While COVID-19 is an unprecedented global health emergency in 2020, its impacts—which range from increased supply costs to inventory shortages to production slowdowns and beyond—are nothing new for many supply chain leaders. Successful supply chain organizations have learned important lessons from previous disruptions and have built supply chains resilient enough to weather the storm, giving them the ability to find opportunity and competitive advantage in the midst of crisis. Far too many organizations, however, were left unprepared for the pandemic of 2020 and are now struggling to catch up.
This article summarizes an April 2020 webinar in which Marisa Brown (senior principal research lead, supply chain management at APQC) hosted Steve Banker (vice president, supply chain management at ARC Advisory Group) for a conversation about what a resilient supply chain looks like, the current state of supply chain preparedness, and the consequences of failing to prepare for disruption. For Brown and Banker, best-practice supplier relationship management and proactive risk monitoring are critical to an organization’s ability to build a supply chain that is strong and able to respond quickly to disruption.