Emerging blockchain-based supply chain transparency technology will require the development of new supply chain compliance processes and documentation. Policy and procedure documents that refer to the collection of information by means of the completion of forms or the entry of data in a spreadsheet will need to evolve as an increasing number of goods are attached to ledger entries. Internal and external audit and assurance exercises will also need to evolve to accommodate this shift.
The use of blockchain technology in supply chains has the capacity to dramatically increase the amount and accuracy of information available to businesses and consumers, but it will also precipitate and necessitate significant changes to the legal and audit systems that it touches.
IBM has also been actively helping form a slew of blockchain-focused companies and industry initiatives around various supply chains. For example, it’s working with companies like retailer Walmart Inc. to trace food products, and earlier this year helped start an effort to track international cargo. Providing technologies to such projects is a huge growth opportunity for Big Blue, which has already grabbed the biggest portion of the world’s blockchain-related spending.