisations can communicate and collaborate with suppliers immediately to affect change and mitigate supply constraints. No more missed calls and abandoned e-mails.

Power Platform

The Supply Chain Center also utilises the Microsoft Power Platform and in particular Power Automate, enabling organisations to update and create Purchase Orders without ever leaving the app, simplifying the whole process.

The beauty of all these tools is that they don’t make current supply chain systems redundant. The Dataverse, Microsoft’s database in the cloud, enables seamless connections into an organisation’s existing systems, gaining visibility of their supply chain as well as custom workflows, data reporting, and other applications, bringing information needed to make informed decisions straight to their fingertips.

One platform, unlimited potential

With this announcement, Microsoft is making it easier for its customers to leverage the full Microsoft Cloud to enhance their supply chain. The Microsoft Supply Chain Platform provides building blocks across Microsoft Azure, Dynamics 365, Microsoft Teams and the Power Platform for customers to adopt capabilities that address their specific supply chain needs. With Dataverse, customers can use hundreds of data connectors to gain visibility and act across their supply chain. The Power Platform also enables custom workflows, data reporting, and applications that connect to existing Supply Chain systems.

With the unveiling of the Supply Chain Center, Microsoft has recognised that to be truly agile, its supply chain software needs to increase visibility across data sources, predict and mitigate disruption, streamline collaboration, and fulfil orders – sustainably and securely.

Next steps

Existing Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management customers will automatically gain access to the Supply Chain Center as part of their current agreements when available. In the meantime, we encourage you to explore the Supply Chain Center in preview.

If you would like to explore how Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management can help your organisation create a more resilient and sustainable supply chain, please download our guide today.