Article submitted by: Ryan Wilson, The Trucker Industry
The medical industry is booming. Market research analysts project that by 2020, the pharmaceutical market will be worth $1.3 trillion. This growth is powered by the emergence of new treatments for formerly intractable diseases like cancer and HIV.
But this explosion of scientific advancement has a downside: It’s driving up the cost to develop new drugs. Pharmaceutical companies must invest more in R&D to stay competitive, which means they need to carefully manage their supply chains to keep production costs low and ensure a steady revenue stream from sales. Pharmaceutical manufacturers know the importance of the supply chain to the successful launch of their products, but they often overlook the need for collaboration with the trucking industry.
As a biopharmaceutical company, you understand that product quality is vital to the success of your business. The recent global economic crisis has focused on how companies can be more efficient. The supply chain is a core element in becoming leaner and more efficient. However, many leading pharmaceutical companies face challenges when managing their supply chains as they struggle with maximizing performance and minimizing costs.
A lot goes into drug development, but here are nine specific challenges biopharmaceutical companies face when managing their complex supply chains:
1. Ensuring Supplies are Available When and Where They Are Needed
One of the most important aspects of a biopharmaceutical company’s supply chain is ensuring that supplies are available when and where they are needed. It can be challenging, as it requires careful coordination between suppliers and customers to ensure that inventory is managed properly. In addition, disruptions to the supply chain can significantly impact business operations.
2. Planning for Emergencies
Another challenge biopharmaceutical companies face when managing their supply chains is planning emergencies. Natural disasters, supplier failures, and other unforeseen events can cause significant disruptions to business operations. It is therefore important to have contingency plans in place to minimize the impact of these events.
3. Managing Stock Levels
Another challenge that biopharmaceutical companies face is managing stock levels. It can be difficult, as it is essential to ensure that enough inventory is on hand to meet customer demand, but not too much inventory that it becomes costly to store and ship. It is also essential to keep track of supplier lead times and delivery schedules to ensure that products are delivered when they are needed.
4. Coordinating across Multiple Departments
Coordinating across multiple departments can be another challenge for biopharmaceutical companies when managing their supply chains. It often involves coordinating between the sales and operations departments to ensure that products are delivered when and where they are needed. It is also important to coordinate between departments about inventory management.
5. Adhering to Compliance Guidelines
Another challenge that biopharmaceutical companies face when managing their supply chains: adhering to compliance guidelines. Numerous regulations must be met regarding the manufacturing, storage, and distribution of products, making expanding into foreign markets difficult. However, meeting these challenges can provide significant benefits in increasing revenue and market share for biopharmaceutical companies worldwide.
6. Managing a complex and ever-changing supply chain
The biopharmaceutical supply chain is one of the most complex and challenging globally. It constantly changes as new drugs and treatments develop, and companies must continually adapt. It can be a challenge, especially for smaller companies that may not have the resources to manage a complex supply chain.
7. Keeping track of inventory
Another challenge faced by biopharmaceutical companies is tracking inventory. With so many products moving through the supply chain at any given time, it can be difficult to keep track of what has been shipped, where, and when. It can lead to costly mistakes and delays in product delivery.
8. Ensuring timely delivery of products
The timely delivery of products is critical in the biopharmaceutical industry. Any delay can significantly impact patients who depend on those products to treat or cure their illnesses. It can be a challenge for companies that rely on third-party suppliers to help them meet tight deadlines.
9. Managing supplier relationships
Building and maintaining positive supplier relationships is key in the biopharmaceutical industry. Companies need to trust their suppliers to deliver quality products on time and within budget. Poor supplier relationships can lead to missed deadlines, higher costs, and even product shortages.
Biopharmaceutical companies can ensure that their supply chains are running smoothly by having a comprehensive supply chain management plan. As new regulations are implemented, they should also make sure that these regulations are being adhered to at all times. The most important element of managing the supply chain is communication with suppliers, who often have intimate knowledge of local markets to help companies meet their goals. To learn more about how to manage your company’s supply chains, contact us today! We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have!