Supply chain issues are nothing new. However, for many, especially in the retail, construction, manufacturing and wholesale industries, one event drove home just how fragile supply chains really are, the global Covid-19 pandemic. In fact, a recent report by McKinsey notes that companies in these sectors can expect 10 years of supply chain disruption, which are likely to erase half a year's worth of profits. With all the uncertainty of the last 18 months, it’s no surprise many of these businesses now want to know how to strengthen supply chain.
With about 80% of supply chain disruptions originating from downstream suppliers, this is a tough question and not an issue you can avoid altogether. However, there are still things smart companies can do to ensure that supply chain volatility doesn’t bring business to a grinding halt.
Assess your current supply chain
One of the first things any company should do when they want to know how to strengthen supply chain against potential issues is to assess where you stand today. While this might sound like a strenuous exercise, it doesn’t have to be. We have put together a quick 15 question quiz that gives businesses a jumping off point in the understanding how strong their current supply chain is and where their major weaknesses may lie.
Ready to find out how strong your supply chain really is?
Once you’ve answered all 15 questions, you will see a submit button at the bottom of the page. Click that to be taken to your results.
Understanding your results
On the results page, you will see a score ranging from 1 to 15. This is the number that will tell you how strong your supply chain is. Don’t worry about which answers the results page tells you are correct or incorrect. There really are no right or wrong answers. Rather, these are just a mechanism for scoring the quiz.
If you score between:
- 12 and 15: Severe Risk — Your supply chain is chaotic and riddled with untimely or inaccurate data. Manual processes inflate labor costs and sink productivity.
- 8 and 11: High Risk—You struggle to match supplier shipments with customer demand. Disconnected processes and systems limit your ability to be competitive.
- 4 and 7: Moderate Risk—You’re doing an excellent job of mitigating supply chain disruptions. Continue to monitor the situation and look for ways to automate business processes where possible.
- 0 and 3: Low Risk—Congratulations! You have mastered using automation and real-time data to limit your supply chain disruption. Keep up the good work. Continue looking for ways to streamline and improve business processes.
Where to go from here?
With the unprecedented supply chain disruptions which have become commonplace in the last couple years, large companies can afford expensive supply chain consultants and protective redundancies that smaller businesses just can’t. However, there still are some things you can do. One of the most popular solutions many SMBs are turning to protect against supply chain disruption is the modern ERP.
How to strengthen supply chain with modern ERP?
If you currently are experiencing moderate-to-severe risk for supply chain disruption, a modern ERP can help you shore up your supply chain in a variety of ways.
- Replace time-consuming and error-prone manual processes with automated, accurate ones.
- Join formerly disconnected systems so that you have access to real-time inventory and customer data.
- Facilitate communication between you and your suppliers and improve record organization.
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