Designing Responsive Supply Chains Business Essay

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The main objective of designing efficient supply chain is cost minimization and better asset utilization. Several essential features are necessary to achieve this objective. To achieve this, long term relationships need to be developed with the suppliers who should be involved in joint cost reduction initiatives, value engineering programmes and process improvement. efforts Likewise, it is important to invest in long-term relationship with the entities in the out-bound supply chain and improve efficiency in the transportation.

Because the demand is likely to exist for longer time, continuous replenishment inventory systems should be resorted to. Efficient information sharing across the supply-chain.is very essential. Developing robust inventory control models to accurately fix the reorder point and order levels are important to ensure efficient supply chains. Integrating material planning and control systems using company-wide information systems ,like the ERP, is costly but essential for efficient supply chains.

Designing Responsive Supply Chains

Responsive supply chains need to be designed because of uncertainty in demand and large forecast errors . Moreover, developing systems to quickly meet the demand when the demand is uncertain highly essential. Capturing point of sale data and immediately updating the centralized planning system using EDI and Internet linkages is an important operational feature of responsive supply chains. Cutting down lead time by drastically redesigning business processes pertaining to various components of the supply chain is also a key requirement. Recently, newer strategies related to postponement have been devised to address the twin problems of customization, increased variety and longer lead time. In a postponement strategy, variety creation is postponed as much as possible to the point of consumption. Mass customization is developing as a very useful business strategy

Firms selling innovative products practice tactics of postponement. In one method, the company delays the final packaging until the point of consumption of the product. In assembly postponement standardized sub-components are kept ready and the product is assembled to order just in time. Dell Computers .follow the strategy of eliminating the distributor and the retailer to reduce the delivery lead time. In the case of manufacturing postponement, the final stage of manufacturing is delayed until the point of consumption. Other strategies employed in configuring and efficient supply chain include changes in product design. Developing standardization, use of modular design provides several examples of these.

Efficient Versus Responsive Supply Chains

Even though extensive technologies such as EDI, the Internet, computer-assisted design, flexible manufacturing, and automated warehousing have been applied to all stages to of the supply chain, the performance of many supply chains has been unsatisfactory.

The nature of demand for the firm's products or services is a key factor in the best choice of supply-chain design. Efficient supply chains work best in environments where demand is highly predictable, such as demand for staple items purchased at grocery stores or demand for a package delivery service. The focus of the supply chain is on the efficient flows of markets the firms serve, product or service designs last a long time, new introductions are infrequent, and variety is small. Such firms typically produce for markets in which price is crucial to winning an order; therefore contribution margins are low and efficiency is important. Consequently, the firms' competitive priorities are low-cost operations, consistent quality, and on-time delivery.

Responsive supply chains work best when firms offer a great variety of products or services and demand is low and uncertain and the stakes are high. The firms may not know what products or services they need to provide until customers place orders. In addition, demand may be short-lived, as in the case of fashion goods. The focus of responsive supply chains is minimum lead time so as to avoid keeping costly inventories that ultimately must be sold at high discounts. Such is the operating environment of mass customizers or firms utilizing the assemble-to-order operations strategy . To be competitive, such firms must frequently introduce new products or services. Nonetheless, because of the innovativeness of their products or services, these firms enjoy high contribution margins. Typical competitive priorities are development speed, fast delivery times, customization, volume flexibility, and high-performance design quality. It should be remembered that product life cycle is a crucial factor which distinguishes a new product with low demand and the same product becoming a stable product with fairly good demand. Initially a quick response strategy is desirable and later on an efficient strategy has to be resorted. Figure 30.7 Shows the zone of efficient frontier advocated by Chopra et al.

The figure30.6 indicates in a block diagram manner a supply chain consisting of supplier manufacturer, distributor, retailer and customer. It has been observed that the demand for items goes on increasing as we move up the supply chain from the retailer to distributor to manufacturer. This increase in magnitude and fluctuation in the demand where work- in -process inventories as we move upstream the supply chain termed as Bullwhip effect .The word bullwhip has been so called because it resembles the action of a whip where each segment further down the whip goes faster than the one above it. It has harmful effect on the performance of the supply chain. This is because the work- in- process goes on increasing backwards along the supply chain and needlessly increases the work in process level and money blocked the inventory.

