Best Practices in Asset Recovery for High-Tech Supply Chains
High-tech and electronics manufacturers are realizing that it's more important than ever to get control of their reverse logistics processes. They're becoming acutely aware of the value to be derived from recovering, reusing, and responsibly disposing of used products, components, and raw materials. Tighter regulations and growing environmental concerns are forcing manufacturers to act. Yet the adoption of an efficient asset-recovery program can also yield huge benefits to the corporate bottom line. Extracting the full value from high-tech asset recovery is no easy task, however. The elements of a reverse supply chain are often scattered geographically and controlled by multiple parties that don't communicate with one another. So it's vital that companies take the initial step of integrating key processes. That means treating the forward and reverse supply chains as aspects of one continuous flow of both finished goods and components. A holistic approach will link the traditional "forward" tasks of assembly (including elements such as kitting, co-packing, and configuration) with key activities related to a product's return. recovery, redeployment, resale, and recycling of materials, in line with regulations as well as local legislation. However, the conversation needs to go well beyond a question of compliance. Five stages of GAR GAR is actually a five-stage process:
- Evaluation of the opportunity, consisting of initial analysis and asset valuation;
- Recovery, including de-installation, logistics, sortation, and inspection;
- Inventory management, involving asset tracking, handling, and storage to ensure full visibility of recovered assets;
- Product evaluation, including redeployment, resale, and recycling whenever possible,
- And reporting, with complete lifecycle analyses, audit trails, and details of environmental compliance.