28 Supply Chain Professionals Share The Biggest Challenges Of Supply Chain Management

25 July 2019

Supply chain management is a multi-faceted process with many stakeholders and even more moving parts. New technology aims to make the supply chain more efficient, yet investing in the wrong technology further complicates productivity while hindering profitability.

Effective supply chain management offers numerous benefits for companies, so overcoming challenges to keep things running smoothly is a top priority for supply chain professionals. To learn more about the biggest supply chain challenges plaguing companies today and what supply chain leaders can do to mitigate risks and overcome common challenges, we reached out to a panel of supply chain professionals and asked them to answer this question:

“What’s the single biggest challenge of supply chain management (and how can companies overcome it)?”

Meet Our Panel of Supply Chain Professionals:

Read on to learn what our supply chain pros had to say about the biggest challenges of supply chain management and how you can overcome them.

Charlie Wilgus


Charlie Wilgus is the General Manager of the Manufacturing & Supply Chain Executive Search Division at Lucas Group, North America’s premier executive search firm.

“Optimization and efficiency are at the core of every company’s supply chain strategy these days…”

While they strive for perfection in these areas, there are more challenges and limitations than ever before. Additionally, the advancements and constant changes in technology and analytics play a huge role in supporting the success or failure of a modern day supply chain. As if this wasn’t enough, transportation costs are rising and forcing companies to constantly adjust and optimize.

There is one common thread behind all of these issues that rises to the top of list of challenges for companies today — cost control. Perhaps one of the biggest dilemmas in cost control is dealing with the new tariffs that have been imposed. Companies have been in a “wait and see” mode for the last three to six months with regard to this, and now their procurement and supply chain leadership are being forced to find new and creative ways to handle the purchasing and movement of goods on a global scale. There is no easy answer to solve this current challenge, and many companies are already experiencing the financial impact of these tariffs on their bottom line. Some companies are having to retract and tighten up production and inventory levels to ride out the storm, while others are finding innovative work-arounds to get their goods shipped and imported with respect to packaging, labeling and logistics.

While we have not seen the implications for consumers just yet, it is certainly assumed that this cost will squeeze margins to a level that will have to be shared by consumers in the form of higher prices for products and services down the road. In the meantime, companies need to make sure they have the most talented negotiators and leaders heading up their procurement and supply chain functions. While this won’t magically solve the problems, it will help control their outcomes and put the organization in the best position for future growth and success.

Read The Entire Article Here: “28 Supply Chain Professionals Share The Biggest Challenges Of Supply Chain Management,” 6 River Systems, By Chris Dunakin