Causes of Bullwhip Effect : A simple logical reason for the bullwhip effect can be conjectured. What happens is that a small increase in retailers orders due to his desire to keep some safety stock, which the authors call "squirrel complex" despite a steady demand from the customer, results in the distributor increasing his orders to the manufacturer by an amount greater than the retailer for reasons of keeping a safety stock, just in case the demand has an increasing trend .The manufacturer then sees a jump in demand Due to this the manufacturer increases his level of materials ,to be procured from the supplierin adition to increasing an increase in machines and labour. The effect of this increase in production results in too many goods are fed into the pipeline. However the retailer refuses the excessive flow which forces the distributor to also cut back his pseudo increase in demand. Seeing this drop in demand ,the manufacturer has no way but to attempt selling the goods at a lowered price to the retailer. through the distributor.

Apart from the above simple logical explanation, research workers like Forrester ,Lee and Padmanabhan have analyzed the bullwhip effect. The authors now present their interpretion

of the Lee-Padmanabhan model.

There are four major causes of the bullwhip effect :.

1. Demand Forecast Updating :

One of the methods of forecasting used widely is known as exponential smoothing. In this technique, the next weeks forecast is calculated by adding to the earlier forecast an amount of correction factor to update the new forecast.

Ft= Ft-1 + 𝛂( Dt-1 - Ft-1) . Though the process of adding the error( e ) seems to be logical the weak point of exponential smoothing lies in the choice of a rational value of alpha.

The value of 𝛂 varies from 0 to 1. If a manager uses a value of 𝛂 which is too high say .6 he might overestimate the Forecast and send a bloated figure of his forecast up the supply chain. This might upset the supply plans of the upstream member.

Every company in a supply chin usually does product forecasting for its production scheduling; When a downstream operation places an order, the upstream manager processes that piece of information as a signal about future product demand. Based on this signal, the upstream manager readjusts his or her demand forecasts and, in turn, the orders placed with the suppliers of the upstream operation. Some authorities contend that demand signal processing is a major contributor to the bullwhip effect

For example, if you are a manager who has do determine how much to order from a supplier, you use a simple method, such as exponential smoothing. The order you send to the suppler reflects the amount you need to replenish the stocks to meet the requirement of future demands, as well as the necessary safety stocks. With long lead times, it is common to have weeks of safety stocks. The results are the fluctuation in the order quantities over time can be much greater than those in the demand data.

2. MRP Based Order Placement:

The well known tool of Material Requirements Planning is based on the premise that order should be placed with the supplier in discrete batches with certain lead times. MRP thus breaks up continuous demand into lumpy demand.. MRP systems are often run monthly, resulting in monthly ordering with supply. A company with slow-moving items may prefer to order on a regular cyclical basis

One common obstacle for a company that wants to order frequently is the economics of transportation. There are substantial differences between full truckload (FTL) and less-than-truck-loads rates, so companies have a strong incentive to fill a truckload when they order from a supplier. For most items, a full truckload could be a supply of a month or more. . When a company faces periodic ordering by its customers, the bullwhip results.

3. Manufacturers offerings of low prices:

Manufacturers and distributors periodically have special promotions like price discounts, quantity discounts, coupons, rebates and so on. All these promotions result in price fluctuation. In addition, manufacturers offer trade deals like special discounts ,delayed payment terms) to the distributors and wholesalers, .

Such promotions can be costly to the supply chain. When a product's price is low through direct discount or promotional schemes, a customer buys in bigger quantities than needed. When the product's return to normal, the customer stops buying until it has depleted its inventory. As a result the customer's buying pattern does not reflect its normal consumption pattern and the variation of the buying quantities is much bigger than the variation of the consumption rate which occurs normally ,-resulting in the bullwhip effect.

4. Curtailing of supply during production shortage

When demand exceeds supply, a manufacturer often reduces the quantity of supply of its product to customer. In such a situation, the manufacture allocates the amount in proportion to the amount ordered. Knowing that the manufacturer will reduce the supply when the product is in short supply, customers exaggerate their real needs when they order. Later on, when demand reduces, orders will suddenly disappear and cancellations of orders takes place resulting in inventory oscillation

HOW TO COUNTERACT THE BULWHIP EFFECT

1. Avoid Demand Forecast Updates

Ordinarily, every member of a supply chain conducts some sort of forecasting in connection with its planning. Bullwhip effects are created when supply chain members process the demand input from their immediate downstream member in production. Demand input from the immediate downstream member, is the outcome of result of input from his own downstream member.

