Tag - Encompass

Planning for Unexpected Supply Chain Disruptions

 Hurricanes in the Southeast. Blizzards in the Northeast. Tornadoes in the Midwest. Earthquakes and fires in the West. Natural disasters occur often and mostly without time for planning. Major transportation carriers and routes are usually impacted, which has an immediate, but mostly brief, effect on supply chain continuity.

But what about supply chain disruptions occurring continents away? As the world’s largest manufacturing country, China plays an extremely important role in U.S. commerce. When something momentous happens – like the coronavirus (or COVID-19) or the once looming trade war with the U.S. – effects typically domino across the globe.

Although it’s still somewhat early days, the COVID-19 crisis is already having a major impact on global trade and logistics with Chinese factory closings, workforce quarantines and transportation disruptions. The electronics industry is at particular risk with Shenzhen, a major hub of electronics and parts manufacturing, located about 700 miles from the epicenter of the virus outbreak. While some manufacturing factories have reopened, thousands of workers remain under quarantine or otherwise unable to travel to work.

The situation is mitigated somewhat by the fact that the initial outbreak coincided with the Chinese New Year during which most businesses shut down for about 10 days. Distributors like Encompass typically anticipate this downtime and plan accordingly to purchase extra safety stock. The question becomes whether the additional inventory will keep pace with demand until business returns to normal in China.

Current fulfillment lead times from Chinese factories are 30 days or more, so even the slightest delays could significantly affect supply and complicate purchasing strategies. What can supply chain managers do to try to limit the impact of global supply chain challenges – particularly those affecting the world’s largest manufacturing cluster? This is probably one of the hottest topics of discussion occurring in U.S. board rooms and purchasing departments across the country.

Whether your business is directly affected or not by the current crisis, it’s still an opportunity to review your purchasing strategy. Identify any weaknesses and determine contingencies as part of your overall purchasing strategy going forward. Here are some areas of consideration:

  • Sourcing Partners – Are all your supply sources in one basket – be it a single factory or geographic region? Assess the impact level to your business and customers of any unexpected, potentially lengthy supply disruptions from this source. Just like your financial portfolio, diversification is good. Consider alternatives for a backup supply pipeline in a different geographic area to help mitigate the risk of being cut off from your primary source without warning. For repair service businesses, this can be as simple as establishing accounts with multiple parts vendors for seamless transition if ever necessary. 
  • Safety Stock – Do you stock enough inventory to meet demand for an extended period of time? While purchasing managers are constantly pressured to keep inventory turning, it may be worth stocking at least some high-demand SKUs beyond ordinary levels — particularly if your business is at risk from limited supply sources.
  • Business Continuity Plan – Many business continuity plans are focused internally on steps a company will take to recover from its own unforeseen events. Downstream disruptions in the supply chain should be included in your overall business continuity strategy.  And put the onus on your sourcing partners to provide their detailed plan for business recovery.

While the U.S. and China have reached a trade agreement and COVID-19 is likely to be contained sooner than later, the risk of future impactful events remains as certain as ever.  Don’t forget COVID-19 is not without precedence; in the early 2000s it was the SARS epidemic wreaking havoc on global trade. Sadly, chances are pretty good this isn’t the last time we’ll be dealing with supply chain disruptions, but ensuring you have a Plan B should help minimize harmful consequences to your business and customers.

Regardless of any business impact, we can’t forget that at the core of this epidemic are human lives. Compared to so many people dying, delays in receiving the next generation smart phone seem meaningless.  Above all, we should be focusing on joining together to help all those affected through this horrific ordeal.

Encompass Opening New Facility in Greater Atlanta Area to Accommodate Record Business Growth  

Lawrenceville, Ga., February 3, 2020Encompass Supply Chain Solutions, Inc., a leading provider of replacement parts and supply chain services for a diverse range of product brands, today announced it is relocating its Service Operations group to help manage significant expansion within its repair parts business.

Encompass Service Operations, which comprises reverse logistics and depot repair functions, will move from Encompass’ headquarters and flagship warehouse and distribution center In the Greater Atlanta area to a new facility less than five miles away. The group mainly performs depot repairs on a variety of electronics on behalf of major retailers, manufacturers and extended warranty providers,  as well as manages several reverse logistics programs.

The new site – 3105 Sweetwater Road, Lawrenceville, Ga. – is expected to be open within the next 30 days and augments Encompass’ other distribution centers in Florida and Nevada.

“Encompass has been experiencing record transaction growth over the past three years driven largely by our diverse parts business, exclusive supply chain programs, and certain core customer segments that are unique to Encompass,” said Encompass President and CEO Robert Coolidge. “Moving the depot repair operation will free up space in our primary distribution facility needed to further increase our efficiency and productivity.”

Coolidge said the Service group will still have ready access to repair parts since the new location is only minutes away.

“This is an ideal solution to meet our space needs while still maintaining strong support to both Service and parts customers.”

About Encompass Supply Chain Solutions, Inc.

Formed in 1953, Encompass is one of the country’s largest suppliers of repair parts and accessories for products throughout the home. Encompass also offers complete parts supply chain management, 3PL, depot repair and reverse logistics service. In addition to consumers, we support an array of B2B customers, including manufacturers, multi-family property management, warranty providers, service networks, independent dealers and retailers.

For more information, please visit solutions.encompass.com and follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

CONTACT: Kristin Hurst, Director of Marketing & Communications

Comvest Leads Management-Backed Recapitalization of Encompass Supply Chain Solutions, Inc.



Robert Coolidge Named CEO

Encompass announced today that company President Robert Coolidge will assume the added role of Chief Executive Officer.

Coolidge was appointed President of Encompass in December, taking on the responsibility of managing the day-to-day operations of the entire company, including the Encompass Parts Distribution and Encompass Service Solutions divisions. With the addition of the CEO title, he replaces Robert (Bob) Gowens, who has moved to become an advisor to the Encompass Board of Directors.

“The Board thanks Bob for his leadership of Encompass over the past 18 months and is grateful to have him continuing in a stewardship role,” said Encompass Board Chairman Steve Glick. “We are equally grateful to have a President and CEO of Robert’s caliber. With decades of experience in supply chain management and a clear vision of how the company must evolve to meet ever-changing industry conditions, Robert has the skill and talent to successfully guide
Encompass into the future.”

Gowens added his congratulations to Coolidge on his appointment as CEO, stating “Robert is very deserving of this role. I’m confident he will serve the Company, the shareholders, and the
employees well. I wish him and Encompass all the best.”

In addition to operational and fiduciary responsibility for Encompass Supply Chain Solutions, Coolidge will remain President of the Encompass Parts Distribution division for which he has managed national sales, vendor relations and IT management and development.

“Having the opportunity to continue growing and enhancing Encompass to improve service to our customers and strengthen relationships with our business partners is extremely exciting to me,” said Coolidge. “We are always seeking innovative solutions to help our customers succeed, and I am committed to ensuring we stay on this course.”