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Page 153
Suggested Citation:"Bringing It Together." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2019. Freight Transportation Resilience in Response to Supply Chain Disruptions. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25463.
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Page 154
Suggested Citation:"Bringing It Together." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2019. Freight Transportation Resilience in Response to Supply Chain Disruptions. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25463.
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Page 154
Page 155
Suggested Citation:"Bringing It Together." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2019. Freight Transportation Resilience in Response to Supply Chain Disruptions. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25463.
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Page 155

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153 BRINGING IT TOGETHER The work up to this point in the self-assessment process must be captured for ACTION to motivate the short- and long-term enhancement of supply chain resilience. This action could be focused on how to improve how an organization is operating in any one step in the framework, OR it can be used to assess the overall performance of the organization in all aspects of enhancing supply chain/transportation system resilience. In this latter case, one could develop an overall score for the organization by simply summing the scores obtained for each step and comparing it to the following assessment scale. Step Maximum Points Score Need to Focus On This Step 1: Organize for Success 10 Step 2: Develop a Communications/Information Exchange Strategy 10 Step 3: Assess Current Practice 10 Step 4: Understand Hazards and Threats and Their Impacts/Consequences 10 Step 5: Develop Strategies, Actions and Plans 10 Step 6: Implement Strategies and Actions 10 Step 7: Monitor Performance and Incorporate into Assessing Current Practice 6 Score Organizational Assessment 53 – 66 Your organization is well-organized to provide more resilient supply chains, and should examine current processes and procedures to maintain or enhance efforts 33 – 52 Your organization is well-positioned to be better prepared to enhance the resilience of supply chains; additional steps are necessary to enhance organizational capacity. 10 0 - 32 Your organization needs new or enhanced organizational capacity to improve supply chain resilience An example…. Suppose a user of the guidance scored her organization in the following way: Step Maximum Points Score Need to Focus On This Step 1: Organize for Success 10 9 Step 2: Develop a Communications/Information Exchange Strategy 10 8 Step 3: Assess Current Practice 10 6 Step 4: Understand Hazards and Threats and Their Impacts/Consequences 10 3 X Step 5: Develop Strategies, Actions and Plans 10 8 Step 6: Implement Strategies and Actions 10 7 Step 7: Monitor Performance and Incorporate into Assessing Current Practice 6 2 X Total 66 43 From the assessment, it has been decided to focus on two areas—Steps 4 and 7—to improve the organization’s efforts at enhancing supply chain resilience (note that a third-party observer of this assessment might question how the organization has a high score on developing strategies, actions and plans without doing a good job of understanding hazards and threats. A likely explanation is the person doing the assessment is focused on incident response.

154 Given these two focus areas, the guidance user can then use the respective strategy table to identify what the organization can do better. As an example, for Step 4: Understanding Hazards and Threats, the guidance user filled out the strategy chart as follows: STEP 4: UNDERSTAND HAZARDS AND THREATS AND THEIR IMPACTS/CONSEQUENCES Yes, we should do this Your organization needs a better strategy ….. Conduct a comprehensive study of the potential hazards and threats (or review those that have been done by others in your market/service area) that will result in disruptions to the supply chain/transportation system and the implications to your organization's preparation, response and recovery efforts and other business operations. This might entail bringing in outside experts to brief key staff on future expected threats (e.g., extreme weather) or partnering with state or local agencies (such as universities). Identify organizational strategies for disruptions of different types and different lengths. For example, what will your organization do for a short disruption having very localized impacts versus a disruption that will last for weeks and affect a much larger area? What will your organization do if power is out for a week or more (and restoring power to your service is not the top priority of the power company given widespread public health and safety needs)? Examine your supply chain/markets/transportation system to identify possible vulnerabilities and risks to your networks and systems. To what extent does your organization have control over these vulnerabilities? What other infrastructure networks or systems does your infrastructure or service rely on that if disrupted would affect your organization’s operations, e.g.., the cascading effects of the electric power grid going down? X Make systematic and structured efforts to identify where network redundancy does NOT exist in your network such that disruptions in these network segments will likely have more significant impacts on the users of your system/service. Identify the most critical facilities, assets, intermodal connections, movements and/or corridors under your organization's control that require greater attention with respect to system vulnerability. X Examine expected economic and financial costs associated with a transportation system disruption, and strategies that can reduce financial and market loss. Examine the impacts of different types of disruptions to your work force and identify strategies for supporting employees during times of stress. Participate in a group (multi-stakeholder) exercise to identify the types of potential disruptions to the supply chain/transportation system and the resulting impacts. Include different system users in pre-disruption planning to understand their needs during a system disruption. X Understand the needs of impacted communities and possible organizational strategies for responding. X Conduct an assessment of the training and professional development needs for different types of hazards and threats of the staff responsible for enhancing supply chain/transportation system resilience. Examine what peer organizations are doing to identify best practice in identifying threats and hazards and their relationship to supply chain/system management efforts. Your organization is well-positioned, but ….. Based on the self-assessment, create a management responsibility for improving your organization’s current approach to identifying threats and hazards and the consequences to organization practices. If necessary or desired, bring in a third party to identify possible strategies for enhancing your X

