Insights 11th September 2020

Why cyber recovery, infrastructure and culture must be part of your IT supply chain post-COVID-19

The global crisis has brought many business’ processes into question. It’s both exposed faltering services as well as shining a light on those with successful, streamlined operations – all at the same time. As organisations move swiftly towards becoming the ‘modern-day’ enterprises they were striving to pre-pandemic, firms are now being challenged with the prospect of either pivoting their propositions or greatly altering their supply chain provision, in order to make up for the lost time.

As organisations move swiftly towards becoming the ‘modern-day’ enterprises they were striving to pre-pandemic, firms are now being challenged with the prospect of either pivoting their propositions or greatly altering their supply chain provision, in order to make up for the lost time.

A previous Industry Talk piece – detailing the advantages of handing over the management of the supply chain to IT specialists – could provide a solution for many enterprises as they look to reignite their deliveries during a global crisis. And, with many physical premises only just beginning to reopen, it’s clear why organisations are exploring online services that can help to tackle the backlog, or reduction, in orders – and fast.

The stark reality is that the virus has made a meteoric difference in how businesses can now trade. Before the outbreak, several firms will have had physical operations in place to transfer goods – particularly overseas. For those companies, they’re having to quickly adapt to a ‘new way of working’, whereas, for others with online processes in place, the task may have been a little easier.

However, across the board, the supply chain has been greatly affected since March 2020. There’s been a huge reduction in volume as countries entered lockdown and subsequently put income-heavy projects on hold. And, with digitalisation already considered to be the solution for many enterprises, it’s perhaps going to be more of ‘the norm’ for delivery services moving forward.

The emphasis is now is how organisations can build a much stronger – and smarter – supply chain that is more robust and able to withstand dramatic market changes. With an ability to shrink and scale the operating model at speed, businesses should be in a far greater position to react and shift quickly.

What’s critical for the IT supply chain’s next steps?

While nothing is ever certain, the response from the industry suggests that several enterprises are now more willing than ever to streamline and speed up transformational change, in order to add real business value.

Many firms may have previously been risk-adverse and therefore endured long and arduous procurement processes, however, this has been drastically shortened in terms of engagement length. Companies are keen to see benefits and return on investment quickly – knowing that such changes don’t necessarily take as much time as previously thought.

It’s all about having a clear and detailed roadmap that’s outlined from the beginning. Leaders must be in a position to communicate where the firm is, address any pain-points and underline where it wants to get to. Achieving this should go a long way towards ensuring any organisation’s supply chain strategy is aligned to the business requirement – and therefore logical decisions can be made to fast-track processes.

And don’t forget the trio of elements that must always be present

Of course, to deliver a true business outcome, enterprises must always ensure that online security remains a premium focus, alongside a strong infrastructure, and a motivated team at the heart of it all.

These three factors might not have originally been at the top of a company’s ‘wish-list’ – with regards to enhancing the existing IT supply chain – however, they’re extremely vital when embarking on a ‘post-COVID world’.

Without a strong network of people, processes, and technology when finding solutions to reinvigorate the supply chain, projects can often come to a grinding halt, which can prove to be catastrophic for business recovery.

Therefore, a steely focus on these three elements should enable firms to provide a valuable, trusted, and secure service that doesn’t slow projects down – and result in late payments or damage the company’s reputation. In turn, these key priorities should build greater customer loyalty and deliver true competitive advantage.

This article first appeared in IT in Supply Chain, click here to read.

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