The COVID-19 pandemic challenged how businesses should operate. Employees were forced into their homes to reduce the spread of the virus, companies had to find new and ways to allow their employees to continue working or risk going out of business. One of the biggest challenges came as people were forced to order more products for delivering, making the already stressful situation even harder on key links in the supply chain. As we move out of COVID-19, we must be sure not to forget the lessons we learned.
Understanding How COVID-19 Impacted Supply Chains
To learn from the mistakes of the past, analyze what went wrong. COVID-19 was a perfect storm hitting supply chains. There has been plenty of analysis done on
Evolving Supply Chains to Better Handle Disruptions
The pandemic, taught us lessons the hard way: adaptations that were made to readjust to the temporary new reality. Other lessons come from the failures that led to that reality: steps that can be taken to mitigate the effects so things aren’t as bad should another worldwide emergency hit the globe.
1. Centralize Your Supply Operations
Ensuring maximum supply chain agility means ensuring maximum supply chain transparency. Before COVID-19 hit, the supply chain at many businesses was fragmented. It required repeated reviews and approvals from several people, each who may or may not have had access to the data that the others were using. Using a centralized supply chain management tool like
2. Make Better Demand Forecasts
Inventory-based businesses often struggle with keeping the right amount of stock on hand even in the best of times. This leads to space being taken up by some products in warehouses that could be put to better use, and other products being unavailable to fulfill consumer demand. Understanding these fluctuations requires accurate
3. Put Risk Management Front and Center
Risk management is all about looking at trends that are happening and predicting how negative factors will play out before they become a big problem. While no risk management solution is a crystal ball, having one in place will allow you to plan for unforeseen events before they happen so you’ll have an action plan in place ready to follow when they do. Risk management will also give you a heads-up when warning signs begin to show, so you can begin putting your plan in place early.
4. Implement Tabletop Exercises
Schools don’t wait until a fire hits to teach children how to safely exit the building. Nor do they rely on verbal instruction alone. Fire drills are an important part of every schoolchild’s life.
5. Switch Focus from Cost Savings to Revenue Assurance
6. Regionalize Your Supply Chain
7. Diversify Supply Chains
8. Communicate More Closely with Suppliers
Building a More Efficient Supply Chain with StockIQ
While we all hope that COVID-19 and its unprecedented impact on our lives was a once in a lifetime occurrence, we can’t count on that. Nor can we continue to operate our businesses in a way that will disadvantage its future generations of leaders. The pandemic has made it clear that it’s time to change the way we approach supply chain management. These are precisely the types of issues that StockIQ was designed to help you deal with.