This IDC Manufacturing Insights Perspective looks at disruption in the manufacturing supply chain and how manufacturers can leverage modern technology to mitigate the risk of supply chain disruption. Disruption in the supply chain is a fact of life. There exists an abundance of unpredictable external forces working against the process of making and moving product throughout the supply chain. At times, these forces become extreme enough to have an impact on an organization's ability to move materials and significantly disrupt supply chain execution. While some degree of disruption is unavoidable, regardless of how well an organization prepares, leading supply chains are designed for agility and responsiveness capable of reducing the impact of disruption when it occurs.In many of our discussions with manufacturers (and it applies for other industries as well), we often talk about the four Ws. It requires a bit of spelling "sleight of hand," but essentially it's weather, war, workers, and "w"egulation, with each a proxy for the broader category:Weather reflects the various climate or resource-related disruptions that we have seen become more frequent in recent years.War reflects the macro social-economic issues that can disrupt the supply chain, including things like conflict — minerals.Workers reflects the labor and people component of the supply chain, including labor costs and knowledge."W"egulation, the convenient spelling aside, reflects the increasingly complex and often delay-inducing nature of global commerce and often fluctuating individual country regulations.
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