While firms around the world have adjusted their late-stage pandemic strategies, there are new non-COVID disruptions and exogenous risks impacting global supply chains every day.
Just this week, look no further than one of the most vital shipping lanes to see how a single vessel can—in an instant—bring gridlock to global waterways, affect fulfillment and forecasting, and strain business relationships everywhere.
For teams responsible for mitigating these risks and managing complex global supply chains (procurement, sourcing, finance, compliance), the work (pandemic or not) marches on—and they will need to meaningfully collaborate with each other and with their suppliers, through data-based, objective decision-making—more than ever before.
Collaboration, actionable information, and objective decision-making were also key themes at ReAlign 2021—our all-virtual client summit built for the pandemic era (and beyond). The week-long event took place in mid-February and featured unique perspectives from preeminent supplier and third-party risk officers. Notably, the interactive programming was offered to clients, ecosystem partners, and colleagues—over three live webinars and ten topic-focused roundtables.
Here are some key (postscript) highlights—
This Wasn’t The First Pandemic and It Won’t Be The Last
Adverse events can happen at any time, and for ReAlign’s panel titled “Stepping Up: Healthcare Supply Chains Responding to COVID-19," previous outbreaks (SARS, Ebola et al) provided smaller rubrics for a response—nevertheless, last year fundamentally changed risk management in healthcare [watch the full discussion here]. Panelists observed:
- Identifying supplier financial stress presents opportunities to strengthen existing relationships
- Both domestic reshoring and international supplier resourcing will challenge traditional chain make-ups
- Domestic and international lockdowns will continue to create ripple effects
Assessing Supplier Financial Health Is Now a Feature of Modern Business
For Sajid Kunnummal, CPO at Navistar, and Sue Spence, CPO at FedEx Services, data and the implementation of advanced analytics are key. But only if they're usable. Here are some takeaways from the closed-door “Views from the Top: CPO Perspectives on 2021 and Beyond” discussion, led by RapidRatings Chairman & CEO, James H. Gellert:
- Growth is best—together—as success is dependent on collaboration between partners
- Suppliers are also Buyers, and vice-versa
- Diversity initiatives are in view, competitive, and value-driven
And “Risk” Needs to Be Part of Every Discussion
During a conversation between Jarrod Shandley, RapidRatings’ Co-Head of Product, and Nola Hardaway, Global Sourcing Operations Manager at GE Power, they noted that internal communication and accountability are paramount to successful risk management programs [watch the full discussion here]:
- Senior buy-in is critical at all stages
- Segment and triage your supplier universe to strengthen focus and develop actionable workflows
- Clarity is everything when it comes to internal expectations and external guidance