Knowledge And It Management In Scm

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The knowledge workers are required to add value through activities because we are living in automation and information concentrated world. Knowledge management and IT management demands a proper approach or structure to impart education and train workers to imbibe teamwork innovation. In order to manage technology we need to plan, develop and implement decision keeping in mind the characteristics of our business processes and the organizational objectives we aim to achieve.

Analysis of findings from Primary Data

Apart from the literature reviews, I had collected primary data from the personal interview surveys.

Population and research sample

Individual Super Market Companies were treated as the unit of analysis. Super market companies located in London were chosen as the sample for this study. I have used non probability sampling method. I had used convenience sampling method for my research. I had selected this method because I could get the appropriate data with this method. The sample size I had selected was 35. Probability sampling method was not possible because of limited resources and time. However the outcome of the research is relevant to probability method.

Instrumentation

the survey instrument consisted of a cover letter, questionnaire.

Development of questionnaire

A structured questionnaire was developed to collect data from the British supermarket companies. The most fundamental and important issue in any survey procedure is to test the questionnaire for the purpose.

The cover letter was so deliberately designed to increase the overall response rate. First, the cover letter imbibe this confident in respondents that their data would not be revealed to any party and the results report will be based on aggregation. Second, to increase the interest for participation; the cover letter mentioned that the survey would not take more than ten minutes.

Information about the respondents

The personal interview surveys took place in the British supermarkets and organized chain stores businesses in London. A total of 28 personal interviews were conducted mostly from Sainsbury's supermarkets and few of them from Tesco, Asda, Morrison, M & S, Waitrose and Summerfield’s.

The interviews were administered to individuals identified from the list of Area manager, Store manager, Duty manager, or Shift manager. Since SCM include almost every units of an organisation, the survey in supply chain management confront difficult task to direct the instrument to the apt person in that organization.

This survey provides a senior management view but one that has, almost entirely, a vested curiosity in a winning projects.

Discussion of the Data

The data was discussed by grouping the individual questions into following main categories which provided a picture of the respondents, their organizations and the whole industry's competitive performance.

Basic Information

Supply Chain Management of the company

Main reasons for implementing SCM

Importance of SCM and Investment for SCM

Role of technology in SCM

Innovations and SCM

Importance of SCM in improving company performance

Barriers of SCM

Basic information

The respondents were mostly from all the major supermarkets companies based in London The supermarkets include Tesco, Sainsbury's, Morrison's, Asda, Waitrose, Marks and Spencer and Summerfield’s.

As I have been working with Sainsbury's from last three years, most of the respondents (18) were from Sainsbury's.

Almost half of the respondents were at middle management level, more than one fourth of the respondents were from senior management and slightly less was the supply chain management consultants. By means of the job titles and roles the respondent's background was conjectured.

Supply Chain Management of the company

Main reasons for implementing SCM: The top eight reasons that are believed to be the significant reasons for implementation of SCM initiatives as shown in (table1 and graph 1) include: reduce costs of operation, improve inventory, improve customer satisfaction, improve lead times, remain competitive, and increase flexibility as 86 percent, 82 percent, 75 percent, 75 percent, 71 percent, and 64 percent respectively of the respondents perceived that they are important. As indicated by the 95 percent confidence intervals shown in the parentheses, these proportions are inferred to be significant.

It also signifies that the respondents believe that the SCM plan can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of company's transformation process. Improving output quality and increasing market share were believed to be the other two reasons for SCM implementation, each receiving 49 percent. These low ratings may not signify that they are not important since they already perceived improving customer satisfaction and lead times, reducing costs of operation, and remaining competitive as significantly important. It is also possible that the operating facilities of the company may have implemented quality improvement projects and improved quality of their products and services to compete strongly in the market place.

Note: The above percentages are above 100% since respondents could select as many types of techniques as were applicable to their organization.

Importance of SCM and Investment for SCM:

The majority of respondents (82%) agree that their supply chain and production systems have turn out to be much stretchier over recent years. But a more responsive supply chain comes at a price: one in five (21%) of the sample say they are examining very much more in their supply chain and production systems than they use to do three years ago. Half (54%) estimate even today their investment stays at about the equivalent level, with only 8% shifting expenditure to diverse areas.

Surprisingly, not even single respondents confess to investing less in supply chain systems now than they were spending before. There is additional proof of how important the supply chain management has become, with the discovery that almost 90% of organizations, have a director who particularly looks after (18%) or board director who are responsible for supply chain operations (30%). A similar proportion (48%) also has a 5-year scheme in place for their supply chain and production systems.

