The hi-tech or high technology industry has always been at the forefront of agile and flexible supply chain solutions. Owing to the various supply chain supply-demand shifts with products traveling from multiple locations and boarders, any discrepancy in the supply chain for high tech industry can have disastrous consequences for the enterprise.
Today, technology products are one of the fastest selling products across the globe. This means that technology enterprises especially those involved with hi-tech industry need a perfectly streamlined supply chain system to cater to the growing demand for their products. Any disruptions like equipment shortage or clogged pipelines due to natural disasters, etc. can put off supply chain management for such enterprises.
Remember the famous floods that stuck Thailand in 2011 and some of the popular and famous hard drive manufacturing units had to virtually shut shop leading to price escalations and product shortages across the globe. Only if such enterprises had a streamlined and agile supply chain system in place, the consequences could have been very different.
Hi-tech industry and supply chain risk management
There is no denying the fact that supply chain for the high tech industry is faced with multiple challenges owing to the nature of the industry. Continuous evolvement of technology, the birth of new service providers and partners as well as increasing competitive pressures all add up pressure on the supply chain lines. Here are some of the checklists to ensure your hi-tech enterprise is able to offer a streamlined supply chain mechanism that is agile enough to tackle and medium to long-term challenges.
Avail the first mover’s advantage
In the hi-tech industry, one of the imperatives of having a secured supply chain system is to ensure readiness to avail the ‘first mover’s advantage.’ Hi-tech industry is one industry which has ever-shrinking product lifecycles. New innovations and newer products are being flooded in the market every day. Imagine a scenario where your hi-tech enterprise is not ready to tackle a new product offered by a rival enterprise. A fast selling product may become obsolete faster than one may imagine. Having agile supply chain systems can ensure that there is enough development work going on at the back end to cater for any new product development in the industry. Continuous investment in research and development along with operations holds the key to maintain a fully functional supply chain for high tech industry.
Focusing on cost reduction
A Hi-tech industry more than any other needs a definite focus on cost competitiveness at all times. In the hi-tech world, there may not be necessarily any technology wise differences in various products. What often comes down to for a potential buyer is the price point. With similar features, price becomes the determining factor for a buyer. As a result supply chain for high tech industry needs to ensure there is always room for a price reduction at all times. The inflow of competitors and rivals means that enterprises must maintain a room for price reduction even before a rival offers a similar product at lower price points to ensure market share remains consistent.
Be ready for any regulatory changes
Hi-tech industry enterprises must also focus on updates and regulatory compliances for various products. The compliance challenge is not limited to just the final product offering, but every part right from procurement to delivery of the final product has multiple regulatory challenges that must be tackled effectively. Collecting constituent materials and recycling or disposing of technological waste requires due diligence that may change with time. A hi-tech industry enterprise should be ready to tackle any such regulatory changes with an end to end waste management system embedded in the supply chain mechanism of the enterprise.
Ensure higher supply chain visibility
Any hi-tech industry enterprise with its fast-selling product line always has multiple products of the manufacturing floor line. Only with highly visible supply chain functionality can the management seek insight into operational aspects of each such product development timeline. Keeping the management involved helps with faster decision making as it helps with easier identification of any pipeline clogs in supply chain functions. Once identified business managers can seek deep analysis to ensure such pipeline clogs are cleared for a smooth supply chain functioning.
Hi-tech industry enterprises have a number of holistic supply chain challenges, but with some smart insights such challenges can be managed and used to offer immaculate service and products allowing for a healthy market consolidation.
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