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Resolve Supply Chain Challenges in MedTech with Contract Intelligence

May 4,2022

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Supply Chain Disruptions in the Face of Covid-19 Pandemic

In the last two years, we have seen healthcare systems massively ravaged by the scourge of the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic created unprecedented demand for medical supplies , healthcare workers, and the like, and as the need for personnel and resources multiplied, so did the challenges facing us. Globally, there was a shortage of essential protective equipment, medical consumables, and more. These problems multiplied as logistical issues came up, making it necessary to reduce cost , accelerate deliverables, and improve supply chain management.

According to a Jabil survey , less than 10% of companies across seven industries had any sort of predictive supply chain management plan before the pandemic. As the severity and complexity of the pandemic dawned upon industries, it became clear that they needed to have long-term solutions to tackle future catastrophes. The need of the hour was not just ground-breaking innovations but also efficient supply chain management.

MedTech Companies and Their Supply Chain Management

Since 2020, MedTech companies have realized the importance of investing in digital well-being, remote healthcare monitoring, and virtual care. As the pandemic grew and its effects became more far-reaching, MedTech companies were forced to accelerate their supply chain management to fast-track deliveries.

In order to meet increased demands, the MedTech industry had to reimagine the supply chain altogether, acknowledging the weaknesses underlying basic supply chain infrastructures. As numerous vulnerabilities surfaced, it became evident that addressing supply chain issues must assume paramount importance.

According to a McKinsey Global Institute study , if disruptions continue to threaten the MedTech value chain, companies could lose approximately 38% of their year’s earnings within ten years. Without addressing supply chain inefficiencies, companies cannot protect themselves against these shocks.

Role Compliance Plays in Efficient Supply Chain Management

These past few years have shown that unless MedTech companies successfully navigate their complex supply chain issues, new challenges will continue to harm their progress. Ignoring Regulations—both new and old—only exacerbate these issues. Companies have realized that adhering to regulatory requirements (FDA controls, MDR) must be consistent at every step.

Supply chain management is already complex, and the growing need to reconfigure existing systems deepens that complexity even further. Going forward, meeting compliance may become difficult, but undoubtedly necessary. It will take time to obtain supplier qualifications or onboard new suppliers, but regulation and constant compliance will continue to pave the way. In the European markets, for example, MedTech companies must now adhere to the European Medical Device Regulation (MDR). This new regulation compels companies to provide regulatory documents at every level and to continuously meet lifecycle and labeling requirements. The MDR is much more complex than previous regulations in the EU, requiring companies to constantly keep their compliance documents updated to ensure safe device usage.

At the same time, the FDA in the United States is continuously pressing for reforms that are affecting new device procurement, use of software, and use of medical devices. With such constant added pressures—not even considering existing supply chain complexities—meeting market demands has become increasingly challenging. In light of all these challenges, it has become difficult for MedTech companies to be as flexible as they might like.

Contract Intelligence – Easing Supply Chain Data

The only way to navigate these challenges is by constantly updating contracts. Contracts power relationships between MedTech companies and their suppliers, defining adherence to everything from NDAs to long-term strategic agreements. In a time when dynamics change day-to-day, companies are only as good as their contracts; so, it has become necessary to update contacts every time a new agreement or a new relationship is made.

Following traditional contract management systems will only slow down MedTech companies’ procurement and delivery process. Managing contracts manually can bog down supplier onboarding, reducing efficiency and lengthening the contracting process. Automating the contracting processes can expedite the process and free up time for more important business. This is where Contract Intelligence comes in.

It has become evident that in these trying times, to navigate supply-chain instabilities, companies must onboarding vendors quickly. However, companies cannot give the green signal until necessary contracts are signed. Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) has long been considered an important technology in this process, but its significance and value have only been realized during the pandemic years.

A comprehensive CLM in place allows MedTech companies to easily address the twin pressures of supply chain compliance and agility.

Contract Intelligence helps streamline source-to-contract processes, adding value, maneuverability, and speed to the compliance process. Establishing intelligent guardrails and rules along the way makes it easy for MedTech companies to configure sourcing processes. MedTech companies can keep their engagement with every new vendor regulated using a CLM. Furthermore, businesses can make comprehensive assessments about risk requirements and pricing as contracts are planned, all at a super-fast speed. Using a CLM, the supplier onboarding process can be ironed out in no time. Contract Intelligence gives MedTech companies the scope to expand their network and consolidate their assets, remaining strong through the challenges of supply chain complexities.

CommerceCX has been reinventing the buying experience for MedTech companies so that you can progress ahead without hiccups or roadblocks. Incorporating a key focus on automation, our CLM helps to:

If you are looking for a partnership to strengthen your CLM processes through Contract Intelligence, get in touch with us today. We will walk you through our Conga Suite, Salesforce Platform so that your sales processes can be easily streamlined.

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