Major supply chain businesses optimistic of full Covid recovery within 12 months


A survey by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in the UK (CILT UK) has revealed that, despite the majority of logistics and supply chain organisations being affected by international supply issues, more than half of respondents are confident of a full recovery in 12 months.

Established in 1919, CILT (UK) is the chartered body for professionals involved in the movement of goods and people and their associated supply chains. A part of the CILT international family with over 33,000 members worldwide, CILT is the UK’s leading membership organisation for professionals working in logistics, transport and their associated supply chains.

LogMark, CILT (UK)s logistics and supply chain benchmarking club for corporate members, surveyed its members to get a picture of the future of supply chain following Covid and Brexit disruptions. Survey results were gathered from 50+ supply chain member organisations including representatives from Amazon, DHL, Castell, John Lewis, Logistex and NHS Supply Chain.

Sixty-two per cent of respondents noted major challenges such as supplier services and local logistics issues. Warehousing and distribution disruptions affected more than 50 per cent of respondents, with members reporting social distancing measures had altered picking and packing strategies. Staff availability was also flagged as a key issue, with 63.5 per cent of members reporting employment difficulties.

Despite the many challenges faced by the profession in the past 18 months, members indicated they were generally confident of a full Covid recovery. Over 70 per cent expressed they expect a return to pre-pandemic operation within 12 months.

However, only nine per cent of respondents were confident of reaching that milestone in the next three months, ahead of the Christmas period.

Kevin Richardson, CEO at CILT (UK), said every corner of the profession has experienced disruption during the pandemic, but it was encouraging to see a large number are looking toward a quick recovery.

“Our member responses give a good indication of challenges across all supply chains and we recognise driver shortages and the Christmas period will continue to test our services. As many businesses look to recover in the coming months, these insights will support future planning and resilience.”

“Sharing trends through this survey is hoped to spark conversation throughout our profession and facilitate knowledge sharing to strengthen our supply chains across the board,” Kevin said.

Over 72.5 per cent of members reported they had plans in place for similar future challenges and while Covid disruptions have been unprecedented, respondents could identify key business areas to strengthen.

When asked what changes were required to protect supply in future, international logistics was noted by 82 per cent of members, risk management was recognised by 63 per cent, and 45 per cent identified manufacturing.

Helen Hardy, Director of Membership and Engagement at CILT (UK), said the survey findings have been shared within the benchmarking club to grow awareness and encourage our profession to share solutions.

“We hope to use these findings to further support our members across all areas of supply chain. We want to help members to manage risk, reduce costs, run more efficiently and work together to increase supply chain resilience,” Helen said.

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