What to consider when building a robust supply chain

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Having a resilient supply chain is fundamental to a successful business, especially in the context of our current economic crisis. Start-ups developing their supply chains should be mindful of future crises and make sure their processes are robust. To build a resilient supply chain, businesses need to focus on the fundamentals – people, processes and technology.

People
Establishing a crisis management team is an effective way to ensure your business processes operate smoothly during chaotic times. A crisis management team will work cross-functionally across business operations and coordinate between departments to build an adequate response strategy.

To make sure a crisis management team is purposeful, they must have the necessary communication technology to gain insight into business teams and operations and ensure transparency between them. During regular business schedules, a crisis management team can also run business continuity drills so that staff members are prepared for disruptions and alternative working conditions, such as working from home.

Process
Online and digitised processes have proven to be most effective in continuing usual business operations during times of crisis. Using digitised operations such as e-signatures, e-invoicing and other online data and information sharing techniques, is a worthy investment for long-term business efficiency. Having real-time communications through digitised operations will also lead to quicker decision-making and increased networking between businesses and clients.

Technology
Similar to having digitised processes, take advantage of the available technology and set up a central incident management system. In a time when employees are working from home and employees are disconnected due to separate chatting platforms, having a central system will mean keeping employees accountable to their actions within the supply chain context. This “single source of truth” will not only streamline problem-solving, but it will also enable internal problems to be discovered faster. It also means employees will remain up to date with business operations and faster decision-making as a result of communal data access.

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