What is an end-to-end supply chain?

Jan 10, 2022
Supply Chain
New Category
Table of Contents

An end-to-end supply chain process covers the whole lifecycle of a product, from its design to the sourcing of raw materials needed, and last-mile delivery to customers. Businesses have come a long way from the days of handling each of these stages separately. Nowadays, you will notice that there is more complexity in the supply chain, and with that has come a refined chain advanced by technology.

Some companies make challenging work of supply chain operations due to a lack of operational visibility, leaving them unable to monitor a long and complex supply chain with many suppliers and steps.

Whereas modern supply chains now comprise supplier management, scheduling, production, and distribution with a more holistic end-to-end focus. Supply chain managers can measure, optimize, and improve their supply chain operations and resiliency. More than 55.6% of organizations are now using technology to help analyze and report on supply chain disruptions, according to Business Continuity.

What is the value of an end-to-end supply chain?

An end-to-end supply chain is priceless because it is a network linking a company to its suppliers and involves many departments, including procurement and inventory management, finance, logistics and planning, operations, quality, sales, and customer service.

What is end-to-end supply chain management?

End-to-end supply chain involves the tracking of processes and goods traveling throughout the chain, logging data, and monitoring the condition of goods, which can be analyzed to ensure optimum operations and quality outputs by supply chain managers.

What is end-to-end supply chain visibility?

End-to-end supply chain visibility is essential for companies to communicate more efficiently, solve problems through improved collaboration, and provide better service to partners and customers. Visibility into an end-to-end supply chain creates an integrated view across the enterprise, incorporating data from suppliers, retailers, manufacturers, outsourced partners, and customers. This allows enterprises to quickly see any inbound and outbound problems, with the opportunity to solve them faster and mitigate the impacts of deviations and exceptions.

Why is visibility so important to an end-to-end supply chain?

Supply chains are increasingly dynamic and more interconnected, so it means that more and more organizations are relying on technology to predict, monitor, record, measure, and report supply chain disruptions. 

Without end-to-end supply chain visibility, it is hard for supply chain management to oversee operations. They need data and knowledge from different sections of the supply chain to see how they are performing, separately and with additional areas or functions, all of which need to be calculated, optimized and enhanced for better value.

What happens if they lack visibility?

If companies lack visibility in supply chains, this can, in turn, impact efficiency and productivity, affecting customer satisfaction and profitability. So having visibility means organizations can streamline their transportation activities, improve visibility across departments and make their supply chain reliability as high as possible. It is crucial, as a supply chain concerns numerous partners that can benefit in these areas from end-to-end visibility.

How do end-to-end supply chains achieve visibility?

Customers have come to expect a high level of transparency and traceability for their online orders. Therefore, partnering with a visibility platform like Shippeo allows B2B companies to offer the same kind of experience and confidence for their customers when receiving first and final stage deliveries.

What are the advantages of an end-to-end supply chain with visibility?

End-to-end supply chain visibility helps companies to better serve customers by improving overall production efficiency and reduced delays thanks to better-advanced detection of potential issues across the supply chain.

Other benefits of end-to-end supply chain visibility include:

  • Better relationships with suppliers and customers
  • Reduced risks and operating costs
  • Enhanced ability to predict and plan to respond to market changes
  • Transparency and the ability to view “blind spots”

For companies that wish to become a customer-centric organization, leveraging tracking and ETA prediction services to provide customers with real-time insights on transportation operations enables increased transparency and traceability

A supply chain visibility platform gives you instant access to predictive and real-time information for all deliveries. By supplying customers with instant access to real-time operational data and predictive insights, they can improve the reliability and efficiency of logistics processes. This level of visibility is advantageous not only to the supply chain managers, but to sales, marketing, and customer service departments.

So visibility is the key to collaboration?

Supply chain collaboration relies upon having the right planning and management solutions in place. Collaborative platforms and solutions offer supply chain managers the ability to pull data from their ecosystem partners in order to receive insights into the ordering process, inventory status, supply chain issues or risks, and stand-alone supply chain analytics. This essentially allows a company to gain better visibility of warehouses, suppliers, and stakeholders in the supply chain.


It is important to remember that supply chains are becoming longer, layered, and additionally complex. End-to-end supply chain visibility works because it is cost-effective, rather than reducing costs by downgrading structures and staff levels-measures that increase pressure on a company in all departments.

With more transportation modes and partners concerned, the number of systems to integrate to achieve visibility can be daunting. There is a perception that upgrading or replacing legacy systems is financially and resource-intensive, though this is not always the case.

However, with a real-time visibility platform such as Shippeo, companies can easily integrate with legacy systems via an API. Visibility platforms can connect to all data sources (shipper TMS, ERP or WMS, carrier telematics, and ocean tracking networks) to aggregate real-time information and send it to the platform of choice.

A supply chain visibility platform gives instant access to predictive and real-time information for all deliveries; allowing for a quick and accurate method to anticipate problems and allow for efficient management of exceptions to mitigate their impact.

What is an end-to-end supply chain?
What is an end-to-end supply chain?
What is an end-to-end supply chain?

Unlock expert content

Discover authentic advice and insights from experienced supply chain and logistic leaders for FREE!

✔️ 60+ articles covering essential topics
✔️ In-depth views on what matters most
✔️ Stay up to date with innovations in the industry
✔️ Learn how global brands unlock a supply chain’s full potential

Unlock expert content

Discover authentic advice and insights from experienced supply chain and logistic leaders for FREE!