Supply Chain Disruption Relief
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown just how fragile the global supply chain can be. COVID-19 has disrupted supply chains around the world causing mass shortages and extended lead times. Items like PPE, parts, chips, packaging were all needed. The supply of these items quickly dwindled and when there was seemingly no solution, the additive manufacturing community stepped up to help. Additive manufacturers stepped up and started changing their production lines to start producing these essential items.
No industry has been safe from these shortages:
These shortages are causing extreme congestion and bottlenecks. On top of the supply shortages, the cost of freight from China and Europe has soared. On top of supply shortages, labor shortages have also been a huge factor. Lack of freight drivers and production workers have been worsening these effects.
Typically, using a global supply chain can be extremely beneficial by lowering costs. Reduced labor and operating expenses allow for companies to invest in other, sometimes more innovative ideas. Problems that arise in a link of the supply chain cause a ripple down effect. These effects eventually are felt throughout the entire chain. For example, with shortages in chips, there have not only been disruptions in the automotive industry, but the telecommunications and equipment industry as well; moving down the chain.
We can help combat these shortages. At Met-L-Flo, we understand production must go on. We have a whole arsenal of products and technologies that can produce your parts. Tell us what attributes are necessary- the surface finish needs to be smooth, high-temperature requirement needs to be transparent- and we can find a process and material that will simulate those attributes, both mechanically and physically!
Additive manufacturing stepped in to produce PPE when the world needed it most. AM stepped in to provide ventilators, face shields, oxygen valves, hand sanitizer holders, etc. Due to the AM industry, individuals were allowed to have some protection against the COVID-19 virus. (Click here for more information)
The pandemic was not the first time AM stepped in to alleviate supply chain disruptions. The Marines have also realized this potential advantage of AM. Printing parts on demand, or when they are needed, prevents carrying around unnecessary amounts of supplies. Keeping a digital inventory rather than a physical inventory helps save storage space, prevents extra material usage, and saves money. We do a deep dive into how the Marines utilized fabrication and AM to get parts to soldiers. Click here to read all about it.
If you or your company are currently feeling the effects of supply chain disruptions, get in touch. Let us know what those are so we can see how we can help you. OR fill out this survey and after the survey has closed, we will send you our findings. Sign up on the left for our newsletter to stay in the loop with all things Met-L-Flo!