Top 2024 Challenges and Priorities - Supply Chain Trends and Technology Report

Supply Chain Trends and Technology Report

I would like to share the recent report published by CGS on the supply chain trend and technology report. In this report, I found some interesting data and analytics that would be useful for the fashion businesses in the fashion retailing and manufacturing sectors. 

About the report

For the past nine years, CGS BlueCherry® conducted research and reported their findings in an annual Supply Chain and Technology Trends Report. Every year hundreds of professionals from across the supply chain take time to share their perspectives. More than 300 individuals participated in our latest survey, representing multiple corporate roles and businesses active in retail, wholesale, eCommerce and manufacturing. Here is a preview of what they shared and what we will discuss in this report.

Content of the report


The key takeaways mentioned in the report include the following. 

1. Digital Transformation

Digital transformation became a bright star of the show in this 2024 edition of our annual report on supply chain trends and technologies. Among that star’s points: It’s seen as the No. 3 growth opportunity and improvement priority, the No. 4 ranked action necessary to improve supply chain performance, and the No. 3 ranked action companies are leveraging to overcome challenges.

2. Digital Sales

Digital sales are the No. 1 growth opportunity among many retailers, manufacturers, brands, wholesalers, and of course eCommerce businesses. Our research has borne out this trend for six consecutive years. Q3-Q4 2023 eCommerce sales increases bode well for another year of healthy online shopping and spending in 2024.

3. Uncertainty

Uncertainty is a major concern on multiple fronts. Over 90 percent of our survey respondents said economic/political uncertainties are expected to be a supply chain challenge in 2024, yet only one-third see this as a “serious problem.” Problems getting containers through both the Panama and Suez canals — and related increased shipping costs — have put transportation and logistics uncertainties back on the table after a brief return to normal post-pandemic.

4. Environmental, social and governance (ESG) 

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) efforts ranked as lower priorities when comparing year-over-year results. This might reflect significant progress already made to comply with the most pressing mandates, such as the UFLPA. Still, when it comes to supply chain challenges, 49 percent of respondents said ESG/traceability poses a serious or moderate problem for their business. The majority of survey participants consider ESG “very important” or “important” for their growth.

5. Price/margin

Price/margin pressure was ranked the No. 1 supply chain challenge for 2024, working its way up from being ranked as the third greatest challenge last year. Reducing costs is seen as the most important improvement priority this year, as it was for 2023. The pandemic’s bullwhip effect has been a frustrating culprit, sending demand way up in 2022 and leaving many with excess inventory, plummeting orders and underutilized factory capacity in 2023. However, despite these difficult hurdles, 94 percent of survey participants have high or moderate confidence in their supply chains to support their 2024 business objectives. Results also show they are carrying out technology priorities to streamline and strengthen their operations, from concept to consumer.

Prasanta Sarkar

Prasanta Sarkar is a textile engineer and a postgraduate in fashion technology from NIFT, New Delhi, India. He has authored 6 books in the field of garment manufacturing technology, garment business setup, and industrial engineering. He loves writing how-to guide articles in the fashion industry niche. He has been working in the apparel manufacturing industry since 2006. He has visited garment factories in many countries and implemented process improvement projects in numerous garment units in different continents including Asia, Europe, and South Africa. He is the founder and editor of the Online Clothing Study Blog.

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