4 requirements for supply chain traceability in partner data sharing

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Group of multhiethnic business people working together, brainstorming in office

Data sharing is hard. Even when it comes to internal traceability and tracing something as simple as a die in semiconductor manufacturing, the ability to bring together data that’s sitting in specialized siloed systems owned and operated by an independent group in your organization is near impossible. (Or wildly costly to accomplish and maintain.)

Solving for traceability across external partner data ecosystems? Good luck.

But we’re optimists here at Vendia. And we’re fiercely persistent, too.

And when you want to solve for something, it’s good to know what an ideal solution can achieve. So, when it comes to data traceability requirements, here’s the guiding vision behind the Vendia Share solution for traceability use cases.

4 requirements for external traceability

Data traceability systems should meet the following four requirements:

  1. Track the product journey from start to end
  2. Control data sharing Share just the right information without exposing IP and sensitive data to partners
  3. Audit every step and change in the product journey
  4. Deliver a single source of truth that cannot be overwritten or disputed

Track the product journey from start to end

For internal traceability, the start and end of a journey are within the organization’s boundaries. For external traceability, the journey can start in a fabless facility, pass through its transport system to the fabrication center, and end in outsourced semiconductor assembly and test (OSAT) providers. In the future state, some might say the end isn’t the end until the chip makes it into the hardware consumers’ hands or into a recycling program.

Control data sharing

For both internal and external traceability, if you can’t control sensitive data or intellectual property access as a standard, that’s a deal breaker. Full stop.

Audit every step and change in the product journey

The information recorded in the multi-party traceability should record the owner, timestamp, metadata, and actual information for both internal and external audits. The metadata and data recorded should be immutable.

In case of a correction, traceability systems should update and record it as a new version of the truth without overwriting the previous history. Both previous history and the new version of truth should be visible to all parties collaborating on a traceability system.

Deliver a single source of truth that cannot be overwritten or disputed

Only an internal department will trust the centralized systems owned and operated by an organization and secured in their private data center’s four walls. (And even that’s not always the case.) But an external organization has no reason to trust its partners’ centralized system, especially in cases of conflicting data and disputes concerning high-impact issues like product recalls. Data-owning organizations have controls to mutate versions of truth intentionally or mistakenly, and that undercuts trust. Therefore, for multi-party data exchange, the source should be consistent and indisputable across multiple parties.

The indisputable system of truth will also record information that participating organizations can use to prove and report regulatory compliance related to location-based regulations on material and components imports used in the die fabrication. Participating organizations can also use this system to exchange information related to Scope 1, 2, and 3 ESG tracking specifically for sustainability reporting.

Operate in a trusted, secure data exchange and get supply chain traceability with Vendia Share

Vendia Share has developed a custom blockchain implementation you can use to build secure, performant-distributed systems for multi-party collaboration inside and outside your four walls. Talk with our team about your supply chain data visibility challenges or request a demo to see how end-to-end traceability is achievable, quick to implement, and cost-effective.

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