Getting the Supply You Need

Earlier this year our dishwasher stopped working. It took us five months to get a replacement. The reason, supply chain disruptions. It is a reality we are all dealing with in today’s marketplace. And for those of us in the hardwood industry we are no different.

gettingthesupplyyouneedWith businesses still recovering from the pandemic and the in balance of global trade disruptions in supply chains is a large concern for many manufacturers and suppliers in the hardwood lumber industry.

For us at American Lumber, we understand the importance of a strong supply chain and related logistics required to do business today. It is a part of our commitment to customers that we do all we can to ensure continuity and to immediately address any problems that come up with respect to delivering the high-quality hardwood lumber our customers need when they need it.

In doing so, here are a few things find help and counsel our customers to consider.

Keep an ample inventory on hand. It’s not always easy to anticipate peaks and valleys in customer demand, but when it comes to guarding against supply chain disruptions, helping our customers stockpile important inventory is often a wise choice. Sometimes it is specific products such as 4/4 Prime Hard Maple, 4/4 FAS White Oak, or 8/4 Prime Walnut, for example.

Maintain a diverse range of suppliers. Savvy business owners understand it’s foolish to rely upon one supplier alone. They leverage the power of the internet and other resources to leverage the expertise of multiple suppliers—local, national, and international—to ensure smooth operations. When pursuing this strategy, be sure to identify:

Conduct a “supply chain stress test.” Businesses should regularly take a close look at potential gaps in their supply chain logistics. To do this, consider running a stress test (under a variety of disruptive factors) to see where weak links might exist. By doing this, IndustryStar says, businesses “identify and eliminate weaknesses found in their current operations in a controlled environment.” This is far preferable to finding yourself in a “live disruption,” which if handled improperly, “could result in catastrophic failure.”

Invest in efficient technology. A further step towards protecting your business centers on investment in efficient inventory management systems. The best technology smoothly integrates customer, sales, and supplier data with your production facilities, warehouses, and sales operations.

Understanding that a disruption in the supply chain can result in lost sales should spur businesses to be proactive in defending against negative situations. By taking precautionary steps, businesses stand a better chance of minimizing damage and recovering more quickly from any serious logistical challenges.

How has your business handle supply chain disruptions? We would love to hear what has worked for you!

Anthony C.
American Lumber
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