Supply Chain Quality Management in Uncertain Times

supply chain quality management

Recent events have illustrated the need for effective supply chain quality management.  Industries in any sector are vulnerable to unforeseen changes in global economic and political forces.  Indeed, the veracity of supply chains are even subject to microscopic viruses that can render entire companies inoperable.

The Role of a Quality Management System in Supply Chain Processes

A role of any quality management system is to identify risks.  There are numerous risks involved in procuring items essential to the delivery of a product or service.  Some are obvious such as price, consistent quality of items, and logistics that effect timely delivery.  Others are more nuanced, such as the reputational risk associated with the actions of the procurer or supplier.

Regardless of the complexities involved, a risk assessment should include profiles of all supply chain members and identify potential vulnerabilities.  This can be challenging in many instances because a supplier may contend that certain information of this nature is proprietary.

Reputational Risk in the Supply Chain

Accountability of sourcing has become more complex with the advance of globalization.  This can lead to undesired and often unforeseen consequences that can damage a product’s reputation. 

Recently, increased scrutiny has being leveled at the use of forced labor in countries with poor human rights records.  International legislation has been applying pressure on governments that are involved in these practices.  An example of this is a ban on goods from the Xinjiang province of China. 

Globalization of the supply chain involves the import and export laws associated with the involved countries.  Here again vulnerabilities exist.  There are levels of complexities that must be dealt with to ensure that regulations prohibiting foreign corrupt practices are not violated

Clearly, involvement with a supply chain partner that does not share common core values can lead to serious marketing issues.  This is because once a brand has been associated with malfeasance it can be difficult to reform it.

Cybersecurity and Supply Chain Risk

Cybersecurity has become a major concern for businesses worldwide.  Currently the business world is generally in a game of catch up to protect sensitive data of their enterprises as well as of their customers. 

The supply chain has repeatedly been shown to be the most vulnerable area for many companies.  This is because it can often be unclear as to who is managing the risks of data breach.  Partnering with suppliers that employ an industry appropriate Information Security Management System (ISMS) is crucial for establishing data security policies and practices that protect all parties.

CVG Strategy Consulting Services

CVG Strategy consultants have extensive experience in the creation and maintenance of quality and information management systems.  Our areas of expertise include ISO 9001, AS9100, ISO 27001, NIST 800-171, and CMMC.  This allows us to tailor a system that meets your organizations specific requirements for increased security and customer satisfaction. 

We can help you assess your entire risk profile, including your supply chain, so that you can form internal and external policies and procedures to promote the continued growth of your enterprise.

Kevin Gholston

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