Challenges in the Global Steel Supply Chain

Industry across the globe is evolving and changing and companies are either leading the charge or they’re getting left behind in the evolution of manufacture, supply and logistics. One of the industries particularly affected by this change is the steel industry, who are hit with many challenges in the modern era, including the increasing pressure to go green, innovate to prevent oversupply, and decreasing ever rising production costs. 

Royalty Free Photo

Many steel manufacturing companies are heading back to the drawing board to come up with better and more innovative ways to operate.

Better Customer Engagement

It’s a sign of the times in many different industries that big companies and manufacturers are increasing the perceived value of directly interfacing with their customers and spending more time engaging directly with their end users. The days of using a middleman to sell your product might be reaching an end. By engaging directly with customers, steel manufacturers are able to get a much better understanding of the needs and wants and ultimately developing a betting value added service for the actual consumers of their goods. By not relying on these intermediary companies, manufacturers also stand to differentiate themselves from their competition. 

The effect of this can be seen in the increase of strategic partnerships and joint ventures too, particularly when it means that there’s an advantage in the time of supply. Geographically advantageous partnerships are an excellent example of this.

Spending Less and Getting More Out of Research and Development

There’s a large cost in developing new processes and strategies, and companies like The Federal Group USA are working hard at getting more value from their research and development. Much of the money being spent in this area is focusing on minimizing costs of manufacture and optimizing existing processes to get the most out of their business expenses. Because of the pressures of sustainability and energy supply challenges, the steel industry is constantly looking to minimize the energy used in the manufacturing process, and that requires a strong and effective research and development strategy.

Embracing the Recycling Industry

Already, the steel manufacturing industry is considered one of the most efficient at recycling the products and waste products generated during the manufacture of steel. This is largely because there is a significant amount of money to be made in the efficient embrace of recycling practices. Some studies put the recovery at over 90%. This doesn’t mean that the innovation in recycling is slowing down in the industry, however. Significant time and money continue to be spent in improving the way waste is used and reducing things like greenhouse gases in the manufacturing process.

In a world where there is so much emphasis on going green and sustainability, the methods used in the manufacture and production of steel and steel products has a sharp need to innovate and improve. By leveraging on the strategies laid out here, these companies are on the right track to become successful and well positioned to be strong players in an already challenging market.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.