How to Get Supply Chain Management Right During Crisis

June 20, 2022
By David PefferJune 20, 2022

woman in warehouse using laptop for supply chain management

The impact of COVID-19 on supply chains across the planet has been well documented. Fifty or so years ago, this would not have been a significant problem as companies tended to have fairly localized supply chains. Only major manufacturing, retail, or mining concerns would have an extended supply chain footprint. 

These days, even small companies have extended supply chains, especially given that most manufacturing has gone overseas. While this has led to increased efficiency and lower prices, it also means that any global interruptions to the supply chain are felt right down to the corner shop. For this reason, understanding supply chain management in times of crisis is something all business owners need to know.

Why Supply Chains Matter

A business cannot run if it has nothing to sell or can't get products to its customers. This means that, at the very least, supply chains are the lifeblood of most business models. The COVID-19 pandemic has also driven many consumers to mostly online purchases. This means that business owners have to think about how they get raw materials and how to get finished products to their consumers. Making this process as efficient as possible also directly affects your business. Pilferage, spoilage, and related supply chain problems can devastate your bottom line. 

Supply Chain Management in a Crisis

 There are several factors that have caused the current crisis. These include:

  • Labor shortages due to social distancing and other COVID-19 restrictions. With many employees either working at home or working reduced shifts, less is getting done, thus leading to these problems.
  • Workplace safety regulations that slow down operations. Many organizations had to close down to set up hand-washing stations, testing stations, etc. This, in turn, creates a bottleneck.
  • Transportation issues due to backed-up ports, airports, and other transport hubs caused by a surge in orders from companies as well as from consumers. Since all these use the same transport hubs, the surge has slowed down operations.
  • Spike in consumer demand caused by the opening up of government restrictions, income from stimulus funds, etc.

 All these factors have led to a need to manage supply chains better. Here are some ways to get supply chain management right during these times of uncertainty.

Getting Supply Chain Management Right

There are many ways to do this. The first of these is to have a value stream map, which allows you to understand what everyone at each point on the chain requires to be successful. Value Stream Maps are used to optimize the processes, making them as efficient as possible. Using data to analyze and predict the future can help anticipate the future. Getting the right skill sets, either through training or outsourcing, will help get supply chain management right. Finally, having safety stocks in place can help keep your business going even when unexpected interruptions hit.

How MetaExperts Can Help

One of the critical aspects of getting supply chain management right in a crisis is having a suitable skill set. Fortunately, MetaExperts can help. We can match your biggest operational challenge to contract-to-hire or interim experts to help you get the breakthrough you need. In this context, we can help you overcome any supply chain crisis you face. Our experts can also put in place long-term systems that will make the next supply chain crisis much easier to handle. We have more than 900 vetted experts who can be deployed at short notice to help you with any significant challenge that you are facing. Hire a MetaExpert to 'Get It Done today!'

About David Peffer

David Peffer is a Financial and Operations Executive and Business Strategy Consultant with profit-focused experience in finance and operations. David is skilled in creative financial leadership of public and private multi-divisional global manufacturing businesses, ranging in size from Fortune 100s to pre-IPO startups. Products/services include food: industrial, food service and consumer, chemicals, textiles, distribution, packaging, and light construction equipment.

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