April 6, 2023
AAMI ARRAY recently published an article featuring Douglas Hannah, Assistant Professor of Strategy and Innovation, discussing one campaign a company used to resolve a supply chain shortage.
Healthmark is a 54-year-old medical and surgical equipment supplier based in Michigan. During a time when supplies dwindled, they were scrambling to meet increased customer demand in the midst of the pandemic.
The company embarked on a “Bringing it Home” campaign where they have taken on lessons learned from the pandemic. Shifting their supply chain with goals of making more products themselves, they sourced vendors and materials closer to their location and developed alternative sources of supply. Ralph Basile, VP of marketing and regulatory affairs at Healthmark noted that when supply chain challenges came with COVID, they had to adjust. Their first preference was to bring it in house, so they had more control over their supply chain.
Companies like Healthmark were hit hard due of the sheer gap between supply and demand. Previously only used for very specific patients in certain circumstances, isolation gowns, face shields, and masks were now essential for everyone. Usually, supplying PPE is flexible nation-wide, Hannah states, but this became impossible when the demand was everywhere.
The practice of re-shoring by Healthmark is one way to avoid potential problems in the future Hannah notes, although it doesn’t completely eliminate risk. It is now more important than ever for companies to regain control over their supply chains.