- Understand the supply chain.
- Physically map the supply chain.
- Trade information for inventory.
- Look into the future about variables that will affect your business.
- Manage risks.
- Measure, measure, measure.
Of course, you need to familiarize yourself with all aspects of the supply chain before you make any attempt to improve upon it, knowing all the whos, whats, and whys. Drawing a literal map of how the chain works helps you better understand what you think you already know. Since inventory is expensive and information is cheap, trade information for inventory whenever possible. Dr. Rogers says a big reason why businesses close their doors is because inventory was not properly managed. Try to anticipate what in advance might be coming around the corner, such as increasing travel costs, and decide how to prepare for these possibilities. As always, manage risks as they appear, and measure every variable that you believe has a relevant effect on the supply chain. Reassess metrics decided upon in the past to see if they are still relevant to the supply chain's needs today. Put these tips into action to ensure the health of your supply chain.