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How to Become an IT Supply Chain Superhero

February 2022
Sagenet Blog Supply Chain

It turns out that even superheroes are vulnerable to supply chain disruptions. DC Comics, publisher of such iconic titles as Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, recently confirmed that ongoing supply chain issues are forcing weeks- and months-long delays in the production of some of its best-known features.

In truth, the supply chain has become functional kryptonite for most businesses. Pandemic-triggered workforce and material shortages coupled with transportation issues have weakened almost every sector of the global economy.

The technology sector has been particularly hard hit. Shortages of essential components such as semiconductors, transistors and circuit boards are expected to extend well into 2023. You may have to wait as long as five months to get some types of chips and up to three months for other gear such as laptops, PCs, servers, network switches and wireless access points — although analysts expect those lead times to gradually improve throughout the year.

Despite these challenges, there’s no need to discontinue important IT projects. In fact, Gartner analysts say most companies plan to increase technology spending this year with a focus on expanding the modernization efforts they started during the transition to remote work in 2020. IT modernization, automation, hybrid computing and enhanced cybersecurity remain high-priority initiatives.

The trick will be to anticipate delays, proactively monitor your supply chain partners and develop contingency plans. Here are five ways you can mitigate delays and remain positioned to advance your key technology plans in 2022:

Expect the unexpected. When developing your project plans, anticipate delays or other unforeseen circumstances that could impact your project timeline. Order any gear you’ll need well in advance and assume it will be late in arriving.

Maintain communications. Supply chains can comprise hundreds of third-party vendors, producers, suppliers, subcontractors and distributors. To mitigate risk, maintain contact with your key partners to understand what events and conditions might create disruptions or delays.

Have a backup plan. Create a contingency plan by considering product substitutions in advance. Consider strategic stockpiling of critical components to reduce the impact of sudden disruptions.

Leverage the cloud. Cloud-based resources can improve visibility into the supply chain by creating a centralized location for connecting data sources, monitoring inventory and tracking shipments. The ability to quickly spin up infrastructure in the cloud can also keep projects on track. Instead of waiting months for a new physical server, you can deploy a cloud-based virtual server in just a couple of minutes.

Embrace strategic partnerships. A long-term relationship with a technology provider such as SageNet can help minimize delays and relieve much of the pressure associated with IT supply chain management. The SageNet team takes a holistic approach to solutions, handling everything from design and architecture to procurement and delivery.

Supply chains have never been faster than a speeding bullet, but ongoing bottlenecks are creating challenges for organizations around the world. Fortunately, you don’t need superpowers to keep your IT projects on track. Proper planning, good communications and strategic partnerships can help save the day.

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