Introducing Virtual Inventory Environments

There is a huge amount of data present within supply chains. To achieve in-transit visibility (which is the particular challenge that Entopy focuses on) these data sources need to be brought together.

The challenge is that the data sit’s in silos across multiple stakeholders involved in the supply chain. Stakeholders are often separate entities and therefore, data sharing needs to be targeted in order to overcome privacy concerns. The systems in operation handle a specific part of the movement of goods, meaning lots of very different data types need to be brought together in a meaningful way.

The Entopy platform overcomes the challenges of combining these disparate data sources and uses unique, proprietary technologies to do so.

‘Virtual Inventory Environments’ is a unique innovation from Entopy that overcomes these challenges. This autonomous technology has the capabilities to combine disparate data sources to provide visibility as goods move through supply chain networks.

‘Virtual inventory environments’ are essentially ‘objects’ that represent individual consignments. Inventory data, vehicle allocation, vehicle location, etc. are sourced from multiple systems connected to the Entopy platform. The Entopy platform then uses ‘intelligent triggers’ to determine and capture events regarding that object.

Think about it like this. We know the target consignment. To know where it is, we need to know what vehicle it’s travelling on and where that vehicle is. The combination of these sources creates a whole virtual ‘object’ from which we can capture information.

The environments focus on specific consignments. The vehicle that is moving the consignment of interest may have multiple other consignments on board. But the ‘Virtual Inventory Environments’ only use the vehicle and location in relation to the specific consignment. What else is on the vehicle is irrelevant and is neither capture nor presented.

Instances are spun up autonomously and closed down once redundant, i.e. once the consignment has been delivered. This means the target vehicle is only tracked when the target consignment is on board.

An environment can be populated with as much or little data as one wants, for example, associated documentation for the consignment or condition data such as temperature or humidity if those additional data sources were present.

Entopy uses a combination of data from connected systems, typically OMS, TMS, Telematics, and IoT. When a consignment has been dispatched, the delivery scheduled and vehicle allocated, an environment is created. The Entopy systems pulls data from the telematics of the target vehicle, using geo-fences and other triggers to capture events and determine when to close the environment down, in doing so, ceasing tracking.

Once set up, the ‘Virtual Inventory Environment’ technology works autonomously, spinning-up and spinning-down instances to deliver the required in-transit visibility.

The ability to combine disparate data sources in a targeted way enables in-transit visibility across multi-stakeholder supply chain networks. Entopy’s innovation provides the missing ‘connectivity’ piece in the puzzle of achieving in-transit visibility.