Webinar: Supply Chain Downsizing and Facility Consolidations: How to Make Difficult Decisions in the COVID-19 Crisis

Mar 24, 2020

Commonwealth Supply Chain Advisors will be hosting a webinar on Consolidating Your Supply Chain Network to outline steps companies can take to make responsible decisions about the design of their supply chain network in the wake of a business downturn.

Attendees will learn:

Fit, Service, Savings, & Execution: Four Steps to a Sound Decision

Commonwealth has developed a four-step decision framework to help companies that need to make decisions about facility consolidation.

  1. Fit: Is it possible to fit all the items from Facility A into Facility B? What creative storage practices could be utilized to make this work?
  2. Service: Can service levels and delivery times be maintained if Facility A is closed?
  3. Savings: How much can be saved if Facility A is closed? What will be the return on investment for any capital which must be invested in high density storage methods to make the consolidation possible?
  4. Execution: How do we execute the plan in an orderly way?

A Fast-Track Approach for Rapid Decision Support

The COVID-19 situation is unprecedented and unfolding rapidly. In just a matter of days, a company’s entire business outlook may be altered. There may not be time to follow a process which might take several months under normal circumstances. Commonwealth will discuss ways that companies can fast-track the analysis of these variables and reduce their time to make the decision.

The webinar will also discuss ways that this process can be followed which are consistent with social distancing, and which do not place employees or partners at undue risk of infection.

Looking Past COVID-19

The evidence appears to show that the COVID-19 pandemic has leveled off in China. Many companies are reporting that their factories are returning to normal capacities. Given the drastic measures being taken to curtail the virus in the U.S. and other countries, there is good reason for optimism that life may begin to return to something resembling normal in a time frame similar to that of China (eight to ten weeks?).

The point is – this crisis will not last forever. Any supply chain planning done at the present time must look beyond the pandemic to a time when business re-open and consumer spending resumes.

What will that world look like? It seems clear that the twenty-year trend away from brick-and-mortar retail and towards e-commerce will be greatly accelerated by this crisis. Amazon recently reported it was hiring 100,000 new employees. Commonwealth has had discussions with other companies with an e-commerce focus who have also reported business increases since the social distancing measures went into effect. Transitioning distribution centers to be able to efficiently handle more e-commerce orders, and less retail or wholesale orders, seems like it will be a vital task in the new world that will emerge.

The webinar will touch on ways that companies can make this shift to e-commerce and will be followed up by a second webinar, which specifically addresses this topic in more detail.


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