Effective supply chain management has always been critical in manufacturing. On average, more than half of a manufacturer’s total spending occurs in the supply chain, making it an ideal target for reducing costs and mitigating risk. However, the bottlenecks that have emerged from the pandemic have dramatically increased the importance of supply chain management. Delayed materials can wreak havoc downstream by disrupting schedules, creating work stoppages and ultimately causing missed shipments to customers. Pandemics and other threats can reduce critical manufacturing capacity and the availability and integrity of critical goods, products, and services. Resilient American supply chains will revitalize and rebuild domestic manufacturing capacity, maintain America’s competitive edge in research and development, and create well-paying jobs.
The MEP National Network’s supply chain management services can help you improve the performance of your supply chain and manage the impact of disruptions. While each MEP Center customizes its services to the needs of local companies, here are some examples of support available:
MEP Center experts can help you map and assess your supply chain to identify sources of risk and develop risk management plans, such as identifying secondary or alternative suppliers as well as increasing safety stock. Our supply chain guide, written by Network experts, gives you a more strategic approach to managing supply chain risk.
The national Supplier Scouting service can assist in identifying domestic suppliers with the capabilities you need, in some cases allowing you to reshore production, resulting in a shorter supply chain and reduced uncertainty. Learn more about the Network’s reshoring efforts with the Reshoring and the Pandemic: Bringing Manufacturing Back to America infographic.
MEP Centers’ deep expertise in lean, process improvement and quality systems can be applied across tiers in your supply chain. Experts work with companies and their supply chains to:
MEP Center experts can also assist in developing supplier metrics or scorecards, which are critical to measuring performance, driving improvements, and determining which suppliers to reward with continuing or increased business.
MEP Centers and their partners have expertise in overall procurement and supply chain management strategy, helping companies consider factors, such as supplier segmentation (e.g. developing different strategies for most important components vs non-critical maintenance, repair and operations items). Additional considerations include supplier evaluation and selection approaches, total cost of ownership (TCO), determining the number of suppliers required for various types of components, and establishing strategic supplier relationships.
Training on how to incorporate total cost of ownership into procurement and supply chain management is also available. This approach will give you a more complete perspective on the cost of sourced material. When you calculate TCO, you include overhead expenses, such as the cost of managing overseas suppliers, the balance sheet (e.g. having higher inventory costs), risks including lost sales and poor customer experience, and other external and internal business considerations. It is a more integrated view that takes into account freight, tariffs and lead time.
We had been searching for reliable, high quality vendors for machined and formed components for the products that we build. FloridaMakes offered services that included making connections to qualified local vendors to fulfill our needs. The services provided are a win-win for Northwest Florida businesses in that it helps our company and our vendors build revenue and create jobs.
— Mike Petkauskos, Director of Engineering, Honeycomb Aircraft Repair, LLC
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For more information or assistance with your supply chain, please contact your local MEP Center.
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