155 organization’s planning and threat awareness efforts. Modify your processes and procedures for identifying threats and hazards after incidents based on lessons learned or from incidents that happened elsewhere but whose impacts and consequences are known. Keep up to date on the latest information regarding transportation system threats and on strategies being applied to lower risks. X Update your organization’s training programs to reflect new threats and hazards that might affect the resilience of the supply chain/transportation system. X Your organization has done a good job …. efforts should be made to maintain or enhance these efforts …. Reassess (internally and/or with outside participants) on a periodic basis your organization’s threat assessment relating to enhancing supply chain resilience (perhaps conduct a threat assessment with supply chain partners on a periodic basis). Monitor the performance of your organization in response to incidents and examine what was new about the incident profile that needs to be incorporated into better response and recovery efforts in the future. Examine the remaining steps in the self-assessment framework and determine where value-added efforts need to be made to enhance supply chain resilience. Note that even though the organization was scored in the “Your organization is well-positioned, but…..” category the guidance user identified some steps in the lower classification that she felt were important for her organization. By using the guidance in this way, an organization can identify systematically where gaps currently exist in their efforts to enhance supply chain/transportation system resilience. Each organization may usefully collect a set of scores from a number of employees, perhaps involved in different aspects of an agency’ s or firm’s supply chain/ transportation logistics/ planning and management activities. Comparisons between respondents’ responses may either confirm existing strengths and weaknesses or identify possible topics for further internal discussion and clarification. Similarly, comparisons of the specific weaknesses recorded by different (private and public) agencies may prove useful in identifying areas where additional inter- agency coordination is worth pursuing. A periodic one-page summary of the assessment could be prepared for the executive level and supply chain partners to highlight the successful efforts to reduce the duration of supply chain disruptions and to identify next steps. Once initiated, the assessment process will need to be refreshed on a routine basis, including executive level commitment. Users of this guidance are encouraged to review the final report for this project to identify additional considerations for supply chain resilience.

Freight Transportation Resilience in Response to Supply Chain Disruptions Get This Book
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TRB’s National Cooperative Freight Research Program (NCFRP) has released a pre-publication version of Research Report 39: Freight Transportation Resilience in Response to Supply Chain Disruptions. The report provides guidance to public and private stakeholders on mitigating and adapting to logistical disruptions to supply chains resulting from regional, multi-regional, and national adverse events, both unanticipated and anticipated.

The report, which makes a significant contribution to the body of knowledge on freight transportation and system resiliency:

(1) assesses research, practices, and innovative approaches in the United States and other countries related to improving freight transportation resiliency;

(2) explores strategies to build relationships that result in effective communication, coordination, and cooperation among affected parties;

(3) identifies factors affecting resiliency;

(4) analyzes potential mitigation measures;

(5) characterizes spatial and temporal scale considerations such as emergency planning and response timeframes;

(6) prioritizes response activities by cargo types, recipients, and suppliers;

(7) identifies potential barriers and gaps such as political boundaries, authorities, ownership, modal competition and connectivity, and social and environmental constraints; and

(8) examines the dynamics of supply chain responses to system disruptions.

The report also includes a self-assessment tool that allows users to identify the current capability of their organization and institutional collaboration in preparing for and responding to supply chain disruptions.

Disruptions to the supply chain and their aftermath can have serious implications for both public agencies and companies. When significant cargo delays or diversions occur, the issues facing the public sector can be profound.

Agencies must gauge the potential impact of adverse events on their transportation system, economy, community, and the resources necessary for preventive and remedial actions, even though the emergency could be thousands of miles away.

Increasing temporary or short-term cargo-handling capacity may involve a combination of regulatory, informational, and physical infrastructure actions, as well as coordination across jurisdictional boundaries and between transportation providers and their customers.

For companies, concerns can include such issues as ensuring employee safety, supporting local community health, maintaining customer relationships when products and goods are delayed, and ultimately preserving the financial standing of the company.

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