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Cleaning industry to get ready for blockchain

17 September 2019

Many in the professional cleaning industry have yet to hear about blockchain. However, there is a good reason for this. While it has been used in the financial industry since The Great Recession, it is just now making its way into sectors such as distribution and, very soon, professional cleaning.

"A blockchain system is essentially an electronic ledger," says Michael Wilson, vice president of marketing and packaging for AFFLINK, a global leader in distribution and supply chain management. 

"Like a ledger or a spreadsheet, it keeps track of transactions and interactions among many different parties all at the same time."

However, Wilson adds that blockchain software technology is much more than this and is not a fad nor a - here today/gone tomorrow - technology. 

Because of this, he says distributors and members of the professional cleaning industry should be aware of the following: 

·      Parties in a blockchain are referred to as the blockchain's "peer-to-peer network. "In the professional cleaning industry, these parties could include, for instance, manufacturers, distributors, end-customers, facility managers, and others".

·      Because all the ledgers are interconnected, any transaction posted on one ledger will appear on all ledgers shared among the group simultaneously.

·      All changes are made instantly for all in the peer-to-peer group to see at the same time. Further, everyone knows who changed what, and the result of

these changes.

·      Transactions in a blockchain are irreversible. This means all transactions are locked in. If one ledger posting must be changed, it means the entire ledger of transactions will need to be changed and recomputed.

·      Blockchains often offer what is called "programmability". Usually, this refers to the add-on software programs that can, for instance, project delivery times, costs and expenses, profits, and more.

As to what blockchain brings to the distribution and jansan table, Wilson says it helps improve transparency, boosts operating efficiencies, reduces transaction processing times, enhances workflow. 

"And most important, builds trust because everyone in the blockchain has access to the same information all at the same time."