Supply Chains Taking a Leap to Handle the COVID-19 Pandemic

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Initially, when the sudden outbreak of COVID-19 started impacting our daily lives, a lot of questions started arising in consumers’ minds.

How will we get daily essentials?
What will be the source of earning if offices temporarily shut down?

Fortunately, all these hurdles were overcome when everything went digital! Talking about the essential goods, retailers made continuous efforts to provide all the commodities to the customers while also maintaining their well-being. 

Retail supply chains got affected globally; however, retailers stayed determined to keep moving essentials to the store shelves and doorsteps of the consumers. 

Undoubtedly, COVID-19 has posed numerous challenges in the supply chain industry, workers, business partners, etc. Therefore, if you’re hooked up with the same industry, this article is for you! 

In this article, we’ll throw light on retail supply chain management or what actions have been taken by the retailers to resolve the challenges.

Priority Areas for Supply Chains

The pandemic has forced supply chain managers to apply sudden changes to the existing mechanism. Therefore, below mentioned are the five key areas being prioritized:

1. Suppliers: Securing Demand  

Surging demand for goods has left the store shelves empty. Thus, retailers are closely working with supplier bases to get through the same. The foremost priority is to secure a reliable supply by accelerating the process of orders. 

Numerous retailers are working towards easing the payment mechanism, broadening delivery windows, etc. Also, the focus is being shifted from non-essential to essential goods for boosting the procedure. 

2. Marketing Operations: Redirect Inventory 

As retailers are working hard to meet the demands of the consumers, they’ll also need to regulate the changes across planning, purchasing, and inventory management. Retailers altered their purchasing plans to emphasize higher demand goods and pushed inventories to locations where sales were speedy. 

3. Distribution: Increasing Capacity

Distribution is the stage where companies face an overlap of demand for non-discretionary and discretionary goods. As a result, many companies reassigned their employees to the distribution teams temporarily to bridge the gap between demand and supply. 

Now that employees play a crucial role in the distribution stage, it is important to take necessary precautions to keep the workers healthy. Thus, retailers are working on suspending the operations at intervals to sanitize the equipment and areas. Health screenings are taken into consideration to make sure that no worker is sick. 

4. Logistics: A Balance Between Quickness and Compliance

One of the things that retailers are hoping for is securing enough goods to move them to the stores reliably. However, it can lead to additional expenses, due to which retailers have adopted a strategy to eliminate distribution centers and directly ship to the stores. 

5. Fulfilment: Reliable Delivery

Refrainment of moving outdoors, self-quarantining, and a few other reasons have directly contributed to the rise of online shopping and local deliveries. These changes are huge; however, we witnessed that the retailers did manage to adopt these practices efficiently. 

A strategy taken up by retailers is to widen the delivery window. For instance, scheduling the same day or instant delivery to two-three days. It helped them to group the deliveries of the same location so that all the goods and essentials could be delivered in one go, saving on time and expenses. 

It is essential to mention that every other supply chain has now developed a mobile application using which consumers can place their orders. Thus, it has not only made the overall functioning of the business efficient, but convenient for customers. 

If you’re a part of the same business, we would advise you to do the same. However, if you’re still not convinced, go through the advantages you’ll witness upon developing a mobile app. 

Advantages of Building a Mobile App for a Supply Business  

Effective Communication Across the Supply Chain

Any miscommunication with the drivers can lead to a delay or misplaced packages. Therefore, one of the top-most advantages of building a mobile app for your supply chain business is being able to communicate properly. The in-built inventory management system of the app easily overcomes the complications caused by the traditional methods of maintaining a supply chain.

Efficiency of Analyzing Data

With higher demand comes more data. Therefore, it is essential to keep the data in one place so that it can be accessed and analyzed easily. Building a mobile app will give a clear picture of the business, and the decision-makers can work accordingly to improve the mechanism further. 

Enhanced Booking and Payment Procedure 

By building a mobile app for supply chains, customer service can be improved. How? 
The customers can schedule a parcel pickup date and time, pay online for the same, and more. 

Simplified Warehouse Management

Delivering goods timely is not the only primary job of a supply chain. The warehouse must be managed properly as these are the spaces where goods and essentials are kept before dispatching. Building a mobile app that consists of warehouse management features will be extremely beneficial for the business, enabling you to keep track of every activity. 

To Sum Up 

It was a tough challenge brought by the pandemic for retailers to tweak their traditional methods and match up with the new trends. However, supply chains successfully managed to do the same while maintaining the safety of their workers and consumers. 


Ankit Singh

Ankit Singh is a seasoned entrepreneur, who has crafted a niche for himself at such a young age. He is a COO and Founder of Techugo. Apart from holding expertise in business operations, he has a keen interest in sharing knowledge about mobile app development through his writing skills.

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