The Supply Chain is Broken. Now What?

Before COVID-19, few people gave much thought to the global supply chain. As long as new cars and toys and electronics kept coming, consumers were happy, and the supply chain remained invisible.

But all that’s changed. Now, even the average Joe is aware of something manufacturers have known for years: the global supply chain is vulnerable. Whether it’s a natural disaster, political dispute, or transportation snag, all it takes is one disruption to delay shipments and impact production. Add in a global pandemic and you have disruptions of epic proportions.

Unprecedented disruptions

We’ve all seen the recent news stories. After traveling thousands of miles, container ships now wait offshore for weeks, or even months, because of a record backlog at American ports. There simply aren’t enough people to unload shipped goods, store these goods in warehouses, send the goods through customs, and then load them onto trucks.

Of course, once the goods are finally ready for a truck there’s another problem: there aren’t enough drivers to transport everything. This backlog and the resulting shortages are a huge problem the government is trying to fix. But for now, manufacturers like you face a myriad of challenges.

The effects of a broken supply chain

First, there’s the obvious: if you can’t reliably send and receive goods through the supply chain, you lose money, and your reputation suffers.

Supply chain disruptions also spawn costly inefficiencies. When a material or supply is delayed, your employees can’t properly do their jobs and that leads to downtime. When the goods finally do show up, you have the costly task of catching up. This leads to overtime, expediated shipping, and other burdensome expenses.

You may also fall into the trap of over-ordering when supplies are scarce, and this practice comes with its own costs and complications.

Being prepared and making smart, strategic decisions is the best approach in a time of disruption. But how can you be prepared when you don’t know where your shipment is or when it will arrive at its final destination? How can anyone prepare at a time like this?

A solution to make it easier

With MCA Connect’s container tracking solution, manufacturers like you can use intelligent automation to track shipments from supplier to end customer. You also have the option to change course along the way in near real time, including holding or expediting shipments due to unexpected changes. The solution integrates into your ERP system, enabling you to better manage your transportation process and make better, and quicker, decisions.

While we can’t prevent supply chain disruptions or all the pain they cause, we can help you better navigate the challenges they bring. To learn more about our container tracking solution, click here or watch the demo video below.

Author: Doug Bulla, Senior Vice President, Solution Development

300x300-2