Already backed by the consolidated collaboration with suppliers and customers, Sabaf faces the challenge of the provisioning of raw materials and of material staking on values like resilience and flexibility.
2023 promises to be full of challenges, starting from a theme of vital importance for whatever enterprise such as, above all, the use and the management of raw materials and of materials. Covid first, and now the Russian-Ukraine conflict are changing world balances, with considerable repercussions on international supply chains. A company like Sabaf, accustomed to playing on international tables, has certainly not been caught unprepared by new scenarios, thanks to its consolidated global expertise.
«Sabaf is succeeding in overcoming the global supply chain crisis due to consolidated relationships along the supply chain, based on transparency, ethics and mutual support in the critical times of any link, both present and past», explains Andrea Bonfadelli, Supply Chain Manager, Sabaf S.p.A. «Historically, we have at least two provisioning sources for almost all materials, mainly within the Nation where manufacturing sites are headquartered».
In this way, Sabaf can deal with any kind of scenario, even the most complex, with prompt response times. «In case of highly critical supplies, we have reacted in time by increasing the coverage levels or by working in collaboration with suppliers to help them in their provisioning chain and in the sourcing of their raw materials», Bonfadelli underlines.
Collaboration and support are the key words also concerning the relationship with customers, as well as with suppliers. «We have always provided customers with updated information about the status of main global shortages, deciding together where to use the available resources to grant always the continuity of their productions», Bonfadelli highlights.
Diversifying the chain
Certainly, the new scenarios have induced Sabaf to update simultaneously some aspects of its provisioning and management policies of raw materials and of materials. «In general, we have increased the awareness of the importance of a shorter diversified supply chain and of the sustainability connected with this concept», Bonfadelli comments.
Going into the detail, Sabaf has interpreted the market’s rising requirements by offering different solutions according to the various typologies of products or sectors. In this way, the company intended to grant that flexibility and that versatility today so appreciated by a larger and larger number of customers.
«In the case of microprocessors, one of the main shortages of these two years, we have changed manufacturers and we have redesigned a large number of electronic boards to use more brands and to be less subjected to availability constraints», Bonfadelli tells. «In the case of raw materials, in the period of extreme provisioning difficulty, we have worked to be able to use alternative materials coming from secondary sources (scraps) instead of from primary ones. Granting, obviously, the same performance of our components and improving the environmental impact».
A lean fast organization
For the next future, Sabaf proves they have clear ideas about the strategies to be implemented to go on facing the challenge of the provisioning of raw materials and of materials in a winning way. Actually, the alternatives and the trump cards currently at enterprises’ disposal can be different, from the choice of using new materials up to the decision of implementing new manufacturing paradigms, for instance in conformity with the smart factory scenario. What routes will Sabaf follow, then, in the troubled waters of today’s supply chains?
«In these three years scenarios have changed, with six/eight months horizon: pandemic, markets’ lockdown, sudden restart, excess of demand, haywire world logistics, strong inflation, energy crisis, war and market slowdown», Bonfadelli affirms. «Concerning the supply chain, we believe that, instead of trying making forecasts, it is more efficacious to rely on Sabaf Group’s lean, flexible, coordinate and fast organization in suiting the emerging situations, with an information system that constantly monitors workloads and plants’ saturations, current stocks and the future provisioning in relation to the demand».
That is not all, Sabaf’s vision is becoming more and more refined and attentive to details: nothing can and must be neglected. «Moreover», Bonfadelli points out, «it is fundamental to go on assessing the stability of each link of the supply chain also in financial terms, especially in this time when the stability of margins might be put to hard test».
In its whole, this strategy has a well precise goal, making Sabaf ready to deal with whatever market condition, even the stormiest, always assuring the highest soundness and reliability. «The target», Bonfadelli ends, «is becoming, through all difficulties we have faced and we will face, a resilient and “antifragile” organization».