Achieving Greater Supply Chain Agility
If the past two years have taught retailers and manufacturers anything, it is that they should expect the unexpected. Supply chain disruptions, which continue to be a prominent issue throughout many industries, have wreaked havoc on the processes and systems companies have spent years perfecting and becoming comfortable with. Companies now realize that to remain successful in the thick of a crisis, they must have a Plan B, and possibly even a Plan C. To better prepare for future interruptions, organizations nationwide are finding new ways to increase supply chain agility as they emerge from the pandemic and navigate other disruptions.
What is Supply Chain Agility?
Supply chain agility refers to the ability of an organization in the supply chain to be nimble and react quickly to market changes or disruptions. An important component of this is also a company’s ability to predict and prepare for unexpected events so they can pivot or bounce back quickly. To enhance their supply chain agility, retailers, manufacturers, and distributors may consider implementing procedures that reduce risk and support resiliency:
- Utilize an omnichannel fulfillment strategy to source from several suppliers so there are backups. In the instance that one supplier fails, the omnichannel strategy allows a company to have secondary and tertiary suppliers ready to fulfill the order in a timely manner.
- Implement what is known as ”bridge” manufacturing, which enables the availability of viable alternatives to fill gaps in the supply chain when needed. Recent events have proven that product and material shortages cause long-lasting disruptions. Having the ability to create alternatives to bridge these gaps is crucial to the agility of the supply chain.
- Increase supply chain visibility to track all the moving parts, giving a company a clearer picture of what is working and what may need some attention. This level of insight into the supply chain allows manufacturers, retailers, and distributors to tweak and refine processes daily, rather than learn about an inefficiency only after a problem occurs. Companies striving to enhance their supply chain visibility to become more agile may use recyclable, lightweight iGPS plastic pallets, which incorporate smart features that make them traceable throughout the supply chain. These features allow companies to capture data at any point of distribution, ensuring better planning, efficiency, and helping to lower Total Cost of Business (TCOB).
- Employ demand planning processes to analyze sales trends as well as consumer behaviors to optimize a business’s profitability, efficiency, and ability to forecast and meet customer needs. Effective demand planning can allow a company to predict what is to come and align its staffing, inventories, and other resources to prepare for the predicted demand.
Importance of Supply Chain Agility
Supply chain disruptions will continue to be a persistent challenge. As the industry continues to navigate the impacts of the pandemic and other worldwide events that have impacted the supply chain, organizations that take steps to adapt and remain nimble will increase their likelihood of coming out on top.
Companies committed to enhancing supply chain agility use iGPS plastic pallets for all their shipping needs. Our lightweight, recyclable plastic pallets can help reduce harmful emissions and lower your Total Cost of Business. For more information, contact us at 1-866-557-0047, email a specialist at [email protected], or visit our contact page.