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ASCM Insights

A Benchmark for Resilient Supply Chains

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This past week, President Biden signed an executive order that aims to fortify America’s supply chains, protect workers and avoid future shortages of critical components. Four key sectors were identified: pharmaceuticals, rare earth minerals, semiconductors and large-capacity batteries.

“Each of the four sectors identified by the order will undergo a 100-day review to assess vulnerabilities and areas for improvement,” Dartunorro Clark writes for NBC News. “Other sectors identified by the administration — such as biological preparedness, food production and transportation — will undergo one-year reviews to help the government foresee and correct mistakes.”

The New York Times notes that the initiative aligns with the global semiconductor shortage, which continues to scale back or altogether stop production at numerous automotive plants. In addition, White House officials say the order was prompted by the widespread shortage of personal protective equipment and supply chain issues at the onset of the pandemic.

Make resilience reality

After an incredibly difficult year, rife with disruption, supply chain professionals must commit to rebuilding better and stronger than we were before. All supply chains have a unique and important opportunity to learn from both the shocks of 2020 and how resilient organizations faced these rolling disasters. As management expert Peter Drucker famously said, the greatest danger in times of turbulence is to “act with yesterday’s logic.”

To that end, ASCM commissioned The Resilient Supply Chain Benchmark research report from The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). The report assessed modern supply chain resilience-building capabilities by evaluating the supply chains of 308 publicly traded companies. Interestingly, the industries highlighted this past week by the Biden Administration — pharmaceuticals, rare earth minerals, semiconductors and large-capacity batteries — align with many of those that are explored in the report.

The Resilient Supply Chain Benchmark provides insights into both operational and strategic supply chain resilience, enabling companies to identify and respond to sudden shocks and longer-term structural shifts. Coming in mid-March, ASCM and The EIU are taking this a step further with an interactive benchmark. This tool will enable users to pinpoint where their gaps are and better understand them in order to take appropriate action — internally, with partners and in context of the competition. This is the first initiative of its kind and one that will be invaluable for our global community.

Supply chain organizations don’t just have an incentive to build resilience; they have a mandate. And now with The Resilient Supply Chain Benchmark and the forthcoming interactive benchmark, they have the knowledge and tools to get there. 

Don’t miss ASCM CEO Abe Eshkenazi and The EIU’s Claire Casey discuss The Resilient Supply Chain Benchmark and key findings from the report. View the webinar.

About the Author

Abe Eshkenazi, CSCP, CPA, CAE CEO, ASCM

Abe Eshkenazi is chief executive officer at ASCM, the largest nonprofit association for supply chain and the global leader in supply chain organizational transformation and innovation. Prior to this, he was the managing director for the Operations Consulting Group of American Express Tax and Business Services. His leadership roles have included project management, business process redesign, and individual and organizational alignment. Eshkenazi may be contacted through editorial@ascm.org.

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