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Build resilience into your supply chain

The Coronavirus outbreak has caused major disruption to global economies. Manufacturers are impacted – not for the first time but given the mammoth proportions of the current crisis and the rigid ways they tend to function, the COVID-19 pandemic will certainly tax their resilience. With lack of visibility, reduced inventories, manual operations and fixed processes, they will be forced to review their budgets. Add a backdrop of factory shutdowns led by social distancing measures and uncertainty around customer demand in many areas, and manufacturers will have no options but to make customer engagement channels their priority.

The role of Digital Intelligence

Manufacturers can leverage digital capabilities, automation and real-time scenario-based simulation of the entire manufacturing execution system to successfully implement resilience. Advanced analytics and supply chain dashboards provide key insights on specific KPIs. These can help in making better decisions and optimizing operating cost and inventory levels during disruptive times.
For example, during COVID-19 outbreak, if a company decides to operate at 50% capacity by shutting one assembly, the entire network would know the impact of its closure. The system will send alerts to planners so they can take decisions regarding alternate sourcing and work out business continuity/ contingency plans to fulfil orders on-time/ within budget. To combat inventory-specific issues, companies may need to think about their channel strategy and figure out “Direct-to-Market” channels to move inventory faster and increase/ maintain inventory turns.

Money matters

Moreover, companies can review their CAPEX budgets in IT & Technology and be more flexible. A pay-as-you-go OPEX based contract for some elements could be the need of the hour. Adopting activity value analysis method to restructure the IT infrastructure and contract setup to deliver decent short-term savings can work in the favor of supply chain.

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