Reuters: Massive Challenges Facing European Supply Chains
November 23, 2021
better understand the state of European supply chains, Reuters surveyed
over 450 supply chain leaders across the continent, with particular
emphasis on the United Kingdom, Germany and the Netherlands. The
responses represent a broad perspective of the concerns and challenges
surrounding European supply chains, sustainability and the role of
real-time visibility in streamlining operations.
Over half of all respondents are currently using supply chain visibility solutions, but one-third (33%) are having trouble improving data-driven processes such as forecasting, receiving operations and labour.
The majority of respondents (67%) cited end-to-end freight traceability as their biggest pain point when transporting goods.
More than half of respondents (63%) cited carriers providing inaccurate ETAs as a persistent problem.
“If we have visibility, we can be efficient and flexible,” said Ferenc
Polgar, Global Distribution Operational Excellence Lead at Bayer. “We
can communicate delays to our customers so they can adjust their
operations and improve their experience. We can be more effective during
peak distribution periods to make sure plans are going accordingly.”
Looking at their three biggest pain points in transporting goods,
respondents from the UK, Germany and the Netherlands had surprisingly
In the Netherlands, 75% of retailers and manufacturers said their biggest pain point was carrier relationships.
In Germany, 100% of respondents were struggling with ensuring end-to-end freight traceability.
Overall, respondents indicated supply chain visibility improved their
planning and inventory management (60%), customer service (56%) and
increased efficiency (38%). In the Netherlands, 40% saw an improvement
to customer service whereas in Germany that number was even higher at
100%. Meanwhile, in the UK 63% said that improved planning and inventory
management is the primary benefit of visibility.
survey illustrates that sustainability is top of mind for today’s supply
chain leaders. Over 80% indicated that they were either holding steady
(44%) or increasing (40%) their commitment to sustainability,
emphasising the urgency with which businesses understand they are
required to act.