Building Resiliency in Your Supply Chain Operations

The need for greater resilience in supply chain operations has never been more apparent than it is today. We’re closing in on nearly two years since the COVID-19 pandemic began, and companies worldwide are feeling the strain of the resulting supply chain crisis. Businesses have learned and adapted at record speed over the past year, but it’s now clear that advance preparedness for the unexpected is essential.

When it comes to the supply chain, there are many ways you can build resilience into your operations. The best methods for your business depend on your facilities, your team, and your capabilities. If you’re considering ways to make your supply chain more resilient, read on.

COVID-19 in Retrospect: Preventing Future Supply Chain Woes

For supply chain companies, one of the primary outcomes of COVID-19 has been realizing the necessity of preventing future similar strain. With lockdowns, workforce reductions, and the e-commerce boom, many organizations were left unprepared for delays and overwhelmed. In retrospect, supply chain leaders are considering what preventive measures might have alleviated the strain.

Going forward, leaders are adopting future operational strategies and many are in the planning or implementation phase. “Creating Resilience Amid Disruption,” a 2020 survey conducted by Council of Supply Chain Management (CSCMP), BluJay Solutions, and Adelante SCM, revealed that 75% of respondents expect to make moderate to extensive changes in their supply chain operations.

Respondents said they planned to focus on improving in multiple areas across the supply chain, both internally and externally. The top three areas, largely relationship-driven and workforce-driven, include:

  • Building stronger relationships with suppliers and vendors (53%). It’s important to have more impactful relationships with the companies you source your goods from. When operations are impacted by events you can’t control, those connections will remain solid.
  • Making sure team members are cross-trained to cover a variety of tasks (49%). Cross-train your team and bring in members who will contribute to streamlining and strengthening your operations across the board.
  • Ensuring their base of suppliers is more diverse (43%). Make sure you’re not getting all your goods or materials from just one or two suppliers. You need a variety of sources so that your supply chain won’t break if one supplier goes down.

In addition to improving all levels of communication across your supply chain, consider also strengthening customer service. Transparency through every step of the supply chain, including communication with the end-user, will help your organization manage risk and impact more effectively.

Operational Considerations for a More Resilient Supply Chain

It’s essential to build new operational strategies that minimize risk. For example, many of the recent and current supply chain disruptions we’re experiencing have been due to a lack of personnel to complete the volume of work at hand. Integrating the appropriate technology tools and automation can ease the strain of a leaner workforce.

Take possible internal and external pressures into account as you build your strategy. Tightening up your operations, focusing on continuous improvement, and upgrading your facility and technology to streamline your processes can positively impact your company going forward.

Next Steps

It’s clear that in order for businesses to survive, advance preparedness for the unexpected is essential.

Contact IndPro specialists to learn what your options are to create more resilient operations. We’ll help you plan a holistic approach to risk mitigation that will offer a broader set of possibilities for meeting any unforeseen challenges.

IndPro Services

IndPro Services, a leader in U.S. Federal Government and commercial systems procurement, provides efficient, innovative, and results-driven solutions. Dedicated to improving efficiency in warehouse and distribution center operations, we work on the same side of the table with you to help you procure the best possible solution for your specific application.