Contingency plan supported NEC's quick recovery from Japanese disaster

2 September 2011

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4 September 2011 | Adam Leach

Nine minutes after the earthquake hit Japan on 11 March, electronics manufacturer NEC had implemented an ‘emergency operational task force’ to restore operations.

Each function, including procurement, at the company formed a special team to manage the crises affecting the group’s operations, according to the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility Report 2011. The company suffered serious disruptions to its procurement activities and distribution network as a result of damage to roads, fuel shortages and traffic restrictions following the earthquake and tsunami.

The group’s quick response and contingency plan enabled it to restart production and logistics operations by 23 March, but due to the range of areas affected by the earthquake, sourcing continued to be restricted. The company plans to use the experiences gained from the aftermath to update and strengthen its contingency plans.

Nobuhiro Endo, president, NEC, said: “The scale of the disaster was unprecedented, and the NEC Group was impacted heavily. However, we were able to restore normal operations at five factories in the Tohoku region by 23 March.”

The CSR report also revealed it is working with its suppliers to improve sustainability in the supply chain. So far in 2011 it has surveyed the sustainability efforts of 46 suppliers, analysed their efforts and shared information on environmental measures. In 2012 it plans to enhance suppliers’ risk and compliance management capabilities.

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