But regardless of these remarkable levels of dedication, backed up by continuing expenditure, only a few numbers of companies show major advances. 27% of our sample reckons they have realized all the benefits expected from their supply chain systems.

The fast food service companies like McDonald's use Just in Time supply chain systems for and partnerships with the suppliers (26%). The fashion retailers and supermarket companies mostly do subcontracting and outsourcing for managing their supply chain (30% and 35% respectively). About 19% of the respondents told that they give the responsibility of managing their supply chain to the external consultants. About 28% respondents told that they have few dedicated authorized suppliers instead of too many.

Note: The above percentages are above 100% since respondents could select as many types of techniques as were applicable to their organization.

Role of technology in SCM

The respondents of our survey were requested to rate the use of specific information technology applications in supplier and customer interactions, on a six-point scale from "to no extent", "to a very little extent", "to a little extent", "to some extent", "to a great extent", and to "always".

The most frequently used technology is "e-mail/faxes", as 94 percent and 76 percent of the respondents indicated of using them "to some extent", "to a great extent", or "always" with suppliers, and customers, respectively. Similarly, 82 percent and 74 percent of the respondents respectively indicated the use of "bar-coding and scanning" in supporting supplier and customer transactions. Over 54 percent of the respondents indicated the use of EDI to manage customer transactions. The ERP systems were used with suppliers and customers with 65 and 58 percent, respectively, of the respondents indicated using them "to some extent", "to a great extent", or "always". Similarly, worldwide web-based systems were used to support manage supplier and customer transactions by 67 percent and 73 percent of the respondents, respectively. These results clearly indicate the high level use of IT tools for managing customer transactions.

Innovations and SCM.

When asked about the any innovations company seeking for effective SCM. Almost all the respondent companies are working to upgrade and innovate. In the execution of product/stocks transactions, the innovations are in the concepts like modularization (85%), postponement (34%), mass customization and flexible automation (67%), time-based logistics (60%), and cross docking (15%). In the execution of flow of information, the innovative ideas consist of the use of information machinery and tactical partnerships to increase the lucidity of information (100%). The respondent companies also have another look at the precise strategies that use the better information flows like constant replenishment (78%), inventory managed vendor (65%), rapid response and competent customer response (70%).

Many organizations feel they are on proper track of success with respect to long term, though still they have very little to demonstrate for their efforts just now. For example, a third of this year's respondents, have understand a few benefits, at the same time as the bulk (56%) are convinced that they may do well in coming future. No one of them believes that accomplishing these benefits is improbable - just part of a long-lasting course.

From our sample three-quarters (73%) declare they are at the present in comparison to two years ago making better use of integration tools/technology to connect together their internal applications.

Note: The above percentages are above 100% since respondents could select as many types of techniques as were applicable to their organization.

Importance of SCM in improving company performance

Almost all the companies have separate supply chain or logistics department.

The findings related to performance measurement do not appear to indicate a reliable description of how SCM success can be measured. This may be because respondents indicated low level of SCM integration in the company's operating divisions. Therefore, it is not clear if the respondents intended to cite what measures they would use or already they are using to measure SCM improvement efforts. Some may have answered negatively because of the low level of integration, and some yet did not answer at all. When respondents were requested to rate the effectiveness in general measures achieved as result of SCM initiatives, "reduced inventory levels", "increased customer satisfaction", "compressed order cycle time", "improved relationships with upstream partners", and "improved teamwork and cooperation among employees" were found to be significant as 59, 59, 58, 58 and 56 percent of the respondents indicated that these measures were "somewhat" to "fully" achieved. "Reduced operating costs" (54 percent) and "increased customer service levels" (54 percent) are the other two general effectiveness measures achieved. Based on the 95 percent confidence intervals, none of these proportions can be inferred to be statistically significant.

On the other hand, when the respondents were asked to rate which performance measures used, they respondents indicated that inventory turns, cost reduction, and on time delivery as the only three most important measures that are being used to evaluate the SCM plans with 63, 61 and 57 percent of the of them agreeing. Delivery times, lead times, and output quality are the other measures used, however, with only 54, 48 and 48 percent of the respondents agreeing. One would expect higher proportions for all these performance measure if SCM plans were effectively implemented. As explained earlier, the low level of SCM implementation could be the reason for these perceptions and indicates the need for further improvement.

Note: The above percentages are above 100% since respondents could select as many types of techniques as were applicable to their organization.

