Regulatory compliance is the top supply chain pain point for healthcare professionals, cited by 60 per cent of respondents, according to the seventh annual UPS “Pain in the (Supply) Chain” survey.
Not only that, some 78 per cent cite regulatory compliance and increasing regulations as a top trend driving business and supply chain changes.
Product protection also is increasingly challenging in a highly global marketplace, with 46 per cent citing product security as a top challenge and 40 per cent citing product damage and spoilage as a top concern.
The survey conducted by TNS for UPS, covers more than 530 healthcare executives in Western Europe, the Americas and Asia.
It found that economic factors are also at play, with 49 per cent of those surveyed still feeling an impact from the economic downturn six years later. Some 44 per cent cited cost management as a top supply chain concern.
“Companies that embrace new technologies and transformative supply chain strategies to mitigate risks will be more likely to capitalize on new growth opportunities in the healthcare marketplace of tomorrow,” said John Menna, UPS vice president, global healthcare strategy.
Of those companies that are successful in mitigating risk and increasing competitiveness, the majority are leveraging partnerships along with on-going technology investments. Of logistics decision makers surveyed worldwide:
* 78 per cent cite logistics and distribution partnerships as a top strategy to manage supply chain costs
* 65 per cent use logistics and distribution partnerships to successfully access global markets
* 61 per cent use collaboration, including vested logistics and distribution partnerships, to successfully embrace new distribution and go-to-market channels, while 23 per cent use mergers and acquisitions to do so
* 59 per cent are working with a 3PL as a top strategy to increase efficiencies and improve competitiveness
Again in 2014, investing in new technologies is a top strategy to increase efficiencies and competitiveness for the next five years. Globally, over the next three to five years, 80 per cent of respondents say they will invest in new technologies.