Canadian Manufacturing

Supply chain strategy a key pillar of growth, even for small businesses

A survey commissioned by UPS shows a strong focus on implementing sound supply chain strategies played a key role in the overall success of a business



MISSISSAUGAOnt.—Supply chain strategy has emerged from the shadows as a key pillar of growth and profit, according to a survey of Canadian businesses commissioned by UPS Canada.

More than 80 per cent of business leaders agree that a well-managed supply chain is a key competitive advantage in today’s global economy.

And as if to prove the point, the study found 80 per cent of businesses with a supply chain strategy met or exceeded their growth targets last year, while businesses without a defined strategy were 12 per cent less likely to reach their targets.

“These results indicate that businesses with a defined supply chain strategy perform better than those that don’t and that businesses of all sizes can leverage this opportunity to increase competitiveness and profitability,” said Jim Ramsay, vice-president of Global Freight Forwarding, UPS Canada. “Customers are demanding improved visibility, scalability and mobility—be it via ecommerce or commercial shipping—and the supply chain is essentially the nervous system that delivers the end experience in the most efficient, cost effective manner.”

The survey also indicated that of those businesses with a defined strategy, 84 per cent agreed that understanding and effectively managing their supply chain and shipping operations were key factors in driving growth and profit opportunities in the last year.

While the survey found that businesses of all sizes can benefit from having a defined supply chain strategy, small-to-medium sized businesses are less likely to integrate supply chain and shipping into their core business model.

Nearly one-third of business leaders in this category suggested that supply chain and shipping is important, but that it is not a priority because their business is too small.

The survey found that 65 per cent of large businesses (annual supply chain expenditure in excess of $100,000 and annual revenue of more than $10 million) had a defined strategy in place.

Mid-sized organizations (annual revenue<$10 million and more than 100 employees) were less likely to have a strategy in place at 53 per cent. Organizations with fewer than 100 employees were the least likely to have a strategy in place at 45 per cent.

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