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We are living in unprecedented times related to the ongoing spread of the coronavirus and its impact on our day-to-day lives. Individuals, families, businesses, and entire communities have been affected in unparalleled ways. As difficult as the situation has become, it’s critical for business leaders to step forward. In a time of crisis, understanding current and future logistics capacity by mode—and their associated trade-offs—will be even more essential than usual, as will prioritizing logistics needs in required capacity and time sensitivity of product delivery. Actions taken now to mitigate impacts on supply chains can also build resilience against future shocks.
First Things First: Protective Measures
Although information, direction, recommendations, and government-imposed sanctions are changing by the hour, there are several commonsense fundamentals we can encourage all employees to follow to minimize the chance of getting ill and further spreading the virus. Basic protective measures against the coronavirus include:
• Wash your hands frequently for a minimum of 20 seconds
• Maintain social distancing (3 feet minimum)
• Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth
• Practice respiratory hygiene
• Work from home if at all possible
• Avoid large gatherings, particularly those with an international audience
• Rethink your travel plans if traveling by plane
• Stay aware of the infection rates in cities, states, and countries (and avoid them)
• If you have a fever, a cough, and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early
• Follow advice given by your healthcare provider
• Stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19
Insights From the Institute for Supply Management
On March 11, the ISM revealed the first-round results of a survey focused on the impact of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on businesses and the supply chain. Notably, nearly 75% of companies report supply chain disruptions in some capacity due to coronavirus-related transportation restrictions, while more than 80% believe that their organization will experience some impact because of COVID-19 disruptions. Of those, one in six (16%) companies report adjusting revenue targets downward an average of 5.6% due to the coronavirus.
Take a Deep Breath: Then Review Your Core Business Processes
The stock market is extremely uncertain right now, with traders selling based on fear instead of sound strategy. This is also having a direct impact on the global economy and will for the foreseeable future. However, this slow-down in demand can also be seen as an opportunity to examine and take necessary operating safeguards within your supply chain and quality management systems.
A gallon of gas in our neighborhood today is below $1.85/gal. Even if it continues to go down, we all know at some juncture in the not too distant future, we will have the privilege of paying close to $3.00/gal again. While the prices of some products like gas are falling, others may be rising and difficult to procure amid supplier shutdowns and part allocations. Now is the time to look at your business in areas that may not have received the amount focus and/or attention that you, as a leader, know are needed for long-term success within the markets you serve.
To read this entire article, which appeared in the April 2020 issue of PCB007 Magazine, click here.