As business owners, we all need to plan for the future with the global supply chain challenges in mind.
The global supply chain is a mess.
That’s no secret. We’ve heard that said often on the AAPEX/SEMA convention floor this year, as well as at the NAFA I&E.
While some products (like microchips) are impossible to get, others are available, but take months to get to their intended destination.
I recently heard a business analyst comment on how the world is changing its supplier philosophy.
For decades, the goal was to have goods arrive at a factory, for example, “Just in time.” In other words, just when the old stock was running out, and the new shipment was needed.
Those days are now gone, and the advice we’re hearing from some industry experts is to order what we need (fleet vehicles come to mind) as soon as they’re available… and in some cases to “over order” just in case.
That’s a thought you’ll see expressed from one of our industry experts interviewed for the upfitting article on page 22 of this issue of Autosphere Mag.
So essentially, we’re moving from “Just in time” to “Just in case.”
The advice seems to be, “Whatever you need to run your business—stock up on it, just in case supply chain issues continue and you won’t be able to buy what you need in the weeks and months to come.”
I like the way Simon Therrien, President of the Quebec Chapter of NAFA, expressed this thought in his column in the French version of Autosphere Mag.
He said: “We have entered a tumultuous period where we have to review the way we plan our purchases, as well as the relationships we have with our suppliers.”
Wise words indeed!
We’ve all heard the expression “long-haul COVID,” which refers to people who suffer COVID-19 symptoms long after they no longer have the disease. Our supply chain issues are the economic version of long-haul COVID.
Although Canada is getting back to work, and businesses are opening up again, we’re going to have to deal with the fallout of COVID-19 (especially the supply chain issues) for a while still.
One of the experts you’ll hear from in this issue of Autosphere Mag suggests that vehicle shortages might even last into 2023.
I hope they’re wrong.
In the meantime, as business leaders, we need to plan for the future with a “Just in Case” approach.
We’ve made it so far, and the future is looking better, but we need to strategize and plan accordingly as we wait for supply to catch up with demand.