Supply Chain Resilience is at the heart of current supply chain management thinking. Understanding the concept, and where to invest in resilience, can lead to supply chains that quickly respond to and recover from costly disruptions. Companies who have more resilient supply chains weathered the storm much better than those caught unprepared. Supply chain problems don’t have to be as extreme, as the COVID-19 shutdowns were to have negative effects on a business. Working on supply chain resilience is the best way to prepare your business for the next disruption, no matter how large it may be.
6 Ways to Improve Supply Chain Resilience
There are a few steps any business can take to provide a layer of resilience in their supply chain. Rather than hoping we never have another major supply chain disruption, follow the tips below to create a plan for when it does.
Spread out Your Inventory
Whenever possible, try to spread your inventory out across multiple locations. Everything from broken equipment to severe weather events can make it difficult to quickly access items in a warehouse. By having multiple locations to draw from, such disruptions are much less likely to occur.
A good inventory management system should be put into place. The ability to quickly find the supplies across multiple locations and manage demand for your warehouses is vital for proper supply chain visibility and for avoiding disruptions caused by inventory issues.
Close Communication with Suppliers
Poor communication with suppliers decreases supply chain visibility and opens your business up to delays. In addition to using software that allows you to track
Work with Multiple Suppliers
Many businesses have favorite suppliers they’re loyal to. While we just went over the importance of forging a strong relationship with suppliers, limiting that relationship to a smaller number increases the chance of disruption. Often, what causes delays with one supplier will not have an effect on another. Sourcing your materials from a diverse group of suppliers, located in diverse regions, will minimize the impact when one experiences delays.
Add More Carriers
This tip is like adding more suppliers and relies on the same logic. You’ve likely noticed that if you order something from a large online retailer, the carrier that brings your package will differ from order to order. This helps ensure there’s a backup carrier should something go wrong with the primary choice.
Shipping carriers have different rates and policies for different conditions. By working with multiple carriers, you can pick the carrier with the most favorable rates for each individual order.
Be Mindful of the Data
Businesses no longer need to rely on intuition or spreadsheet calculations to provide supply chain
A good data analysis will also give you deeper insights into your
Customers today expect to be kept in the loop about the pending arrival of their package. Modern technology allows you to eliminate data silos, reduce bottlenecks, and improve supply chain visibility.
Informing the customer when a problem is detected that may impact the arrival of their product will prevent them from growing frustrated as they wait for a shipment notification that doesn’t come. Building this level of transparency has the side effect of making your whole operation more efficient and further reducing the problems caused by disruptions.