Digitising Supply Chains for Due Diligence & Trade

Brent Dawkins, Product Marketing Director at QAD, discusses digital due diligence & why manufacturers must prioritise compliance in today's trade landscape

Brent Dawkins is the Director of Product Marketing at QAD, a software development company QAD, which is a provider of manufacturing and supply chain solutions in the cloud. Founded in 1979, in Santa Barbara, California, QAD helps its customers face disruptions in the supply chain. 

With an abundance of global due diligence legislation at the forefront this year, high profile elections and disruptions - like the ones occurring in the Red Sea - this year is sure to be one with many shipping and trade challenges. 

“Businesses have to be aware of compliance issues or face some serious consequences, and not just financially,” says Brent.

Here, he tells us more about supply chain strategies and what manufacturers can do to ensure due diligence and trade compliance. 

Brent Dawkins, Director of Product Marketing at QAD

What should businesses do to avoid infringing on global due diligence legislation in their supply chains?

“To avoid any infractions, businesses should intelligently select suppliers and implement robust risk assessment processes. Conducting thorough supplier audits, ensuring transparency, and assessing potential human rights, environmental and ethical risks are crucial steps. Establishing clear policies and codes of conduct for suppliers, with enforceable consequences for non-compliance, helps maintain accountability. Regular monitoring, engagement with stakeholders and collaboration with industry peers enhance vigilance and responsiveness. Adopting technology for real-time tracking and reporting facilitates compliance. Lastly, fostering a culture of corporate social responsibility and promoting ethical practices across the supply chain is essential for businesses to navigate the complexities of global due diligence legislation successfully.”

Will a business’s current supply chain strategies be enough for due diligence and trade compliance? 

“Many businesses continue to opt for traditional supply chain management, however this method is prone to human errors because it relies on manual processes, multiple supply chain partners and involves a lot of paperwork. For businesses that want to participate in global trade, this type of supply chain management would make tasks such as product origin tracing and addressing trade regulations difficult to manage.”

What can organisations and businesses do to ensure due diligence and trade compliance? 

“To keep up with today’s complex supply chains, businesses should consider digitising their supply chain by implementing global trade software - and effectively addressing the processes and the people involved. Global trade software automates an organisation’s time-consuming and difficult supply chain processes and stays up to date on governmental policies and trade regulations. The right global trade solution would have features such as import and export management, supplier management, compliance analytics, foreign trade zone (FTZ) report filing and auditing and more. Along with process optimisation and making it easier for people to do their job.”

What are the benefits of digitising supply chain processes? 

“Organisations that digitise their supply chains receive more than just new technology. These businesses are gaining a solution that will mitigate risks by enhancing visibility and transparency throughout its supply chain and improve its efficiency by automating tedious tasks like documentation, tracking and customs compliance. 

“Additionally, businesses can make more informed decisions and remain compliant to trade regulations. Companies who take advantage of a global trade solution will be able to remain competitive in today’s complex global marketplace.”


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