Blog: Leonie BarrieWhy a balanced scorecard drives the best decisions

Leonie Barrie | 20 September 2018

Among the highlights on just-style last week, we offer advice on how to achieve a balanced scorecard to help supply chain managers make the best decisions around where in the world their garments are made, based on at least 10 factors ranging from cost to speed to market.

US apparel retailers and importers also expressed their fears around the latest proposal by US President Donald Trump to impose US$267bn of additional tariffs on Chinese products – pointing out such a move would be bad news for the sector and potentially lead to higher prices for consumers.

But garment manufacturing industry insiders in Haiti are optimistic that the sector can continue expanding in size, as long as the Caribbean country's government delivers economic and social stability.

While international garment buyers visiting Nicaragua on sourcing trips have been warned to take additional precautions because of the ongoing and escalating political unrest.

The Dominican Republic is letting a key provision to bolster its US exports run into expiration, deepening a 12-year rout that has seen its apparel sales to the world's biggest market halve, observers have told just-style.

And US apparel manufacturer HanesBrands says it has invested US$5.2m in new technology and staff in El Salvador in the last six months and plans to inject a further $5.2m in the Central American country by the New Year.

The Bangladesh Government has increased the minimum wage for garment workers by 51% following months of negotiations – but unions have responded with protests to reject what they call an "inhuman" wage.

However, as talks get underway to set a new minimum wage for Cambodian garment workers in 2019, new research suggests that far from weighing on employers' ability to pay overtime, an increase in the base wage appears to go hand-in-hand with longer working hours.

Brexit is looming. While the final arrangements between the UK and EU are yet to be hashed out, the UK Fashion & Textile Association says there are steps the industry can take now to prepare and minimise the impact on supply chains. Have a look at this top 10 checklist to see how ready your firm is for Brexit.

British retailer John Lewis & Partners saw a near 99% drop in group earnings for the first half of the year on the back of new shop openings and higher IT costs. Despite the glum result, analysts believe the company has an opportunity to create a streamlined multi-channel offering to cater to the way today's consumer now shops.

Meanwhile, in other news, apparel giant PVH Corp has been recognised for its role as lead investor in the apparel manufacturing facility at Hawassa in Ethiopia; Amazon has filed a series of trademarks for more clothing brands; two US firms are to scale up a new technology to help reduce synthetic microfibre pollution; and six Los Angeles based garment makers have been fined for labour law violations.

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