Report: Canadian companies need improved supply chain management

canada supply chain

A recent Leger Marketing survey with software industry backing found a number of challenges facing Canadian companies establishing global supply chains. The report found that, while companies around the world are taking advantage of the global business ecosystem, too many firms in Canada have limited their view to their own nation. Modern supply chain management tactics and solutions can globalize procedures and bring businesses into new competitive territory.

Report shows flaws

The Leger survey found that Canadian companies are very focused on local productivity and tactics rather than strategies. This limits the scope of improvement that companies can implement, as the nature of supply procedures has become increasingly global. While the No. 1 concern with worldwide supply chain organizations is competition in the global marketplace, it was not even in the top 10 priorities among Canadian decision-makers. A limited view that can harm businesses' ability to adapt.

The report also discovered that a local focus can leave companies weak and susceptible to trouble in one geographic area. Focus on one region can cripple a company's production in case of a natural disaster or other disruptive event. Global chains are more adaptable and, with strong redundancy, able to continue production in times of disruption. The nature of modern supply chain management strategies and managed file transfer systems means global near-instant contact is possible.

"Given the increasing interconnectedness of the global supply chain, a single, local event can have dramatic impact on how we do business," said Gary D'Andrea, the CIO of the report's sponsoring company. "Companies need to work more closely with their supply chain and procurement partners to help reduce their risk profile."

Global benefits

According to Supply Chain Digital, there are many opportunities to decrease risk in global supply chain management once companies learn to look beyond their own borders. These include forging very strong relationships between suppliers and manufacturers, even when those companies are of vastly different size or reputation. According to the source, the global economy is difficult to survive without strong partnerships, meaning companies that offer support to their smaller trading partners have a special advantage.

The source also advocated close and automated B2B integration as a visibility and risk control strategy. Once companies begin to think of the global economy as a united playing field and frame their competition as against all businesses worldwide, they can start developing strategies to take best advantage of the state of things.