Barriers of SCM

When the respondents were questioned about barriers they come across to achieve maximum gain from supply chain.

There are several obstacle construct a supply chain giving high-performance. The survey respondents told the five most common - Top of the list comes, the difficulty of changing internal processes, which (74%) feel are too inflexible, lack of visibility due to data silos (60%); lack of predictability (68%), due to a poor of visibility and the inadequacy to recognize changes required to get processes back on the right track; partial information (55%), due to unsuited or deficient reporting systems; and local level optimization (63%).

Note: The above percentages are above 100% since respondents could select as many types of techniques as were applicable to their organization.

Note: The above percentages are above 100% since respondents could select as many types of techniques as were applicable to their organization.

CHAPTER 6- CONCLUSIONS

Now a day's supermarket companies are under pressure in order to meet customers' expectations. Firms try to provide new and developed product with reduced price, superior quality and expertise distribution. SCM use the current tools and techniques for amalgamation of the important processes. By following a course of well-planned actions and use of information technology as much as possible almost every company is trying their level best to increase or enhance the competence of their internal procedures.

This dissertation also discloses that the theory and practice in supply chain management still remains to emerge. The ability was confined to very few practitioners or at least they wish to expand their reach to various aspects of supply chain as mention in modern theory. The research recognizes the series of obstacles and means to supply management and it wind up with a consideration of the main trends. The organizations have realised the necessity for superior coordination with both upstream and downstream firms one provides key input while the other helps to deliver the end product to ultimate customer, respectively. This has led to the materialization of the notion of supply chain management (SCM). This era is completely astonishing as firms are not just competing for their finished product and/or services but also to strengthen their supply chains. They have realised that if they improvise their supply chain processes they can set apart their product/service offerings and propose better value to their existing as well as prospective customers.

To meet customer demand quicker than competitors supply chain management can be utilised, it develops quality product. It also suggests mixing of various business processes to add value for end customers. The commerce environment changes rapidly. Therefore, the focus of SCM must evolve accordingly. A powerful technology for business and communication is internet for buyer and supplier use. Abundance potential and various new methods for proper coordination among supermarket companies and their customers, has been gained by supply chain management through the use of internet.

The Internet provides tools that permit supply chain actions to be performed out in a harmonized manner enabling maximum supply chain performance. To offset the associated cost and risk the firms integrate internet and the process to manage supply chain, these firms have an edge over other companies who do not integrate... Use of Internet is not a means to an end in and of itself, but is rather a tool of supply chain management to increase customer satisfaction by cutting cost, reducing cycle times and developing smooth production flows. Better SCM’s results are obtained due to the use of internet and it has become a vital part of e-commerce. Since SCM developed in this age of information, the coordination between supermarkets to put together all the transactions, information and decisions run throughout the network is supported by network.

Successful SCM can be obtained if change is brought; along with administering individual functions one should also integrate activities in key supply chain courses. An example of is stated ahead: when the inventory level comes down the purchasing department make orders as per the requirements. Marketing department communicates with different retailers and distributors making note of customer’s demand and make an effort to satisfy their demand. The information which is shared by supply chain partners can be completely leveraged through process integration.

Normally speaking, in this competitive environment firms need to place SCM in their business model in such a way that they succeed. Internet and web technology are used to attain superior quality and less costly amalgamation with their partners.

Organizations which require the utilisation of new management techniques to perform more efficiently are high volume malls, shopping outlets, supermarkets and organized chain stores. Making available the right product, at the right time, at the right cost and at the right place can lead to success in today's competitive environment. This demands form the managers to be proficient at designing, marketing, pricing and trading.

Information technology (IT) can be defined as the assortment of technologies and tools that craft it simple for businesses, individuals, and other organizations to employ, develop, admin and transfer information. New innovations in information technology have principally altered the way in which business is performed. Now information storage, process, analysis and distribution are faster, comparatively less costly and easier due to reducing costs of personal computers and laptop. It has also removed geographical obstacles, making it easy for companies to procure process, package and sell products from all over the world. Today the consumers have the required information/knowledge of products and services at their disposal; they can purchase as per their need and desire (highest quality, cheaper etc.) by comparing different products, services or manufacturers. For a large amount of people worldwide internet has become the source or medium of communication, entertainment, business and trading. Therefore, electronic commerce is quickly becoming a significant element of the world economy. Known the value of information technology for successful businesses, managers of today are required to be aware of the concepts and continuously upgrade their knowledge in this area. The issues in information technology have been examined and how it can give power to managers to maintain its competitiveness is also discussed.

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