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Impact of the Disasters in Japan on the U.S. Manufacturing Supply Chain


Deloitte conducted a survey among supply chain professionals and CFOs of Japanese companies to gather objective and anecdotal information about the impact of the disasters in Japan on the global supply chain for manufacturers. The profile of survey respondents includes a cross section of leadership roles in multiple functions across virtually all manufacturing sectors.

In this point of view, we examine key issues on near-term and long-term impacts of the disasters in Japan. For survey respondents, the primary concerns for resuming normal operations include the following:

  • Deliveries of components from manufacturers in Japan
  • Transplants returning to normal volumes
  • Resumption of production by deeper tier suppliers, especially for micro-processors and electronic components

These concerns are likely rooted in a number of issues that impacted multiple industries after the disasters. Although it is impossible to predict which crisis will occur next, it is possible to prepare. Manufacturers can employ a number of strategies to prepare for and react to these events:

  • Designate teams empowered to expedite qualification of alternate sources of supply
  • Assign teams to use data to engage in rigorous scenario simulations
  • Develop a playbook for higher likelihood or higher risk scenarios
  • Confirm that data to facilitate appropriate rapid response is readily available

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