“… the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to increase consolidation and fragmentation in the defense manufacturing industry…” ~ army-technology.com

“Months of commerce-crushing lockdown, followed by a deeply fragmented exit from the acute phase of the pandemic, will continue to wreak havoc on supply chains.”~ controlrisks.com

Components & Employees: Unsuspecting Musical Chairs

COVID-19 created more than a never-ending list of absentees, as one employee after another quarantined as abruptly and unpredictably as those running for a seat when the music stops in a game of musical chairs. On top of operating months on end without a full workforce, COVID-19 forced manufacturers to acknowledge supply chains’ fragility.

Products rarely come together entirely under one roof. Components of a final product fly in from multiple locations, which is why manufacturers closing down thousands of miles away to deal with COVID-19 created a ripple effect that delivered a decisive blow to manufacturers who depend on those closed manufacturers’ products. When COVID-19 hit manufacturers, manufacturers’ supply chains rattled as companies scrambled to obtain all the components needed for their product and keep their employees on the payroll.

Small Manufacturers Answer the Call

The fragility of supply chains casts a spotlight on small manufacturers–those known to be more flexible than larger companies. As the defense industry aims to curb and conquer the effects of COVID-19, sights narrow in on small manufacturers like Auto-Valve, Inc. (AVI).

AVI meets client needs with their in-house CNC machining, engineering test facilities, design to print and their part, fixture, and tooling design capabilities. Auto-Valve, Inc. answers the call and surpasses expectations for, as an example, high-demand electro-mechanical systems and subsystems, such as servo valves and solenoid valves. AVI is an exceptional example of small manufacturers’ ability to pivot, adapt, and surpass client expectations faster than larger manufacturers.

As a piece entitled Managing the impact of COVID-19 on India’s supply chains– Now, Next and Beyond eloquently said, “History will remember the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as one of the biggest black swan events.” The unpredictability and consequence-filled nature of COVID-19 makes one thing clear: Now is the time for the defense industry to identify gaps in supply chains and utilize small manufacturers ready and able to address needs and issues in quick, creative, and innovative ways.

Author: Evelyn Lindell