Where are you, Compliance?

For the majority of 2018, there haven’t been too many new regulations that have impacted the import/export processes in the United States, as a whole. What we did experience, however, were numerous changes to current processes, and they have hit the front pages of newspapers and online publications. Yes, I’m talking about tariffs.

During our Supply Chain Summit in Houston, TX last week, we polled the audience (comprised of supply chain professionals from various industries) on specific work impacts in 2018, and what potential impacts they foresee coming in 2019.

The collected results told quite a story about the current state of business affairs for our audience. When asked about Free Trade Agreements and the most recent punitive tariffs that are currently in effect, our respondents confirmed that work surrounding FTAs has increased in 2018, and will continue to increase in 2019.

While this was a particularly significant detail, 73% of attendees ranked the importance of FTAs as “very important” as related to recent tariffs, even though we have no new FTAs in the US.

83% of respondents answered that compliance has taken on a bigger role within their companies, and must be involved with decision making.

What does this mean for supply chains? Well, it’s a work in progress, but our polling results show that there are many more questions that need to be answered, as the tariffs aren’t going away anytime soon.

To that I say, where are you, Compliance? As you can see from the collected results, compliance teams have been working on many new issues that are impacting the supply chains and we heard a strong statement from the audience that their compliance teams are invaluable and need to be sitting at the table of decision.