Sourcing staff 'kept awake' by anxiety over supply chain issues

posted by Andrew Allen
27 October 2021

Sourcing professionals have revealed high levels of anxiety ​over ​current supply chain issues​, according to​ a new report

​R​esults of the first Voices of Sourcing Report​ ​show a massive 90% of respondents said managing supply chain disruptions ​is now their ​"​top priority​". 
 
Compiled by sourcing optimisation company, Keelvar, ​the findings include feedback from more than 100 global procurement professionals. 

​More than half of those questioned ​said they are ​"​kept awake​"​ at night by ​thoughts of ​how they ​will react to disruptions and capacity supply problems. Moreover, managing disruption ranked as the most important ​factor for two-thirds of responde​rs​.
 
Commenting on the findings​,​ ​Keelvar CEO ​Alan Holland said: “Procurement and sourcing leaders have had plenty to report when it comes to their collective shift in priorities to cope with new challenges.
 
“Respondents revealed they are facing severe capacity and labour limitations, as well as a spike in canceled contracts.”
 
​Results also unveiled the extent to which disruption is affecting decision​-making.
 
Some 41% of those polled said disruptions were refocusing their attention on investing in technology to help soften ​the blow, while 28% said they would be adopting emerging AI technology​ to cope​.

A staggering 99% of respondents agreed that ​more ​parts of the sourcing process should be automated​.​
 
Interestingly, 35% of respondents said complexities in the​ir​ supply chain​s​ had​ caused the​ir team​ headcount ​to ​grow "slightly​"​ or ​"​significantly​". ​And m​ore than half predicted their sourcing teams would grow in the next five years.
 
But while managing uncertainty was a top concern, the report also revealed that sourcing professionals were having to do this ​while also addressing the need for greater sustainability.
 
The findings ​show that although only 32% of respondents rate sustainability as their top priority​ now​, they predict ​this will ​become a bigger business concern over the next five years. In fact​,​ they predicted it would eclipse quality issues, innovation and costs.

​It also indicated that increasing supplier diversity and recycled packaging were the top two ​factors that ​will impact sourcing over the next five years.
 
Fortunately, ​only 18% ​of professionals cited board-level buy​-in​ ​as a worry​, although the majority (65%) ​find justifying cost increases ​will be their biggest problem​ and 58%​ said measuring and reporting on sustainability ​will be difficult.
 
Holland added: “With complexity at an all-time high, it is clear organisations need to make quick sourcing decisions to ensure continuity and resiliency.”

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