Natural disasters, extreme weather, sophisticated hackers and even localized events can make business travel challenging. From airline computer outages to impassable roads, civil unrest to labor strikes, unexpected events can have a demonstrable impact on employees who travel for both global and domestic business. What can be more challenging to navigate, however, are the risks to supply chain and logistics.
Thankfully, solutions like IMG’s supply chain security consulting can help mitigate difficult situations.
Any business that has experienced shipping delays or theft of or damage to cargo can attest to the fluid nature of end-to-end risks and their impact on bottom line. As with meetings and events, the use of technology has helped mitigate some supply chain risks. Companies have turned to GPS tracking and other tech solutions to reduce and deter theft of their shipments. Safety technology is helping over-the-road drivers avoid accidents that can lead to damaged and lost cargo.
But how have you flexed up to address supply chain risk from natural disasters, as an example?
According to CNBC, the number of billion-dollar disasters has steadily increased in recent years.1 Have those statistics- and their potential impact on your bottom line- been reflected in your planning? Cybercrime is another area that can directly impact your logistics…ransomware attacks, for example, can cause significant business interruption. How has your business continuity planning evolved to help you anticipate and avoid emerging threats? It’s not realistic to think we can prevent everything. But what is possible is reducing impact. The strongest mitigation efforts start with visibility to risk in the context of where and how you do business. Has your risk landscape changed recently? If so, how might that impact your operations?
Understanding and prioritizing risks can be complicated, however, especially because some risks aren’t obvious. Corporate travel can be risky and companies are increasingly embracing innovative ways to navigate those challenges while still connecting their people. In addition, this can also save costs for corporations. Video conferencing, for one, has become an effective way to bring employees together. Meetings, training and even global corporate events are taking place without anyone boarding a flight.
Like business travel, the causes of supply chain interruption are variable and highly fluid: severe weather, human behavior, technology failures and more. End-to-end anticipation of current global risks transcends supply chain security.
Are your policies, process and other employee guidelines updated to proactively address your company’s human risks? Have you refreshed your “acceptable use of company-owned devices” policy recently if cyber threats are a concern? Has your drug policy been reviewed, if legalized marijuana use could have any impact on your workforce? Have you examined your work-from-home or transportation policies proactively in geographic regions prone to severe weather? Does your planning reflect readiness for an agile response to your highest priority risks, or have your updates maintained your status quo as global risks continue to emerge?
In summary, it’s hard to plan for risks you don’t know about or can’t anticipate, and even harder to mitigate them after an event actually occurs. Until technology enables us to transport cargo as easily as we stream data, it’s vital to view your supply chain risks in the context of what that means today.
IMG Supply Chain Security Consulting
The Incident Management Group has decades of experience in the security industry. Our team of safety experts stands ready to help you alleviate employee fears with our corporate event security assistance, workplace violence consulting services, supply chain security consulting, corporate cybersecurity consulting advice and more. Contact us today!
Sources: (1) https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/10/billion-dollar-natural-disasters-rising-these-states-better-prepare.html