Is Your Supply Chain Overrated?

May 13, 2020


How good is your company’s supply chain?

That’s a question that we addressed on a recent webinar we created for CEOs and presidents to address the impact the coronavirus is having and will continue to have on supply chains for the remainder of the year and into 2021. We had some outstanding resources addressing important issues.
I asked a question that opened some eyes to the fact that many C-Level executives are overrating their company's supply chain capabilities. This question was: How would you rate your company's supply chain capabilities on a five-point scale, with five being "world-class" and one representing "third world issues"? A significant majority of the C-Level executives rate their supply chain as a three, which is basically saying, "our supply chain is not great, but it is good enough."

Here's where it gets interesting. When we ask these executives to take a short supply chain quiz that quantifies in greater detail where they land on the supply chain capability spectrum, their actual score clearly demonstrates that their initial estimate grossly overrates their company's actual supply chain capabilities—even when they think they're just about average!

This was further highlighted on our webinar when one of our resources, MIT Professor David Simchi-Levi, shared the results of his recent survey where hundreds of companies were measured on the actual effectiveness of their supply chains. Furthermore, as panelist Harry Moser from the Reshoring Initiative noted, one of the consequences of overrating your company's supply chain capabilities is that a relentless focus on using "low cost" versus "least total cost" suppliers can leave your supply chains vulnerable and exposed.

So here is an important question for you: Are you overrating your company's supply chain capabilities? To help you answer this question, we'd strongly recommend taking our supply chain survey. It's a twenty question assessment we’ve created for you and your team.

If you really want to know what’s happening in your supply chain, may we make another recommendation: Share this survey with any of your associates whose decisions in the sales, procurement, and operations areas of your company impact your supply chain. One of the things that we learned from the Breaking Down the Silos webinar series with our friends from CSCMP and NASSTRAC, is that it’s more important than ever to have everyone get on the same page when it comes to improving your company's supply chain capabilities.

After you take this assessment, if you identify areas where improvement is needed and you're wondering about next steps, we encourage you to get in touch with us about our rapid assessment process. It’s about where you could be in the future to better serve your customers and improve your profitability. It also provides an understanding of your company's current position and what your next steps should be.