The value chains of consumer products are undergoing a change. Platform economy, e-commerce growth and new logistics technologies are driving the change while also enabling new business models. Changes in consumer behaviour towards the use of the Internet for the purchase of goods and increased international competition are also contributing to the change.
The current, centralized distribution system that connects producers, manufacturers, online shops and consumers in a linear manner stands in contrast to the diverse and multiple needs of the consumers, thereby limiting customer experience but also creating a bottleneck at the last mile delivery. Achieving optimal and customized delivery services according to consumers' needs, wishes and concerns (e.g. impact of deliveries to the environment) requires value chain stakeholders to embed openness, flexibility and agility in their business models.
Utilisation of open data as a prerequisite for a functioning open consumer-centric ecosystem
Based on the idea of open data, companies can work together to produce more diverse value for consumers in a profitable way and co-create new business both in Finland and on the international market. Real-time open data can be used to steer the cooperation between companies and to recognize meaningful opportunities for combining resources across organisational and industry boundaries. This new operating model will also change the roles and necessary capabilities of companies in the supply chain sector.
The role of consumers is growing
In the new open data driven business model, the role of consumers will also grow. The increased and diverse needs of consumers for the delivery of goods will be the main drive and result in the convergence of various operators. A consumer-centric mindset allows for the smoother planning of optimal and customized product deliveries but also generates new opportunities for operators to ideate, develop and offer services that add extra value to consumers' experience from the actual deliveries.
As international competition grows, Finnish operators must differentiate themselves, understand the needs of customers and create new distribution concepts to cope with the increasingly tough competition.
Finland as a pioneer in consumer-centric last mile logistics and services
Launched at the end of last year, the OPEN MODE project has a starting point in the open consumer-centric ecosystem vision according to which conventional supply chains will be replaced with efficient, smart and decentralised real-time logistics services.
OPEN MODE project is a forerunner research project towards the vision of an open consumer-centric ecosystem. Its aim is to be a springboard for Finnish companies interested in new market structures, where efficient, local, distributed, smart real time logistics services rise to replace centralized logistics solutions. The ecosystem is open for all platforms and stakeholders.
The OPEN MODE project is coordinated by VTT and its consortium partners include eNexus, Hakonen and OGOship as well as the University of Helsinki as a research partner. These companies are working on the development and provision of open data-based smart last mile solutions, integrating various services in the deliveries of goods to consumers.
The companies participating in the OPEN MODE project get to be involved in developing a new kind of cooperation model: "The OPEN MODE project provides a possibility for the partner companies to create a framework for an open logistics ecosystem and pilot different parts of the network.", says OGOship's CEO, Timo Toivonen.
The project will be carried out until the end of 2020, in collaboration with the Business Finland, as part of the open consumer-centric ecosystem. The results of the project will be synthesized to a roadmap that presents the steps towards an open consumer-centric ecosystem.