The International Project Manager Suggests:

Why Supply Chains Matter

Lately we hear that factories are paralyzed due to lack of supply of microprocessors or various raw materials. We hear about how critical it is to properly manage your “Supply Chain”: “Supply chains represents the entire network that enables the delivery of products or services from raw materials to end customers” (source ). A supply chain therefore becomes international when it involves foreign suppliers and clients.

This news also shows a great dependence of companies on certain suppliers and even critical exposure. To avoid this or to address the risk of supplier failure, companies must anticipate and establish relationships with domestic or foreign partners before the need arises in order to activate the necessary orders as quickly as possible.

  • When signing a new contract, there may be a need for new products or new raw materials. It is important to guarantee the supply of its products before signing the contract. If these products are not available on the domestic market, it is therefore necessary in this case to initiate a search for specific suppliers who meet the quality criteria requested. For this, a person or a dedicated team is needed to juggle the various purchasing and import procedures and manage cultural aspects in order to complete this procurement mission. This new international contract can have direct consequences on the internal supply chain. Such as production processes which can be revised to meet the quality needs specific to your customers' countries.

  • Once the order has left the company, it is imperative to keep control by relying on a supplier of an integrated and adapted logistics solution (transport, administration, customs clearance) so that the delivery takes place under the best conditions according to the planned schedules. It is obviously necessary to limit the interruptions of load (change of type of transport) and to limit the static periods. A good command of customs clearance procedures is essential in order to limit the periods of customs storage. These can quickly turn out to be expensive and not always suitable due to exposure to bad weather (rain, sun), or the lack of electrical current for refrigerated containers.

Managing your the supply chain properly by limiting supply risks (by having several domestic or international suppliers in place) as well as international logistics is definitely a competitive advantage.

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