Key considerations when choosing a pharmaceutical raw material sourcing partner in 2022

Key considerations when choosing a pharmaceutical raw material sourcing partner in 2022

Paul Power, Strategic Sourcing & Supply Chain Executive, discusses key considerations that a pharmaceutical organisation should consider when choosing a sourcing partner in 2022.

War, trade barriers and political instability, as well as rising inflation have created a very challenging environment for global supply chains. More than ever when it comes to sourcing raw materials for pharmaceutical manufacturing it is essential for organisations to work with the most reliable and reputable partners. With that in mind, below are some key considerations that a pharmaceutical manufacturer should consider when choosing a raw material sourcing partner.

Safety stock buffer

A safety stock buffer is a cushion to absorb the impact if there is a delay in the supply chain or a major disruption such a regional lockdown or even war. For pharmaceutical manufactures it is now essential to avoid production downtime by having safety stock managed and always available. When choosing a sourcing partner, it is vital that they provide a dedicated team to oversee and manage all aspects of the safety stock. This includes safety stock reports issued regularly, highlighting each material in stock, its quantity, or any material in transit and its current location. In addition, they should provide market information on each material supplied as well as strategies to keep risk to a minimum. We can manage these buffers for you, in an accredited warehouse, freeing up storage space in your site, while keeping material close and accessible as it is required.

Integrated supply chain

Though it is commonplace for sourcing partners to have a fully integrated supply chain, there are significant differences when it comes to approaches and the actual management of the supply chain. To clarify further, it is not enough ensuring that the right product is delivered at the right time. It is important that a sourcing partner understands their customers goals and has the ability to deliver the right product at any time. This can only be achieved by analysing the vulnerabilities associated with specific supply chains and secondly working towards solutions that ensure a reduced impact to production when something unexpected goes wrong. Its moving from the risks of “just in time” to the comfort of “just in case”.

In-house quality and compliance department

As compliance and regulations become more complex it is important that a sourcing partner not only has an in-house quality and compliance department but that it is consistently keeping up to date with all regulations, regardless of whether that is REACH or UK REACH. In addition, it is vital that an in-house quality and compliance department conducts background checks on all raw material manufactures.

Built in supply chain resilience as standard

The world is a very different place than it was three years ago, the market turbulence that currently exists is unfortunately the new normal for the foreseeable future. With that in mind, sourcing partners need to offer supply chain resilience as standard. When choosing a souring partner for your pharmaceutical materials they should be able to provide supply chain strategies and approaches that lower the risks of bottlenecks and emerging logistical and supply challenges. With medium to high-risk materials on the other hand we improve resilience by having secondary sources lined up and additional managed stock to hand. Taking this perspective reduces the risk and most importantly the associated costs.

Utilising the right supplier for your pharmaceutical raw materials can make or break your business

In a recent NCC pharmaceutical customer survey (April 2022) 87% of customers either agreed or strongly agreed that NCC’s sourcing expertise is excellent and rates better than competitors. If you are looking for a reputable and reliable pharmaceutical raw material sourcing partner, then we can assist. We provide our customers with integrated end-to-end supply chain solutions that has resilience built in as standard. By optimising the efficiency of your supply chain, we can save your organisation time, money, resources and remove the risk of production downtime.

We can assist your business with:

  • Global supply chain management – experienced in building secure long-term transcontinental supply chains
  • Researching of alternative sources, secondary sources & pre-validation of proposed novel supply routes
  • Multi-location sourcing
  • Regulation expertise
  • Logistic flexibility
  • Managed temporary and long-term storage
  • Supply chain risk evaluation
  • Comprehensive change control support throughout the supply chain
  • Management and coordination of external service providers as required

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