Dominant Supply Chain Update
The pandemic has brought with it never ending associated restrictions and lockdowns, which has made living in a world of uncertainty the new norm. The past 18 months has presented innumerable challenges that has ensured that only the most adaptable and responsive businesses would thrive. At Dominant, we have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure our capacity to maintain supply of critical cleaning and infection control products.
During the first lockdowns in March 2020, we quickly learnt that traditional just-in-time supply chain strategy simply cannot perform in the face of an unexpected, disruptive global event. We have a duty to maintain our operation and ensure supply of critical cleaning and sanitation products to our customers in order to protect your staff, business and brand. We made it our mission to develop a new strategy where we promptly identified the risks and road blocks, in an effort to overcome this uncertainty immediately, and well into the future.
The following key areas were categorised as areas in need of immediate attention:
Contingency planning in the event one of our staff on site contracted COVID-19
Quality assurance of alternative raw materials and packaging
Ongoing technology advancements
As fortune has it, we had already commenced a process of improving and developing our local manufacturing facilities in Adelaide, having completed a fully operational state of the art 2000 square metre distribution centre, adjacent to our manufacturing plant. What did this achieve? This allowed us to move from a third party logistics company and various remote storage to consolidate to a well-managed warehouse, operated by industry professionals.
First key component of our strategy: Spread of COVID-19 in interconnected sites
Our action plan:
Strict protocols were put in place across the business to limit, and in some cases prohibit movement between functions - what did this mean if a staff member became infected and had to quarantine? A fully functional business.
Enhancing our off site manufacturing capability by partnering with a local Adelaide company outside of our industry – if a catastrophic event was to occur, we were able to rely on them to manufacture under supervision.
Second key component of our strategy: Diversify & strengthen supply chain and enhance manufacturing & filling capability
Our action plan:
Source key pieces of available filling equipment that we could commission quickly.
What did this mean in the grand scheme of things?
An ability to quickly flex production up or down to meet unstable demand. It also meant that we could produce excess product with the intent of producing enough to fill each of our warehouses around Australia, giving us a 4-6-week buffer if our production was to come to a standstill.
Since April 2020, we are currently holding 2-3 times the level of finished goods prior to COVID-19.
Of course, none of this would’ve been possible without raw materials and storage space for them. We identified all of the critical products that were imported and set up a program of identifying multiple suppliers for each and quality tested these alternative raw materials. We then effectively did away with just-in-time ordering of these lines, allowing us to now hold up to one year’s worth of the key raw materials.
More recently, we have made further acquisition of another adjacent building to secure additional warehouse space allowing us to quadruple storage area for raw materials. This acquisition brings incredible efficiencies and assurance to our business and customers since we are no longer reliant on just-in-time deliveries in an unstable and ever-changing global supply chain.
Third key component of our strategy: The ongoing advancement of our IT operating system and implementing state of the art security systems
Our action plan:
We always ensure that we are using the highest standard of IT systems available, with continuous upgrades to allow effective communication between our facilities, staff, and remote locations.
The primary goal of all IT upgrades is always security first. With the number of high profile businesses around the globe succumbing to fatal system hacks, it was critical for us to implement the best security systems available to us to ensure data protection and redundant backup systems in the worst-case scenario
Each day COVID-19 teaches us a new lesson and creates the need for more creative thinking. We are certain that our progress and improvement in risk mitigation and supply chain management will provide our customers with the security they need now more than ever before.