Supply chain transparency: creating stakeholder value

Supply chain transparency: creating stakeholder value

Supply Chain Transparency unlocks the way for companies to exert complete control over their value chains and build on resilience, sustainability and growth.

Ramanathan Venkataraman

Senior manager

KPMG Nederland


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Lighthouse with glowing lamp

Today's business climate is becoming more and more interconnected and complex. Customer needs and expectations are increasing and businesses, while meeting these expectations, are required to be valuable, profitable, flexible, safe and cost-efficient. Such aspects lead to intertwined and multiplex supply chains that can be difficult to administer. Non-transparent supply chains and indistinct upstream operations can leave companies sightless, resulting in greater uncertainty, a higher exposure to risks and supply chain disruptions. The Supply Chain Worldwide Survey revealed that 70% of the companies surveyed perceive their supply chain as 'very' or 'extremely' complex.

This article is the first of a series of articles aiming to provide you with clear and helpful insights into what supply chain transparency means and why it is essential for companies to embrace it. 

It will highlight the added value that supply chain transparency brings. In addition, it sheds light on the capabilities that are required to tackle challenges and to gain full transparency.

What is supply chain transparency?

Achieving supply chain transparency is the fundamental process of increasing visibility, traceability and transparency by collecting and sharing information throughout the supply chain and communicating it to authorised internal and external stakeholders. It provides the ability to gain insights, learn and act on supply chain information to make better informed decisions.

We distinguish three levels of supply chain transparency:

  1. Internal transparency
  2. Value chain transparency
  3. End-to-end supply chain transparency
Exhibit 1: Supply chain transparency requires key actors to enable visibility and traceability on multiple levels
Infographic sct chain

Value of transparency

The drive for transparency covers different elements depending and requires involvement of multiple stakeholder groups. Although this makes transparency challenging, it is a very valuable and essential exercise. When different groups successfully collaborate, value is realized across key business units and business functions.

Exhibit 2: Transparency is recognized as one of the key C-level issues in supply chain management that requires attention to deliver growth and control risk
Infographic sct value

Capabilities needed to deliver transparency

Having the right mix of capabilities is fundamental in achieving true supply chain transparency and realizing its value potential.

Exhibit 3: Different capabilities are required to make transparency a success within and across organizations
Infographic sct capabilities


In today's world, supply chain transparency has become crucial in order to handle uncertainty, exposure to risks and supply chain disruptions. Companies that implement full transparency receive multiple benefits enhancing business value across the complete chain. However, obtaining transparency is a challenging path. Combining the right set of skills is essential to pave the path to transparent supply chains that are built on resilience, sustainability and growth.

Want to know more?

Please contact Ramanathan Venkataraman, Audrey Daluz, Hylke Schaaf or Sabine van Dooren if you want to know how KPMG can support your company. Our team has extensive experience in combining the right expertise and tools to strengthen supply chains.  

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