One remedy to the repetitive processing of consumption data in a supply chain is to make demand data at a downstream site available to the upstream site. Hence, both sites can update their forecasts with the same raw data , although the data are not as complete as point-of-sale (POS) data from resellers which is most authentic

Another remedy is the direct selling program which eliminates the distributor as well as the retailer from the system who are main culprits causing the bullwhip effect. Dell Computers sells its products directly to consumers without going through the distribution channel. Since long supply lead times can aggravate the bullwhip effect, just-in-time replenishment is an effective way to eradicate the effect.

2. Introduce a JIT type system:

Since order batching contributes to the bullwhip effect, companies need to devise strategies that lead to smaller batches or more frequent resupply,.the way the Japanese do .

One reason for large order batches is the cost of transportation. The difference in the costs of full truckloads and less-than-truckloads are so great that some manufacturers use a technique called tailored aggregation and induce their distributors to order assortments of different products. Hence a truckload may contain different products from the same manufacturer instead of a full load of the same product. The effect is that, for each product, the order frequency is much higher, the frequency of deliveries .A case study of multi item transportation using" tailored aggregation of products" has been taken in a Case study in the book.

3. Stabilize Prices

The simplest way to control the bullwhip effect caused by price canges offered by the manufacturer whatsoever the cause.. The manufacturer can reduce the incentives for retail forward buying by establishing a uniform wholesale pricing policy. The grocery has moved to an everyday low price (EDLP) or value pricing strategy.

Activity-based costing (ABC) provide explicit accounting of the costs inventory, storage, special handling, premium transportation, and so on that previously were hidden and expose o the false benefit of promotions. ABC therefore helps companies to implement the EDLP strategy.

4. Eliminate the need for Reducing supply in Shortage period:

Situations when a supplier faces a shortage, instead of allocating products based on orders, it can allocate in proportion to past sales records. Customers then cannot hype their demand unnecessarily The sharing of capacity and inventory information helps to reduce customer's anxiety and, consequently, do not order incorrectly. Some manufactures work with customers to place orders well in advance of the sales season. Thus they can adjust production capacity or scheduling with better knowledge of product demand.

30.11 VARIOUS INITIATIVES IN SCM FOR PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT

1 Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI)

Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) is basically evolved to facilities the operations at retail stores. It involves a continuous replenishment program that uses the exchange of information between the retailer and the supplier to allow the supplier to mange and replenish merchandise stock at the store or warehouse level. In this program, the retailer supplies the vendor with the information necessary to maintain just enough merchandise stock to meet customer demand. This enables the supplier to bettor project and anticipate the amount of product it needs to produce or supply. The manufacturer has access to the supplier's inventory data and is responsible for generating purchase orders. VMI was first applied to the grocery industry, between companies like Procter % Gamble (supplier) and Wal-Mart (distributor), But if applied provide the benefited of smoother demand; increased sales, lower inventories and still reduced costs of lost sales to the other industries.

VMI Business Model

In the fulfillment process using VMI, typically the activities of forecasting and creating the purchase orders are performed by the vendor/supplier and note by the retailer. Electronic data interchange (EDI) is an integral part of VMI process and takes a vital role in the process of data communication. The retailer sends the sales and inventory data to the vendor via EDI or other B2B collaboration facilities and the supplier creates the purchase orders based on the established inventory levels and fill rates. VMI process, the retailer is free of forecasting and creating the orders as the vendor generates the orders. The vendor is responsible for creating and maintaining the stoke plan for the retailer. The vendor sends the shipment notices before shipping the product to the retailer's store / warehouse. Soon after this, the vendor sends the invoice to the retailer. Upon receiving the product, the retailer does the invoice matching and handles payment through their account payable system.

From above we can say that VMI is a backward replenishment model where the supplier does the demand creation and demand fulfillment. In fact it a methodical way to transfer the ownership of the inventory to the vendors but still ascertaining the smooth material flow as and when required.

In VMI, the vendor tracks the numbers of products shipped to distributors and retail outlets. Tracking tells the vendor whether if not the distributor needs more suppliers. Products are automatically replenished when supplies run low, and goods aren't sent unless they're needed, consequently lowering inventory at the distribution center of retail store. Suppliers and buyers use written contracts to determine payment terms, frequency of replenishment and other terms of the agreement.

VMI is enabled by information technology, which often allows from a direct project pay off, The most prevalent technology in VMI is electronic data interchange (EDI), an ordering system traditionally conducted over private value-pulling network. Typically, the manufacturer then uses the inventor down EDI files from the distributor the manufacturer uses the inventory data to put together an anticipated order for the distributor. After getting an electronic acknowledgement, the manufacturer ships the order. When the product has been received, payment is made with an electronic fund transfer from the distributor's back.

