The global supply chain industry is complex by nature and becoming increasingly more so in the wake of rising consumer demands and a rapidly growing body of competition. But while many supply chain challenges are ubiquitous, others are exclusive to specific regions as a result of political and socioeconomic differences.
In Latin America, common supply chain challenges include:
- Insufficient Infrastructure: Despite its bustling city streets and vibrant rural communities, a large portion of Latin America relies on poorly constructed roads, insufficient energy grids, outdated ports, and a limited number of airports for transportation. This lack of adequate infrastructure, known by many as the Latin American and Caribbean infrastructure gap, hinders an organization’s ability to get products from A to B efficiently and effectively. This is a foundational issue impacting every other supply chain challenge Latin America faces.
- Political and Economic Uncertainty: Many Latin American organizations have been impacted by political and economic uncertainty. In fact, according to one recent study, government instability and economic shocks are the two leading threats to the Latin American supply chain following corruption.  Inflation, debt, and political unrest all contribute to the complexities of the LATAM supply chain and impede businesses’ ability to move products across borders.
- Customer Expectations: Like many of their counterparts across the globe, Latin American organizations are learning how to keep pace with increasingly complex consumer demands. Today’s consumers expect next-day delivery, superior customer service, low prices, and an experience tailored to their unique needs and desires. Latin American organizations must learn how to meet these demands while remaining profitable.
- Augmenting Labor: As countries around the globe grapple with labor shortages, many Latin American organizations find themselves ahead of the curve, having addressed labor shortages during the commodities boom of the early 2000s. But, escalating consumer demands continue to put pressure on these companies to produce and ship more goods quickly and efficiently. To keep pace, many Latin American organizations are weaving automation and robotics into their supply chain management strategies. These tools don’t replace employees but help them maximize their abilities.
Overcoming Roadblocks to Supply Chain Success
For Latin American organizations to thrive amidst such a complex, fast-paced supply chain environment, access to advanced analytics is essential. Robust supply chain analytics platforms allow organizations to diligently track their operations and make smarter, more informed decisions at speed. They also empower organizations to identify and measure long-term goals, observe trends, and adjust their operations as needed. Without these insights, businesses are vulnerable to the shifting tides of political and economic uncertainty as well as evolving customer expectations.
Warehouse management systems (WMS) that facilitate automation also help Latin American organizations increase their productivity. While many businesses already leverage automation in their day-to-day operations, countless others still rely on manual processes to keep their supply chain and logistics strategies afloat. Investing in WMS integration and automation allows these organizations to mitigate labor challenges and empower existing employees to take on new roles and responsibilities. Enhanced productivity as a result of warehouse technology also helps organizations make up for lost time as a result of insufficient infrastructure.
Leveraging the Power of a Global Supply Chain Support System
There’s no question about it — Latin American organizations face a unique array of supply chain challenges. Fortunately, they don’t have to navigate these challenges alone. By partnering with Körber, these organizations are joining forces with a global brand that has made a long-term commitment to improving their supply chain operations.
Körber’s presence in Latin America allows for quick, convenient, and cost-efficient project implementations that might not otherwise be feasible for local businesses. Due to the region’s unpredictable exchange rates, high interest rates, and other economic uncertainties, many Latin American organizations need technology that can provide a rapid ROI. To meet these challenges, Körber offers highly flexible, integrated end-to-end solutions that can be delivered faster than the competition. With Körber by their side, LATAM businesses can increase their speed and efficiency while ultimately reducing costs.