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  • Writer's pictureBruce Rubin

How to Build Supply Change Resilience

Has your company experienced supply chain issues during the past year? Natural disasters, trade wars, tariffs, political instability, social unrest, and a global pandemic each have negative impacts on global supply chains. Only 21% of companies indicate that they have a resilient network. Coming out of the pandemic, increasing that resilience will be a priority.

Supply chain resilience is a company’s ability to spot, react to and recover from a disruption. To build supply chain resilience you need a plan that you are actively working on and updating before any type of disaster strikes.

Although there are multiple ways to bolster supply chain resilience, a key aspect is building relationships with suppliers at all levels. Getting to know your suppliers, visiting their operations, regardless of location, and having them visit yours is key. Having that relationship when things are running smoothly means the lines of communication can more easily stay open when there are disruptions.

Making sure both sides win in a supply chain relationship makes it more resilient. If there is a sudden demand spike, your relationship should ensure that you get what your company needs in a timely, cost efficient manner. Most suppliers will value maintaining relationships over the opportunity to turn a higher profit in the short term, or during a disruption.

Share manufacturing information with your suppliers. Treat them as a valued partner to your business. When prices inevitably rise, brainstorming with a supplier can uncover alternate ways of getting the job done, possibly saving both parties money. Visiting them and hosting them to visit you means that they know how your company works and you know how they work. That knowledge can mean the difference in paying more for the product or jointly creating a quality, less expensive substitution.

Partnering with your suppliers instead of treating them as an adversary offers the benefit of making your supply chain more resilient and creates a positive feedback loop where the supplier is confident that you have their interest in mind along with your own.

If you are unsure about how to begin planning for increased supply chain resilience, feel free to reach out to us. Together we can brainstorm how to optimize your supply chain and build in the resilience to weather disruptions.

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