The VMI concept provides improved visibility across the supply chain pipeline that helps manufacturers, suppliers and retailer reduce inventory and improve production planning, inventory turnover and stock availability with information available at a more detailed level, it allows the manufacturer to be customer-specific in its planning.

2 Just In Time (JIT)-2

VMI result into outsourcing of the inventory planni9ng activity to the supplier, whereas JIT-2 goes a step ahead where supplier manages the complete production plans.

Lance Dixon, the father of JIT-2 describes it, as "This is the ultimate partnership program for compatible customer and supplier, because it is the next logical step in the application the management cycle to the value chain, through the management of time within the supply chain. It represents the use of alignment and mobilization strategies with suppliers using in-plant vendor representatives to achieve breakthrough changes".

JIT system was based upon the synchronized planning between the buyer's needs and the supplier's production capabilities. It will not produce any breakthroughs or generate any major organizational transformation. It will result into proper materials control across organizations. JIT-2 can be regarded as a major catalyst for the macro logistics management model. In other words, we can system the JIT system assures the un-interrupted incoming material supply as per demand, whereas JIT-2 ensures the un-interrupted production from manufacturing lines.

In fact jit-2 eliminates the need for the sales planning activities form supplier organization and the purchasing planning activates form the buyer organization, which was carried independently. Both the activities are carried out simultaneously in JIT-2 environment. This results into more integrated and realistic plans to enable achieving targets. Typically, it automatically and naturally produces the necessary element of coordination within two organizations without "follow- up".

The concept of JIT-2 is based upon a mutual trust relationship where the supplier representative is empowered to use the company's purchs4e orders to place orders, which in theory replaces the purchaser and the supplier's salesperson. In practice, the supplier representative is brought into the plant on a plant on a full-time basis. This person is allowed to attend any product design meeting for his/her product and has full access to all relevant facilities, personnel, and data. Purchasing staff is freed up from all he paperwork and administrative tasks, allowing them to cultivate other skills such as negotiating and sourcing. PO placement and communication is improved; time is saved; material cost reduction is realized.

The benefits are substantial for both the customer and the supplier. JIT-2 provides a natural foundation for EDI, effective paperwork, and administrative savings. Material costs are reduced on an ongoing basis. Supplier personnel work onsite and perform various planning and buying duties as well. Because supplier personnel interface daily, increased insight leads to fewer schedule change surprise. This results in reduced inventory as the supplier plans directly from the customers MRP system on a real time basis. Most remaining time is spent working with design engineering staff, thus maximizing the opportunities of concurrent engineering and cost reduction.

JIT-2 makes an old negative "backdoor selling". The companies selling directly into design engineering have been selected jointly by purchasing and engineering management.

JIT-2 brings considerable technical knowledge and support onsite, involving purchasing to design engineering. Within purchasing supplier in-plant personnel can be seen as additional staff to address the project workload. Supplier in-plant representatives are empowered with the combined authority of the material planner, buyer and supplier, resulting in a uniquely effective and empowered support role.

Another advantage of JIT-2 to the supplier is that they usually get an "evergreen contract" which means no end dates and no rebidding. Coupled with the EDI links and information technology exchanges, which are a part of the overall logistics package, the JIT-2 concept can supplier a very serious strategic advantage.

3 Multi-Tier Supplier Partnership

We have seen so far how the supplier integration happened over period of times. Traditionally, if we see the buyer and supplier relationship, they were purely based on meeting fixed terms of purchase orders, i.e. in the days of scientific inventory management era. The trade involved a chain of independent firms ach adding separate value to items bought from other. We could see a typical way of contract i.e. arm's length pact. Buyers used to buy for price and performance in the open market. Whenever the marketplace offered a better deal, one supplier was left for another. These arrangements were central to the success of market economics but impeded economic growth. In fact, supply firms citc poor relations with their customers as one of the most critical barriers to their improved competitiveness. For example, US and European barriers their improved costs relative to their Japanese rivals. A main obstacle to reducing these costs was not planning nor did they share data on product performance. Business relations were conducted purely on short-term considerations.

Slowly the companies moved to the long-term and matured contracts like VMI, self certifications, and finally JIIT- type scenario. Today these techniques are not still helping both the parties. Companies are moving towards more integration with supplier. The demands on individual firms have become too vast to be met by each, who is acting in isolation. For a company to deliver maximum value to its customers, it must receive maximum value from its suppliers. Me over, no firm working alone can differentiate its products as much as is possible with suppliers' help.

