From high inflation to rapidly shifting labor requirements, supply chain professionals continue to face myriad challenges. But there are most definitely opportunities to begin working past these issues in order to achieve resilient supply chains.
Opportunity 1: Tailor strategies to the business. No matter how many ways companies aim to optimize their networks or how many investments they make in digitization, there’s simply no one-size-fits-all solution for supply chain management. It can be tempting to follow the recommendations of large consulting companies or try to parallel what Fortune 100 companies are doing, but no supply chain should be designed just like another. Yes, some operational technologies need to be applied in a certain way, but considering what matters to each individual company and how it defines and grows uniquely is essential.
Opportunity 2: Rethink business operations. Many times, organizations try to run their supply chain organization in partnership with business operations teams, whose primary role is to manage marketing, sales and financial decisions. Because it’s not their focus, business operations teams may have a difficult time surfacing and aggregating the amount of data that the supply chain really needs and presenting it in a helpful way. Collaborate with business operations teams to rethink the current approach to managing the supply chain on a daily and a shift-level basis. The strategy may need to be updated as systems and tools evolve.
Opportunity 3: Develop transparency in partnerships. More and more companies are relying on third party logistics (3PL) providers for all kinds of tasks. To maximize these partnerships, it’s essential to create transparency at both the relationship and data levels. Be sure to provide a high level of information-sharing and get executive input on key metrics to strengthen relationships and overall resilience. Visibility between supply chain organizations and their 3PL providers — whether related to the status of inventory, labor, productivity or efficiency — is critical.
Opportunity 4: Update labor strategies. Many of the tactics being used today are outdated or never worked well to begin with. This is often due to obsolete labor data. Making sure all data is correct and up to date will give supply chain organizations more confidence to execute the latest and most effective strategies.
Opportunity 5: Provide global visibility. It’s critical to employ accurate, real-time inventory and status visibility across facilities. To be more efficient with fewer physical employees, visibility across the entire supply chain network must be prioritized. Ensure data is readily available to make the best possible decisions.
Expand your resilience knowledge and skills with the soon-to-be-released ASCM Supply Chain Resilience Certificate.