Finance and banking businesses now expect the unexpected – but is yours prepared to run with any eventuality?

Last year’s optimistic expectations of a ‘new normal’ are long gone, and UK banks and financial firms are reluctantly buckled up for ongoing uncertainty – so there’s no time like the present when it comes to futureproofing your supply chain.

For businesses and households alike, the is the tip of an iceberg of worsening global economic conditions, perhaps heading for a deeper recession in 2023 than previously forecast, as Goldman Sachs predicts this week.

But there is hope. We are already keenly aware of rising prices, with sharp upturns in fuel bills and costs of everyday essentials – which means we’re in a position to take action now, and protect operations ahead of forecasted tricker times.

Of course, turbulence in business is not catching us unawares, it’s with us every working day – but despite this, many finance companies and banks are taking action in order to better equip themselves to be able to run with any eventuality.

Resilience will be central to many organisations in 2023, and one good way to galvanise is to examine your supply chain in close detail. With that in mind, here are four potential improvement measures to consider.

Simplify your supply chain

1

Buying in bigger bulk from fewer suppliers – or just one if you can – will streamline your operations. It is important that you pre-establish that your supplier is complaint, and will utilise their buying power to pass on low prices to you.

Agreeing set prices for essentials, including items that are bespoke to you, will offer some certainty. Ask them to hold stock at current rates. If they value your custom, they will do their best to help.

Look for a supplier who understands you

2

Prioritise good relationships

3

Look for suppliers whose account managers know your business inside out, and can make recommendations based on buyer behaviour and trends. You can be confident that these operators will also have good relationships with vendors – ensuring you have the right products at the right time, at the right price

Simplification of a supply chain will afford clearer visibility and control of costs, via one detailed supplier management report, rather than documentation from several providers. Your dependable partner will have tail management specialists to work as an extension of your supply chain.

Seek visibility on costs

4

Make your supplier work for your net zero ambitions

5

Finally, remember your supplier’s robust environmental policy contributes favourably to your own. The environmental standards of every financial firm or bank’s supply chain is their responsibility. Challenge your supplier on scope 3 emissions. If they are worth your time and money, they will have plenty to say about this.

Covid, Russia, Brexit, and other factors have all contributed to supply chain disruption and more expensive transportation and shipping. But whatever the driving forces, we must not rest on our laurels when it comes to stepping up and striving to do better, most notably on sustainability goals, in the run up to COP27 – and as our own manifesto outlines.

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