The drivers of partnership are summarized into the following points.

Brutal competition across the globe is offering better quality, lower prices and less response time for the same product or service.

Smart & conscious consumers want more value, reliability, after sales service and smaller batches.

Limitations of isolated efforts in creative product differentiation, cost cutting methods, and productivity improvement areas.

KM Model Of Supplier Partnership

The model suggests phase wise implementation of various elements in partnerships. The criteria of this recommendation are the cost-benefit ratio for every step in this adoption. It says that the buyer company has four zones of decision making, namely:

Selecting suppliers for partnership

Selecting technology

Selecting business processes

Selecting optimizing models

As shown in figure, the models suggest the phase-wise implementation of trust, integration, investment and alignment strategies. This will ensure that the operating risk factor will always remain lowest during implementation. The model defines eight levels of partnership programme as shown in Table. The implementation focus along with the concerned owners (active functional domains) & the type of resource they share with supplier are also clearly shown there.

The success of the supplier partnership implementation is totally depending upon the performance of the concerned human resource. In facts, Davies (2002) pointed out the worldwide failures of partnerships and its causes. In his words, "Partnerships are a two-edged sword. Many of them are short-lived, and those that survive are often plagued with problems. To make matters worse, they don't simply fail; they deteriorate into strategic and managerial nightmares where companies lose their products, customer, markets, marketing plans, strategies, core companies and other intellectual property and even the entire company." The necessary preconditions of these failures are the possession of privileged information, the opportunity for opportunistic behavior, the motivation for opportunities behavior. He further concludes that partnership is fundamentally a 'plus-sum' concept which is based on the assumption that the merging of mutual and

Complementary interests, the sharing of privileged information and intimate collaboration and co-operation can produce strategic results that exceed anything that either of the partners can produce on their own or through arm's length agreements. In order to achieve this, companies must implement plus-sum strategies, plus-sum structures and plus-sum operating environments that reduce a company's exposure to the debilitating and destructive effects of partner risk by countering the proclivity for practices, competition and zero-sum mindset.

30.12 MEASURES FOR SUPPLY CHAIN PERFORMANCE

Supply chain performance measures seek to provide a quantitative basis for understanding the performance of the supply chain and indicate potential areas for taking corrective measures. Since improvement projects have a certain time lag, current period results may indicate the effect of previous time periods' efforts in managing the supply chain efficiently. Hence, measures could also be taken to understand the nature of improvement efforts currently undertaken during the measurement period. Therefore, supply-chain performance measures could be both post-process and process indices.

Financial indices for supply chain performance assessment

Post-process indices are those that rely on past data to assess the performance of the supply chain function during the relevant period of time. These measures typically use information available in annual reports of companies to compute indices. Inventory is the most representative item in the annual report, post-process indicator supply chain performance compute inventory measures. The following measures for supply chain performance could be computed from annual reports.

Traditionally, inventory turnover ratio and number of inventory turns are employed to assess the performance of the supply chain. While these measures are quite useful for accounting and control functions, they do not offer substantial help to the operations function. On the other hand, number of days of inventory is a useful measure for operations. It enables the operating personnel to relate the numbers to ground realities and helps them make improvements.

For example, consider a company having sales of Rs 300 million and a total inventory investment of Rs 60 million. The inventory turnover ratio is 20 percent and the number of turns of inventory is five. Alternatively, one can express inventory in number of days, which is 2.4 months in this case. An investment of 2.4 months of inventory clearly indicates that the lead time of various activities in the company pertaining to procurement, manufacturing and distribution is in the range of 2.4 months. Reducing inventory in this case requires that lead time is cut proportionally and clarifies, to the operating personnel, the nature of activities to be undertaken to reduce lead time and the relationship of these to the overall investment in inventory. Similarly, DSO, DPO and CCD indicate, to the operational personnel, the credit terms enjoyed by the company and offered to the customers, and their impact on the overall working capital needs.

One can obtain a detailed breakup by calculating the number of days of inventory for each class of inventory, that is, Raw Material, WIP and finished Goods and relating them to specific activities in the supply chain. The formula for com putting each category of inventory is given below:

Extracts from the annual reports for the year ended March 2011 and March 2012 of a manufacturing company are given below. Compute the relevant post-process indices of supply chain performance. Are there any significant inferences that one can make based on the computation?

Extracts from annual report

(All values are in crores,)

During the year, there is an increase in TID, DSO and CCD. Clearly, the company is having the pressure of higher inventory and has given credit terms to its customers. Therefore, although the finished goods inventory has come down, there is a significant increase in DSO, and correspondingly in CCD. Due to this increase, the working capital requirement has gone up.

