There is no doubt that 2020 has been yet another year of change, innovation, and growth for the supply chain industry. The COVID-19 pandemic has lasted longer than anyone could have imagined only six months ago. As we begin to look ahead to 2021, it is undoubtedly shaping how organizations and professionals alike are planning for the year ahead. Savvy professionals reflect on learnings from the past to prepare for events in the future, and 2020 certainly provided opportunities for learning and improvement.
Remember the toilet paper shortage? Although the shortages had nothing to do with demand planning or inventory management and everything to do with consumer behavior, the much-publicized toilet paper shortage managed to do a couple things:
What is one major lesson I take away from the past year? Well, that supply chain professionals know they need to be ready for the unexpected, to prepare for scenarios that are unlikely, and to respond with agility and flexibility to ensure our customers are served, and yes, at the lowest possible landed cost.
As we look to 2021, first pause and recognize what your supply chains and the magnificent people who lead them have accomplished this year. It might also make sense to sit down and highlight what you learned over the past year. Were there unique opportunities and ways of serving customers, born out of necessity this past year, that can now be employed and leveraged? I’ll bet the creativity of your supply chain professionals resulted in innovations as a response to what was bestowed upon them in 2020. Maybe, just maybe, you created a new way of doing business.
I encourage you to look back at the year, take the good things from it, and look forward to a wonderful future. Remember, people are the most important aspect in any supply chain. This is also a wonderful opportunity to connect with your supply chain peers to collaborate and work together to shape the future of the supply chain industry. At CSCMP, we offer many resources and events to help connect the best and brightest. If you haven’t already, visit cscmp.org to see how we can help you and your organization.