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A compilation of articles, highlighting the depth and complexity of this world wide problem. 

A compilation of articles, highlighting the depth and complexity of this world wide problem. 

Aerospace Supply Chain Modernization: Transforming Impact in 3 Areas

Leaders in industries of all stripes are currently reckoning with today’s confusing tech landscape. As we continue to make advances in existing technology with solid precedents, advances on newer frontiers of integration and interoperability are offering new ways to work and manage relationships. In the complex ecosystem of aerospace and defense, there is a great opportunity to modernize the supply chain for the benefit of manufacturers and their third-party networks. Here are three of the areas of highest impact where we may see a change in the near future.

1. Data Silos

In its current state, the aerospace industry has a significant problem with the collection of data and accessibility of various processes across the supply chain. Companies need to collect, preserve and analyze vast amounts of information, but the wide variety of tools used by different third parties means the majority of data collected remains in silos. It’s common for companies to use four or five different systems just to do the bare minimum of supply quality tracking, and the majority of interactions are completed via email and Excel files. With all the different systems in place, anyone interacting with data must peel back multiple layers to even access it, let alone derive insights from it.

Integration and interoperability will see significant sophistication and refinement in the near future–improving data security and streamlining the processes of collecting and handling data. This will be especially important when companies need to collect significant amounts of data from multiple third parties at critical points such as due diligence and risk screening. With a centralized system that simplifies the integration of various third-party tools, manufacturers will be able to pivot away from reactive decision-making and mature into a proactive approach.

2. Automation & Innovation

With more ways to take repetitive tasks out of the equation, increasing automation will become a powerful tool to elevate human performance. Rather than replacing employees, emerging technology can and should be viewed as a force multiplier that frees up time and energy for people to do what we do at the highest levels of performance. For example, third-party risk managers are already able to use centralized platforms to partially automate risk monitoring that turns up red flags rather than having to perform periodic monitoring tasks themselves.

In addition to basic automation, many companies will implement AI. By asking questions through these tools and delving into the analysis they provide we are ultimately amplifying our ability to ask insightful questions that fuel innovation. In this climate, aerospace companies will find that critical thinking and creativity will climb higher in the ranking of desirable skills as the ability to efficiently complete tasks that amount to busy work becomes less and less necessary.

3. Relationship Risk

With quality being the foremost facet of risk in the aerospace industry, there are plenty of standards in place to meet regulations and ensure processes promote quality throughout the supply chain. AS9100, for example, is used throughout the industry as the gold standard for general risk mitigation.

However, supply chain risk is an area of less maturity and relationship risk management is even less developed–meaning these areas are ripe with opportunities for improvement. With much of the heavy lifting on repetitive administrative tasks and data handling done through automation, manufacturers can focus on cultivating their third-party ecosystems.

A collaborative approach built on easy information exchange via platforms like Ethixbase360 will allow companies to clarify third-party relationships by setting standards and expectations as well as shared business goals. Companies will be able to better assess threats from third-party actions and track records on issues like labor practices and climate impact and facilitate alignment for mutual benefit.

The Efficiency Effect

The acceleration of technology that allows us to share better data more easily offers an exciting opportunity for any business. For aerospace manufacturers and their suppliers, access to platforms that offer partial automation of TPRM tasks means more chances to lean into creativity and communication to drive development while minimizing third-party risk. As always, adaptation is a difficult and unpredictable but fully necessary skill that will carry competent companies into the future.

Want to gain valuable insights into the Aerospace & Defense industry’s rapidly evolving regulatory landscape? Ethixbase360’s Industry Outlook Report focuses on anti-bribery and corruption regulations, emphasizing the need for companies to be vigilant in understanding their third-party network’s compliance with these developments, as demonstrated by high-profile cases in 2022. Addressing prevalent issues like a lack of comprehensive mitigation tools and a culture of corruption is crucial for companies of all sizes. The primary challenge in 2023 is to attain complete visibility across extensive third-party networks while fostering continuous global compliance amidst the increasingly stringent ESG disclosures.

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