Natural disasters may be unavoidable, but the global manufacturing supply chain can limit the impact of such calamities by sharpening rather than ignoring its "nose for trouble"--the sixth sense or perils avoidance system.
When catastrophes strike, as they have often done in the manufacturing world, the best and most efficient supply chain systems aren't always those with the most comprehensive or expensive disaster management programs. At such moments and afterward, industry executives celebrate the supply chain that most quietly continued to hum, seemingly panic-free and creating the illusion that the enterprise merely had been lucky to be spared the worst of the calamity unfolding around it.
What characterizes and separates such a supply chain from others? It's having people--usually top managers--who with experience have developed a finely honed sixth sense they use to forecast, anticipate, prepare for, shield, and even inoculate their companies against the havoc of natural and unnatural disasters. How can anyone predict and protect the enterprise against natural disasters? It may not be possible always to shield an enterprise from events such as the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, but with sixth sense awareness, a company's exposure could be severely limited. Click here to read the rest of this article on EDN.com.
I believe that planning succeeds better than just ESP. If you need parts, you always need to have at least two suppliers for each part and hopefully three or more. Why? Just for the reasons you stated. In a crunch, you need options. If you have a sorted list of suppliers, you can quickly find a replacement source for a while if your primary source experiences unexpected difficulties.
It is all about good risk management and planning.
Just my opinion.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.