As long as there have been supply chains there have been supply chain disruptions. However, the COVID-19 pandemic exposed just how delicate supply chains can be.
No longer are disruptions primarily caused by problems at the source—an issue with the mining of a particular raw material, for example. Businesses today are painfully aware that supply chains can be halted by human factors, as well.
For instance, if a company that transports components cannot find drivers for its trucks because everyone is sick, those parts sit in a warehouse or on a loading dock until the drivers can recuperate. All the while, the company needing those parts is scrambling to deal with the delay and the possibility of missing deadlines and failing to meet commitments.
Are the delays and the scrambling inevitable? No, not necessarily. Some suppliers and service providers take steps to insulate themselves from supply chain disruptions.
Self-Reliance Is the Key
It is true that “no company is an island,” so to speak. All businesses rely on others to some degree. But the more self-reliant a company is, the less it will be impacted when supply disruptions occur.
To that end, Armoloy takes important steps to minimize the risk of supply-chain-related delays. This includes:
- Performing all work in-house. Some coatings providers rely on subcontractors to complete parts of the coating process. That means that items have to be shipped to and returned from some other location—often in another country. That greatly increases the chances that outside forces will affect a production schedule. At Armoloy, once items are received, they remain on-site until the coating work is completed. During the worst of the COVID-related supply chain issues, Armoloy’s team was able to keep working and fulfilling orders.
- Maintaining strong supplier relationships. In some instances, suppliers must decide which of their customers will have access to a dwindling supply. Companies like Armoloy that prove to be good business partners tend to be at the top of the list.
- Identifying suppliers with a similar focus on self-sufficiency. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Companies like Armoloy that leverage suppliers that have solid operations and good contingency plans—instead of those that simply have the lowest prices—are rewarded for that choice when supply chain issues arise.
Being proactive about preventing supply chain disruptions requires time and effort. But it is an investment that pays ongoing dividends for Armoloy and its customers.
Additional Benefits of Working With Self-Reliant Business Partners
Working with a coatings provider that is insulated from supply chain issues helps ensure that a business will continue to receive the coated items it needs. But there are other benefits, as well. For example, companies can enjoy a competitive advantage as a result of:
- Quick turnaround. When a business has an urgent need for coated parts, a provider like Armoloy that does not have to ship items to a subcontractor and then get them back can be far more responsive than providers that do not complete all their work in-house.
- Better quality control. Along with completing projects on-site, Armoloy also does all of its own quality control. As a result, customers can be assured that parts meet the highest quality standards instead of hoping that all of the subcontractors involved are doing thorough inspections.
- Full compliance with environmental standards. End-users of coated tools and equipment are increasingly concerned about how those assets were produced. If they work with a self-reliant company like Armoloy, designers and manufacturers can point to an exemplary and documented record of environmental safety rather than trying—frequently in vain—to obtain information on subcontractors.
- Audit readiness. Coatings companies face both scheduled and random scrutiny from entities such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). Providers who do all their work in-house have no trouble providing requested reports and documentation, which ensures their operations will not be halted due to regulatory issues.
Supply Chain Disruption: Less of a Risk With the Right Coatings Company
In today’s highly connected world, supply chain disruption is an ongoing risk. But by working with the right coatings company, businesses can minimize the risk that their operations—and their customers—will be adversely affected by events outside their control.