The number of days of inventory in the case of raw material has significantly gone up during the year. Interestingly, during the same time, the credit term extended to the suppliers has come down. This could be attributed to any of the several causes, including increase in production, poor performance by suppliers leading to increase in safety stock and hedging inventory to protect against impending price increases. It could also point to the need for studying the in-bound supply chain for possible performance deterioration during the year.

Process Indices

Improvement in supply chain performance happens only when the processes related to the supply chain are studied and corrective measures taken. Therefore, a set of measures is needed to understand the nature of improvement activities pursued in the supply chain. Process indices serve this purpose for an organization. By virtue of the improvements in the process, the supply chain may improve its responsiveness, cost, quality or reliability.

For instance, when an organization develops superior suppliers with a high degree of delivery reliability and quality performance, the investment in raw material inventory may come down on account of reduced safety stock and lead time for procurement. Similarly, the component may also less in the long run. The following are some of the process indices used for assessing the performance of the supply chain.

30.13 SUPPLY CHAIN OPERATIONS REFERENCE (SCOR) MODEL

A frequently utilized for measuring supply chain performance is the Supply Chain Operations Reference model. The supply Chain Council, a Pennsylvania, USA, based independent not-for-profit organization developed SCOR. SCC was founded in 1996 and it initially included 69 voluntary member companies.

SCOR spans all customer interactions from order entry through paid invoice. It addresses all product transactions from the supplier's supplier to the customer's customer and all market transactions from the understanding of aggregate demand to the fulfillment of each order. SCOR is based on five core management processes related to supply chain that is plan, source, and make deliver and return. The return process deals with issues related to returning or receiving the returned products for any reason.

Performance Measures to measure different criteria in Supply Chain

Customer focused:-

1 Reliability: Delivery performance Fill rate Order fulfillment

2 Responsiveness: Order fulfillment Lead Time

Internally focused:-

3 Flexibility: Supply Chain Response time Production flexibility

4 Cost: Supply Chain Management Cost Cost of Goods sold value added productivity Warranty Cost

5 Assets: Cash-to-Cash Cycle time Inventory days of supply Asset turns.

30.14 Role of E-Business in Supply-Chain Management

Now a days E-Business is playing a vital role in supply-chain management as soon in the figure.

Figure 30.9 Role of E-Business in supply-chain (virtual organization)

Supply Chain in E-Business Scenario

One of the recent trends in supply chain management is the fulfillment of a customers need through a License Holder who does not involve himself in direct manufacturing. In this situation, the salesperson or the representative of the license holder records on his computer the details of the product needed by the customers. Then he sends an electronic message to the License Holder firm regarding the details of the product's needed

The License Holder manages the supply of the product through his electronic links with the third or fourth party Suppliers. This type of arrangement termed a virtual organization is shown in Figure 30.9

Review questions:

1 Did supply chains exist in early 20 th century ? What was the method of manufacturing at that time?

2 What were the factors which led to the evolution of supply chains?

3 What aer the three segments of supply chain at Macro lvel?

4 What is meant by SRM, ISCM and CRM?

5 Explain the difficulties encountered in the development of Internal and total supply chains.

6 How the customer focus has changed from 1920 till today? Discuss all the stages of change of customer focus .

7 Did MRP and MRP 2 solve the problems associated with inventory and capacity control?

8 What led to the use of ERP Systems ? What was the limitation of the ERP system?

9 Explain the use of E-Business in supply chain context. What is a virtual organization?

10 Is supply chain a true chain or a network?

11 What are the different supply chain strategies? Do you think that collaboration with trading partners is a good strategy? What are the different stages of strategic collaboration?

12 How effective Is the use of EDI useful in supply chain management?

13What is meant by Bullwhip effect? How to eradicate the ill effects of the bullwhip effect?

14 What is meant by Vendor Managed Inventory ?What is JIT 2?

15 Describe different methods of transporting materials from the supplier to factory and factory to the distributor or retailer.

16 What is meant by third party logistics and fourth party logistics

17 What are the different financial ratios which help in assessing the performance of a SCM?

18 How are efficient supply chains designed ? How are quick response supply chains designed ? Where do these opposite types of supply chains applicable?What is meant by zone of strategic fit?

18 What is a SCOR Model ?

19 What Performance measures determine internal effectiveness and which criteria determine external effectiveness of supply chains?

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