In terms of conducting business regularly, 2020 has been a transformative year for numerous industries. While shipping and handling remain mostly unaffected by COVID-19 due to their lack of direct human contact, proper supply chain management remains a priority. According to Finances Online, 65% of executives in supply chain sectors make drastic changes in the supply sector. Likewise, 57% of companies said that adequate supply management gives them a competitive edge on the market.
This is what makes writing a supply chain policy important regardless of the scale at which you import/export goods or services. While a supply chain policy might seem like a standard document to write, there are several factors to consider before doing so. Let’s take a look at how you can prepare before writing a supply chain policy for your company and the benefits of doing so.
1. Conduct an Internal Supply Chain Audit
The main purpose of a supply chain policy is to establish a sustainable and user-friendly supply workflow, which can then be standardized company-wide. It’s important to consider the purpose of your supply chain policy before writing such a document.
Thus, it’s good practice to conduct an internal audit of your current supply chain pipeline. Speak to your supply managers, transport, and storage executives about the pros and cons of current supply chain management. Find the most damaging bottlenecks and the most beneficial traits of your current system to know what to address in the new supply chain policy.
2. Assemble an Approval Committee
The second factor to consider before writing a supply chain policy is the committee in charge of its approval. You should assemble a team of executives with experience in your company’s supply management and have their roles approved by the company’s board or CEO.
This can streamline the feedback and approval process of your supply chain policy writing in order to get the document done faster. It will also standardize its writing process and let you know who to approach for comments, concerns, or additions to the policy quickly.
3. What are the Supply Chain Policy Expectations?
Different companies will have different expectations from their supply chain policies based on the industry they operate in. A company which exports frozen foods to surrounding states will have different needs from the supply policy than a business with Amazon centric online sales.
As such, you should carefully consider the existing bottlenecks within your supply management structure and try to address them in the new policy. Some of the areas you should consider addressing with your supply chain policy writing include:
- Standardization of supply chain codes and regulations
- Storage and handling of goods within your warehouses
- State and international shipping guidelines
- Policies against staff harassment or discrimination
- Subsequent update possibility based on changes in the industry
4. Take Note of Existing Supply Chain Risks
While we’ve addressed supply chain risks briefly, it’s important to note their presence in the new supply chain policy for the sake of transparency. Whether it is logistics, HR, or shipping, potential risks can cause issues for your company in regards to its revenue generation and industry reputation. This is especially important as we move into a COVID-19 affected landscape where supply management trends are bound to shift constantly.
Estelle Liotard, Senior Writer and Editor, said that: “Businesses in any industry, cloud-based or retail, face risks on a daily basis. You can offer as standard as assistance on how to write a dissertation discussion and still face tangible risks to your company’s wellbeing. Writing policies which can help alleviate some of those risks can significantly improve your business’ likelihood of successful ongoing growth.”
5. Who Will Be in Charge of Implementation?
The last thing worth noting in regards to supply chain policy writing preparation is the policy’s implementation going forward. Who will be in charge of distributing it and letting your staff know how to use it properly for supply management duties?
Depending on the scale of your business, the same committee in charge of assessing the policy’s writing can also implement its practical use. After all, this team is already familiar with the ins and outs of the policy and can attest to its viability. Alternatively, individual department managers and team leaders can read and subsequently pass on the policy to their staff members. Whichever you choose, make sure that it’s clear who is in charge of implementing the newly-written supply chain policy to ensure its practical day-to-day application.
Why Writing a Supply Chain Policy Matters for your Business
Now that we’ve tackled the things you should pay close attention to in regards to writing a new supply chain policy, what are its benefits? Supply management is a versatile department present within every company, be it centered on shipping or in need of a steady flow of office supplies. As such, it should be undisrupted and sustainable throughout the year, allowing staff to operate at peak efficiency. Writing a supply chain policy matters for several practical reasons, including:
- Higher agility of supply chain management
- Better efficiency of handling existing supply
- Lowered margin for error or mishandling of supply
- Increased staff productivity and accountability
- Room for further refinement of supply chain policies
Writing a supply chain policy is only the beginning of the road. Once it’s written, you should take full advantage of its existence within your business’ pipeline. Consult your staff, managers, and executives on the policy’s long-term viability and their thoughts on future updates. Continue to monitor its effects on your staff’s moment-to-moment workflow, and you will be able to utilize the supply chain policy more easily.
About the Author:
Dorian Martin is a professional writer and freelance blogger with years of experience covering diverse topics. He mainly focuses on giving actionable tips to his readers who need help achieving a professional or personal goal. He currently works as an editor at an academic writing service EssaySupply.com and loves every second of it.