As tariffs and retaliations are now regular topics in the news, U.S. industrial businesses, especially smaller and specialized manufacturing firms, need a strategy to avoid disruption from trade war implications.
A Strategy for Stability
Since late 2017, the current administration has sought to create tariffs and restrictions on imports intending to protect national interest and improve America’s global competitiveness. Whether the approach is thought to be reckless or reasonable, businesses are simply working to maintain profitable operations during these changing times.
From capital goods to consumer products, tariffs and quotas are being enacted or threatened. Retaliatory tariffs on exported American goods from other nations compound the effect. While the impact for consumers is only just starting to be realized, how the trade war will affect global trade remains to be seen.
For U.S. manufacturers, however, time is of the essence to re-evaluate production plans and supply chain strategies to minimize disruption and maximize new opportunities. A responsive, local supply chain strategy is one, proactive way companies can open up new sourcing opportunities while working to maintain operational stability.
Steel and aluminum tariffs are boosting business for the country’s steelmakers with increased revenue, profit, and hiring. But, for manufacturers that use steel or metal for production or fabrication, the tariffs are creating challenges.
According to the National Small Business Association, the steel tariffs are problematic and could have “negative implications and likely will result in higher materials prices for manufacturers and thus increased prices of many goods.”
Smaller manufacturers are advised to have strategies developed that can help counter the effects of tariffs. One critical area where companies can regain control is in evaluating the supply chain and investigating local sourcing.
In the article In a Global Trade War, How Should Supply Chain Professionals Defend Their Companies, published in Supply Chain Management Review, finding alternative suppliers is critical for companies to succeed in the new trade war world.
The article points out the many challenges manufacturers face in supply chain management including the complicated process of qualifying and risk assessment of new suppliers, supplier delivery requirements, and long lead-times for complex or specialty parts.
According to the article, “Supply chain professionals should take immediate action…to secure new suppliers. Your focus should be on developing alternative and flexible supply chains that can be adjusted with speed.”
SyncFab Supply Chain Network Simplicity
Manufacturers seeking specialty parts suppliers, precision parts manufacturers or CNC machine shops that are pre-qualified, high-quality, and in the U.S. look to the SyncFab Smart Manufacturing network.
SyncFab is the first decentralized manufacturing supply chain that uses blockchain technology to connect manufacturer buyers and suppliers directly. Using local, U.S.-based specialty parts manufacturers as part of the supplier network, SyncFab helps companies reduce uncertainty and enables buyers to keep production moving with a secure, responsive, and completely transparent supply chain process.
In addition to providing supplier security and strategically coping with trade war dynamics, SyncFab will simplify even the most complex or uncertain supply chains with a simple, easy-to-use, and secure online model. Learn more about SyncFab.