When disaster strikes and businesses are brought to their knees, the scientific laws of evolution apply. In other words, it is the companies that are positioned to be flexible and nimble that will survive in the face of disruption. If your company’s supply chain flow has suffered due to the unprecedented global pandemic, it is imperative that you implement corrective measures right now in order to adapt to the new reality.
Bring Your Best Brains Into The Game
In light of the seriousness of the current situation, you need all hands on deck. One of the best ways to guide resources in your direction is to set up a centralized command center. Take a panoramic look at your entire company to determine who the smartest and most creative players are, and then pull out all the stops to obtain their buy-in. No doubt, that will also require high-level negotiations with executives to free up these valuable insiders.
Change Your Operational Priorities
Up until now, your company most likely focused primarily on making a profit. You probably examined this electronic parts supplier and that competing vendor, basing your final decision solely on your bottom line. In today’s milieu, you might need to pay more now in order to keep the cash and products flowing in spite of the fact that your profit margin might suffer.
Seek Alternate Sources
If your organization is like most, you have worked with the same suppliers for years, unwilling to make a change because of the cost and the complex computations that are involved. For better or worse, you can no longer afford to remain with your current vendor simply because you are comfortable with them and reluctant to rock the boat.
If there is anything that the pandemic has spotlighted, it is that global businesses have become overly dependent on a small and highly specialized stream of suppliers from China. If at all possible, your long-term goal must involve diversifying your sources of raw materials.
Digitize Your Procedures
Up-and-coming innovations such as artificial intelligence and machine learning are revolutionizing supply chain management. Aided by them, procurement specialists no longer need to use antiquated analog methods to research the best vendors or to predict risks. Artificial intelligence, for example, can automate and speed up the vetting process by conducting a thorough, intelligence-based scan of the entire internet.
Armed with the information that these procedures glean, human specialists can efficiently select the suppliers that represent the lowest risks and the highest probability of reliability and sustainability over time.
In today’s global business arena, many dangers threaten the status quo. Wars, new tariffs, terrorist attacks, and natural disasters are just a few of the looming threats, not to mention the possibility of another pandemic.
Businesses like yours cannot afford to embrace the familiar at the risk of losing their competitive edge. Your first step is to reimagine your supply chain. Then do everything you can to become as nimble and creative as possible. Your company’s very survival may depend upon it.
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