Avoiding Supply Chain Disasters
Last year, Supply Chain Digest documented The 11 Greatest Supply Chain Disasters of all time which contained a number of lessons on what not to do if you want a successful supply chain. Since it's probably been a while since you scanned it, now would be a good time for a brief review. The lessons therein are valuable.
- Don't rely on unproven / untested technology or aggressive automation.
The rate of technological advancement these days is rapid, but that's not a guarantee the systems will be ready when you need them.
(Foxmeyer, GM, WebVan, Adidas, Denver Airport)
- Don't upgrade all your core systems at once.
Integration is usually more involved and time consuming than you think. The big-bang approach doesn't work.
(Foxmeyer, Hershey, Nike)
- Don't overestimate your capabilities.
A sure way to lose customers is to over-promise and under-deliver - especially if the short-fall is significant.
(Toys R Us.com)
- Don't forget the basics of good demand planning!
Forecast, read signals, and repeat.
- Don't sacrifice quality for perceived lower costs.
Lower costs don't always exist, especially if your costs are low and quality best-in-class, relatively speaking.
- Don't count on an unlimited budget.
Capital is always limited.