Supply Chain Disruptions Plague 85% of U.S. Businesses, Survey Finds

Blue Yonder's 2024 Supply Chain Executive Survey finds 84% of global businesses and 85% of US organizations faced supply chain disruptions in the past year. To address these challenges, companies are investing heavily in supply chain operations, with 79% increasing investments and prioritizing sustainability and AI-based technology.

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Supply Chain Disruptions Plague 85% of U.S. Businesses, Survey Finds

Supply Chain Disruptions Plague 85% of U.S. Businesses, Survey Finds

Supply chain disruptions remain a major challenge for businesses in the United States and globally, according to Blue Yonder's 2024 Supply Chain Executive Survey. The survey, which polled global supply chain executives on their experiences over the past year, found that 84% of global businesses and 85% of U.S. organizations faced supply chain disruptions.

Why this matters: The widespread impact of supply chain disruptions on businesses' bottom lines has significant implications for the overall economy, as decreased profit margins can lead to reduced investments and slower growth. Furthermore, the persistence of these disruptions can erode consumer trust and confidence in the ability of businesses to deliver goods and services efficiently.

These disruptions have taken a significant toll on companies' bottom lines. In the U.S., 60% of organizations reported decreased profit margins due to supply chain issues and inflation. Globally, 46% of executives said their profit margins fell amid rising costs, with transportation and material costs being the most commonly cited pain points.

The survey reveals that delays for customers were the most common impact of supply chain disruptions in the U.S., experienced by 43% of respondents. This is down from 52% a year ago and 58% in 2022, suggesting some improvement but still a persistent issue. Stalled production was another major consequence reported by 42% of organizations globally.

To address these challenges, companies are investing heavily in their supply chain operations. 79% of global organizations increased their supply chain investments, with 51% investing over $10 million. In the U.S., 49% of organizations invested more than $10 million, up from 38% in 2023 and just 24% in 2022.

Sustainability and artificial intelligence are two key focus areas for these investments. 48% of global organizations are investing in sustainability efforts, while 41% are prioritizing AI-based technology. Over half are applying AI to supply chain planning, transportation, and order management. 80% have implemented generative AI in their supply chains to some degree.

"Supply chain disruptions are still a major challenge for businesses," said Andrea Morgan Vandome, Blue Yonder's Chief Innovation Officer. "With a majority of global organizations reporting disruptions in the last year, it's clearer than ever that we need innovative technology solutions to respond to those disruptions and enable businesses to adapt with lasting resiliency."

Saskia van Gendt, Blue Yonder's Chief Sustainability Officer, noted the encouraging trend of increased sustainability investments in the U.S., which rose to 55% of executives in 2024, up from 42% in 2023 and 43% in 2022. "It's encouraging to see the upward trend of sustainability investment in the U.S. over the last two years," she said. "This trend is reflective of increased global demand for improved sustainability, especially in the U.S. where sustainability hasn't been as much of a key focus compared to other regions."

The Blue Yonder survey underscores the ongoing supply chain challenges facing businesses in 2024, as disruptions continue to impact operations and profitability. However, it also highlights the proactive investments companies are making in technology, sustainability, and resilience to navigate this complex landscape. As these efforts continue, the ability to mitigate disruptions and maintain efficient, sustainable supply chains will be a key differentiator for organizations globally.

Key Takeaways

  • 84% of global businesses and 85% of US organizations faced supply chain disruptions in 2023.
  • 60% of US organizations reported decreased profit margins due to supply chain issues and inflation.
  • Delays for customers were the most common impact of supply chain disruptions in the US (43% of respondents).
  • 79% of global organizations increased supply chain investments, with 51% investing over $10 million.
  • Sustainability and AI are key focus areas for supply chain investments, with 48% and 41% of organizations investing respectively.