Doesn’t this word sound familiar…? In the wake of the cryptocurrency, you should have definitely come across Blockchain technology. Don’t regret if you have paid a deaf ear to this techie term, you are here and you are testing the waters of it…! Bitcoin, which has witnessed a humungous success and is just about to change the demographics in many spheres of our daily life; is based on Blockchain. This is indeed an ingenious invention and is the brainchild of a person or group of people known by the pseudonym, Satoshi Nakamoto. Ever since this weird idea was infused to life, it has evolved rapidly and transformed into something greater and bigger.
Let’s take a break from this flicker and get back to basics :
What is Blockchain….!?
A mere textbook definition and indeed the true sense of it can be defined as :
Blockchain is a ledger of records organized in ‘blocks’ that are linked together by cryptographic validation. It is a digital storage of consensus truth.
From the book I reckon to all the Blockchain enthusiasts:
“The blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.” – Don & Alex Tapscott, authors Blockchain Revolution (2016).
Why Blockchain ?
Did it go over your head…? Don’t worry…! Let’s grasp the essence of it
Lets Take an example of Supply chain Management , The biggest problems with the supply chain management industry can be addressed by improving access to data for all stakeholders in a trust-minimized way.
Let’s consider an example of Supply chain Management. All complex problems and challenges faced in the supply chain management industry can be resolved by improving access to data for all stakeholders in a trust-minimized way. You read it right…!
Take a break and think about it. You’ll agree with the statement.
The supply chain is made up of a wisely woven network of manufacturers, suppliers, logistics, transport, retailers, insurers, bankers, farmers and customers (The list would still go on…!).
What if every single product, material, fiber or grain has a unique identity and can be tracked at every point along the supply chain..? Imagine every personnel from all the sectors involved in this context are equipped with this real time information..!
That would be a true game changer.
Let’s visualize supply chain of food products. Farmers produce the food grains and they are sent to storage warehouses before processing it by the processing unit. Upon the completion of processing, they are sent to the manufacturing unit. The finished product will then be shipped to the distributors and further to the retailers. Farmers, warehouses, food processers, manufacturing units, distributor and retails; that’s a lot to track and it is where the ledgers come into play and track the happenings of the entire cycle.
Farmers,Warehouse, Food professor,Manufactures,Distributors, Retailers , its a lot to track and that’s where ledgers come in to track all these transactions
Still not convinced how the real time data can make any difference..? Let’s consider the below from the same context:
Numerous critical factors are monitored and any adverse affects can be averted. For example, the temperature of the food containers involved in the supply chain is crucial in order to ensure that the quality of the food remains unaffected.
It is exactly where the BlockChain can come to our rescue. It can send real time updates on each process using IOT devices to keep track of the raw materials quality at every stage
Wondering how…? In this case, we can deploy RFID / Digital Token tagged to each container. It can supply us with the information related to all the factors involved like quality of food material, temperature, location at every stage in the chain. Isn’t this the next level of supply chain..?
Let’s sneak peek into this next generation supply chain.
A truck is loaded with raw materials and has just left the warehouse. A secure message is sent to all the stakeholders. They can track the exact location, temperature of the container, quantity and estimated time of arrival. The truck has arrived to the food processing unit and another message is sent to the unit asking them to prepare for unloading. Post processing of the food, the quality, quantity and other parameters are automatically analyzed and a calculated amount is displayed in no time to pay the farmers. Doesn’t it sound crazy….?
Salesforce Role in this process
It’s time we speak about what Salesforce can accomplish in this regard. Salesforce platform has powerful analytics, automation and communication; which can make this process effective. Configure Prices Quote Solution by Salesforce is capable of generating prices based on quote automatically. Integrated services between Salesforce and Blockchain enables us to track and display real time information.
Distributed App(Dapp) suite is specially designed for Blockchain integration with Salesforce. Currently this App is avilable in Salesforce App Exchange. This Suite provides Blockchain Engineer, Ethereum Application Manager and Hyperledger Application Manager.
The information from RFID/Digital Tokens will be transferred to Salesforce from IOT cloud, where the stakeholders can track the quality factors of the product
Salesrep creates a quote for Raw materials via Opportunity, once the opportunity is won, Sales rep will create another order with product details. If Dapps is installed in Salesforce, the Dapp suite will setup the data and send the same to the Blockchain. Here, the quality parameters are tracked and are reverted to Salesforce, where the stakeholders can view the details of quality, location and other prominent parameters. Not to forget, this is a real time data….! This can prove to be immensely helpful to the store manager, farmer, processing unit manager to understand the history of the product. The quality information maintained based on the damage and other factors would be considered and the payment can be automated.
Using Salesforce Reports, we can track the other information using powerful UI currently available in lightning platform.
Salesforce and Blockchain can prove to be effective to be implemented on Health, Insurance and other industries as well. The integration of Salesforce and Blockchain is the road to Damascus….!