Everyone is anxious to turn the calendar page next month. Industries have transformed dramatically as companies across the world rethink business models, restructure organizations, and adapt to ever-changing rules and regulations.
Virtually no industry has been spared the wrath of Covid 19. Of course, some industries have flourished and others born from the carnage. In 2020, we saw a dramatic change in the way consumers do business. The industry saw e-commerce and home delivery grow rapidly, as online shopping increased for the majority of consumers who were quarantined. Notably, e-commerce sales were up more than 31% at the end of June according to a CNBC report. We also saw volatility in the freight rates category in 2020 and expect that to continue in 2021.
Its likely to take the majority of 2021 to see a substantial return to anything resembling normal in the manufacturing, hospitality and trade show sectors among many others.
Some Planning Considerations Ahead
- Fine-tune your disaster response plan. Don’t file your COVID-19 response plan under “things we hope never happen again” just yet — even if we leave the worst of it behind in 2020. Take the lessons you have learned and use them to strengthen your action plan. Look at your supply chain through the lens of these three priorities:
- How are you going to ensure continuity of production and fulfillment when faced with supply and demand issues? Do you have an alternate supplier base standing by?
- Are you in a good position to maintain the flow of information? Are you embracing digital channels, collaboration technologies and paperless workflows?
- How do you foster employee health and well-being? Are there redundancies in place to keep the business running when labor is in short supply? Can you deliver contactless service?
- Get to know your suppliers. This year, with COVID-19, many companies learned a hard lesson in supplier diversification and why it’s critical to know your suppliers, including Tier 2 and Tier 3 suppliers. One 2020 study found that 162 of the Fortune 1000 had one or more Tier 1 suppliers in Wuhan, China, the city where coronavirus hit first. But when you include the Fortune 1000’s Tier 2 suppliers in the area, that number jumps to a whopping 938. With the right technology, you can gain a deeper understanding of your suppliers and communicate and collaborate more effectively with them.
- Take a close look at your sourcing strategy. As you act on what you learn about your suppliers and begin to re-analyze your sourcing needs, you may consider a balanced decoupling strategy. Companies are moving toward sourcing closer to home but recognize they can still benefit from global sourcing for commoditized products. Find the right balance between globalization and localization. What balance gives you the best resiliency?
- Visibility. This year, a lot of talk focuses on supply chain visibility. Design and technology together make visibility possible — eliminating data siloes and bottlenecks, building track-and-trace capabilities and AI-enabled cognitive insights into your supply chain. But it’s not enough to just have visibility. It’s how you use it that counts. Identifying risks and stopping them in their tracks. Rapidly identifying and locking in alternate suppliers to avoid disruptive demand and supply situations. Sensing change and pivoting to use it as a competitive edge. Visibility enables resilience.
Land Link Traffic Systems can help you plan for what is certainly bound to be a challenging time ahead. Contact us today for a complimentary review of your current supply chain protocols. 2021, a Look Ahead
Change is usually scary and unnerving. It can spark anger, sadness, and depression.
But change can be good. It can force us out of comfortable but limiting ruts. It can promote rapid growth in awareness, problem solving and self-sufficiency. Like solders returning from war, its time to rebuild our lives and our country.
2020 is undoubtedly a year of tremendous change for the entire world. But history tells us adversity often leads to opportunity. It’s up to us – all of us — to develop a vision beyond 2020 that is brighter and better for everyone.
Stay safe everyone and make the absolute best of this holiday season.
To stay up to date on these and other Logistics technology topics subscribe to our blog @ http://www.Land-Link.com/blog.
Land Link Traffic Systems