Our supply chain operations experienced a number of challenges during 2022, with supply shortages, disruption due to the war in Ukraine, and the effects and costs of inflation. Here, COO Martijn Bonte and Project Manager Supply Chain Just Reinke discuss supply chain resilience and optimisation. 

Martijn Bonte
Just Reinke

Managed challenges

“We managed these challenges well,” Martijn says. “These challenges confirmed our decision to focus on strong customer service, and more scalable cost and working capital structures. Inflation is a global problem, but it’s our responsibility to counteract its effects by being more productive and efficient, by shipping less air in our trucks, using less packaging material, and investing in solar panels for warehouse roofs.” 

Warehouse optimisation is key

“The challenges of 2022 showed us the need to continuously optimise operations to keep cost low, and support rapid growth. In order to support this, we’ve brought forward investments,” Martijn continues.  

Among these investments was the 2022 extension and optimisation of our Poitiers (FR) warehouse. “Our goal was to create a futureproof warehouse that could handle the rapid growth we are experiencing,” explains Just. “At the same time, we set out to optimise the internal warehouse operations to reduce costs, by bringing related activities closer together to minimise movements that doesn’t add value. The efforts of our people and suppliers, and their willingness to go the extra mile, made sure that even in a turbulent time, ensured a successful project.” 

“The warehouse in Poitiers is only one of 12 Kramp warehouses. Such an extensive footprint means Kramp continuously needs to optimise these warehouses and the network that surrounds them. Our 12 warehouses don’t just hold stock; they play a crucial role in our supply chain network; for instance, they act as internal distribution points to optimise supplier and customer deliveries. These optimisations will continue during 2023: our main focus is on improving our Dutch and Danish warehouses, and finding ways to improve service and reduce costs in our distribution network.” 

“Supply chain technology integrations are a vital focus for the future too.”

The pillars of a sustainable, stable supply chain

“The basis of everything we do is serving our customers as best we can, and better than our competitors. It’s a pillar we’ve built, should cherish and continuously improve,” Martijn asserts. “That’s why we are actively enhancing our forecasting, stock management, and sales and operations planning. Greater predictability will allow us to staff warehouses more efficiently, adjust forecasts for carriers, adjust purchase volumes, know where to allocate project finances and so on.  

“Technology is another pillar. We will be phasing out legacy systems and at the same time refining our business processes for our new systems so we serve our customers better; supply chain technology integrations, too, are a vital focus for the future.” 

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