There’s no magic formula for navigating commodity challenges or supply chain woes, but five best practices can keep you out of hot water. Curious what they are? 

5 Best Practices for Navigating Supply Chain Woes and Commodity Challenges

  • Proactive Communication with Vendors
  • Expedite as Needed
  • Request Vendor Updates Frequently
  • Plan for Your Risk Level & Increase Safety Stock as Needed
  • Manage Your Customer’s Demands

Jodi Reeder, GMI Corporation Director of Supply Chain, notes that it really boils down planning, building long-lasting business relationships, and giving vendors visibility of upcoming needs. Doing the five above things well can keep raw materials flowing in and production running as smoothly as possibly, even when markets are volatile. 

Yes, there have been raw material shortages across the board, delays at port of entry, labor challenges and constraints, and concerns surrounding cyber-security across the world, but GMI’s biggest concern has been several custom metals extruded to precise dimensions to optimize machine performance and reduce scrap for its customers. 

CNC Machining Commodity Challenges

Starting late 2021, GMI began to experience a growing snowball of commodity issues stemming from COVID-19 production shutdowns and a worldwide workforce shortage as production was slow to ramp back up. Some raw materials, specifically aluminum and nickel have seen extensive supply issues and pricing fluctuation. Additionally, during the past few years demand from medical device customers has grown greater than ever seen, as healthcare needs around the world have increased.

It’s really been a perfect storm and no industry has been spared, notes Jodi. The medical device industry has been especially impacted with extensive and unprecedented supply chain disruptions, but due to proactive planning, open lines of communication and strong relationships, GMI has and continues to navigate the storm and deliver for its customers. 

It may sound simple, but doing the basics well makes all the difference when the things get bumpy. While the supply chain landscape is complex, when we work together, we can navigate anything. 

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