Nissan’s Recovery from the Japan Earthquake

A Wall Street Journal article (April 8,2011) describes how Nissan rallied after the Japan earthquake to restore its supply chain. Immediately after the quake, the disaster team took stock of the supply chain and, in one hour, got a read of parts supply.  The key discovery was that the smallest firms, third or fourth tier, were the choke points.  The port of Yokohama had stored inbound and outbound parts and products – this port was back in action in 48 hours.  Balancing part requirements across world wide plants then became the key – with limited email and cell phone access.  One month later, Nissan’s Japanese plants are working, while other plants worldwide are idled.  How should a company balance its global supply chain impact of part disruptions ? Should global backup supplies for the fragile smaller suppliers be part of a supply chain strategy ?  Given the importance of data and communications, and the correlated disruptions of this part of a supply chain during a disaster, should physical co-location be a strategy to gather information to restore a supply chain ?

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About aviyer2010

Professor
This entry was posted in Collaboration, Global Contexts, Operations Management, Supply Chain Issues and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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