4 key ways sourcing and design impact your entire product journey
blogJanuary 8, 2024
The start of your product's journey has a big impact on what comes next, from sales and marketing to recycling and disposal.
1. Establishing product origin stories
A key way to meet evolving consumer demand for complete product transparency is through the establishment of product origin stories. As Gartner notes in the 2023 Market Guide for Product Information Management Solutions, these stories answer important questions like where a product comes from, how it was made and by whom, and how it got here. These stories are a fundamental part of addressing questions around greenwashing, as well as ensuring full regulatory compliance in every market.
Securing a correct, compelling, and compliant product origin story requires full data transparency from the very start of a product’s journey: the product’s sourcing and design stage. Onboarding relevant data from this early upstream stage ensures every product can meet downstream expectations. This includes data on material sourcing and extraction, labor conditions of workers, transit emissions, and much more. Only by securing inspiring, truthful, and data-driven product origin stories can brands and manufacturers differentiate themselves from the competition and unlock the revenue potential these stories create.
2. Complying with evolving regulations
Product origin stories are a key part of building trust with the consumer. However, they’re also a great way to ensure compliance with a multitude of evolving regulations across multiple markets. Many of the data points needed to provide accurate and authentic product origin stories correlate with those required to meet emerging regulatory requirements. This includes the European Union’s forthcoming Digital Product Passport (DPP) initiative, set to transform supply chains around the world.
As the transition to circularity continues apace, the number of regulations surrounding supply chain transparency will only increase. By securing the fully flexible governance of data from the design and sourcing stage of your product’s lifecycle, you can proactively address all existing and emerging regulations. The ability to quickly comply with regulations is also a huge catalyst for market expansion, streamlining your growth ambitions for every market.
3. Enabling more sustainable production choices
Creating more circular products requires a closer look at the way manufacturers design and source the goods they sell. This means thinking about selecting materials that are easily recyclable or reusable. It also means minimizing waste during production and implementing sustainable design techniques and processes. However, in a world of complex, international supply chains, making changes to the sourcing of your products is often easier said than done.
Making more sustainable decisions for your supply chain requires a foundation of dependable data. It also needs a bi-directional flow of this data between upstream and downstream audiences. Without this data flow, implementing more sustainable choices within your sourcing and design phase can be challenging. However, with the right data-driven connectivity in place, brands and manufacturers can achieve a greater level of autonomy over their upstream supply chains. This can have significant implications when it comes to meeting evolving downstream demands from consumers and regulators alike.
4. Optimizing end-of-life processes
The materials sourced and the designs used in the early stages of your product’s lifecycle can have a huge impact on the very last stage. This includes recycling, repurposing, and responsible disposal. By considering the product’s full lifecycle from the very start, brands can design products that are easier to disassemble, recycle, or repurpose at the end of their useful life. This proactive approach enables a smoother transition towards circularity, reducing waste and the product’s environmental impact.
Embracing responsible end-of-life processes ensures that products contribute positively to the circular economy. This is true both during their use phase and after they have served their primary purpose. However, to ensure this positive contribution, it’s essential to secure the bi-directional flow of data across the supply chain. This ensures the right decisions in the sourcing and design stage. It also allows for flexibility should recycling or disposal requirements change, which ultimately impacts the entire product journey.
inriver: The PIM solution for transparent sourcing and design
To create truly circular product journeys, brands and manufacturers need to begin with the sourcing and design stages of their products. This means onboarding data from all supply chain partners into a single source of centralized data truth. This truth can then be communicated across the entire value chain. However, this is only possible with the right software solution in place. That’s why the inriver PIM is built on a foundation of a fully extensible data model. This data model supports data onboarding from across even the most complex supply chain. This secures the bi-directional flow of upstream and downstream data needed for fully transparent sourcing and design.
The composable, multi-tenant inriver PIM offers the most comprehensive Product Information Management solution on the market. Powered by transparent data onboarded from across the supply chain, you can be sure you have a solid foundation for even the most complex downstream demands. With built-in syndication and digital shelf analytics technology, advanced data-sharing, and more, inriver offers the complete solution for every business in every market.