Operations and supply chain: Maintain business continuity through your supply chain

Common challenges and worries

  • Understanding supply availability and constraints at all tiers of the supply chain and having a method to maintain this data as situations evolve.

  • Identifying specific supply constraint remediation levers that are either immediately available or available in the shorter term and validating them (e.g., enabling alternate suppliers, securing overtime or expedited freight).

  • Converting the risk-adjusted supply situation into estimates of revenue deferral and revenue loss, along with understanding any one-time costs.

  • Communicating with key supply chain stakeholders multiple times a week as the virus and policies on quarantine, etc., continue to rapidly evolve.

  • Working with sales to shape demand to available supply and to allocate inventory to top customers and the most profitable markets.

  • Reassessing pending new-product introductions: where built and sold.

  • Making informed trade-offs for more expensive remediations, such as approving supplier or bill-of-material changes that might take lead time to deploy.

  • Thinking through more creative ways to improve supply assurance, such as helping finance supplier inventory exposure where capitalization is thin.

Suggested next steps

  • Stand up a situation room where supply risk and mitigations can be coordinated with other risk management teams. 

  • Build a tiered factual base of supply: what's available and constrained, and set the mechanism to regularly update the data.

  • Set clear roles and accountabilities, as well as closed-loop communication protocols, for actions that could impact revenue, cost of revenue, customer satisfaction and other essential areas.

  • Develop expected-case and worst-case scenarios designed to help ensure that supply aligns to demand—and there are plans for each.

How we’ve helped others

  • Assess where supply risk exists with categorization into potential for revenue deferral versus loss.

  • Identify supply remediation options and analyze the timing of impact and/or costs for levers like rerouted freight.

  • Establish processes to enable sales-driven actions within the supply chain where supply is constrained: allocations and demand shaping.

  • Determine gaps and opportunities in supply chain risk-modeling tools, and determine how to better consider external factors, such as disease, natural disasters, labour strikes, shifts in trade policies and more.

You are not alone. We are here to help.

  • Business continuity planning
  • Margin impact/revenue displacement
  • Understand cost increases: overtime, expedited freight, premiums
  • Inventory and raw material buy-ahead strategies
  • Supply chain resilience and network agility
  • Supply chain intelligence, visibility and planning tools, including machine learning
  • Landed cost tools and strategies
  • Tariff assessments and mitigation for changing supply chains

Contact us

Michelle Gronning

Michelle Gronning

Strategic Capabilities Leader, Consulting Leadership Group, PwC Canada

Tel: +1 416 814 5780