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Normally I set date to start my assignments am not a person who starts things earlier and finish it earlier, I set a time to start up things but anyway I finish my work on time. But after the last day of my dissertation advice session I start working on my thesis from that day. In the dissertation advice session the information given to complete the reflective analysis was major cause which helped me in to make my reflective report successfully. That daily dairy idea not only helps me in this project but also for normal activities of my life I started noting some important things.
To complete the thesis I worked practically by talking to lot of people and I did studied lot of books, journals and internet materials and some thesis which is written by some one relates to topic.
t took me almost 2 months to finish this thesis with all my hard work involved in it. When I started doing a thesis I found it difficult as I never did research like this as my previous education is based on exams and question and answer session. But this is the first time I am doing a project with lot of field work and lot of time I spend for understand the logistics management and the challenges faced by them. When I started doing this project I was not guided by any one and I was blank. Because I don't know what to write and how to start. Then I felt like going slowly to understand the topic first. What the topic says and what are the challenges faced by the apparel industry in logistics market. As one of my friends directed me what thesis is and what is the solution we should find for the topic. Which is set by the university.
Before working for project I started collecting information's like articles, journals, websites and books related to supply chain management and logistics. Group discussion held after the advice session was useful that I come to know about the opinions and ideas of my group mates which was different from one another and was very useful. Every day colleagues came with several ideas which were followed by all the members of the group.
But after meeting several people and after getting lot of information about the topic and different answer from different people and different book and journal says different things about the logistics world. It was bit confusing to start with but by setting a time limit to myself to write what I learned every three days. At the end of the month I saw what I wrote after 3 days. Then I consolidate it as a report. These are my basic step I took to start a thesis.
But I find difficult in finding the information practically which is meeting the apparel industry managers and staff. As I find hard to get appointments to get information and the information they provide is not fulfilled my questions. But still I did not lose the hope. I did lot of try at last in few stores like Zara in Croydon high street and M & S in Guildford had a good response to my entire question. I would like to state few of the answers provided by the managers in Zara, M&S and few more stores.
As I had several question relating to the topic. I went to Zara, Next and M&S apparel stores to find out their logistics performance. First one I went is Zara in Croydon high street surrey. Were I found good information about their logistics strategy and the manager of the store started out by saying the apparel manufacturers' and retailers' mantra for the new millennium? "Speed to market." It's the last leg of the "right product, right market, right time" race - and it's all about logistics. And he told the companies started concentrating and started investing heavily on investing on logistics as it is the back bone of the fashion industry. If I say you my personal opinion Zara logistics performance is excellent as it is vertical integration to ensure control over supply chain, and proximity.
Zara's centralized distribution facility gives the chain a competitive advantage by minimizing the lead-time of their goods. Zara's internally or externally produced merchandise goes to the distribution centre. This is cost-effective due to the close proximities of the distribution centre in Arteixo and their factories in Coruña. In the distribution centre, products are inspected and immediately shipped, since Zara's distribution centre is a place where merchandise is moved rather than stored. Then, to increase delivery speed, the shipments are scheduled by time zones and shipped by way of air, and land. The typical delivery time within and outside Europe is between 24 to 48 hours.
It was an informative session I had in the Zara store and I was amazed with their logistics performance and the lead time to the shelf is best than all other brand. Like M & S and Next lead time is longer than Zara lead time and these brands are horizontally integrated. But I found there is a disadvantage in vertical integration which I asked this question to a M & S store in Guildford, Surrey. Zara's strategy also creates some weaknesses. Their vertical integration has more Advantages than drawbacks but it is important to recognize its limitations. Vertical integration often leads to the inability to acquire economies of scale, which means they cannot gain the advantages of producing large quantities of goods for a discounted rate. Higher costs are then incurred for the Inditex Corporation. Inditex also has to support their own high capital investments for their chains and be able to financially back their
"Technology and skills beyond those currently available within the organization". Zara's speedy and recurrent introduction of new products incurs increased costs as well. They have higher research and development costs. They also have elevated costs due to the constant changeover of production techniques to create their different apparel lines. That also means that employees must be trained in order to use the new manufacturing techniques, which again leads to increased costs. Traditional retailers do not experience higher costs in all of these areas.
I found lot of information from local shopper till the managers about the logistics performance of lot of the apparel market like TK Maxx, Self Fridge, John Lewis and more. The outcome all are finishing at the end is right product at the right time and reducing the lead time to the shelf is always challenging to the logistics market.
During my collection of information I came across some problem, I shifted from Luton to London in the beginning instance I find difficult in searching books and other related journals, but by the advice given by one of my friend I came to know libraries nearby it helped me in collecting information. I made a timetable for myself every week and worked according to it. Mostly I go to libraries and collect information's during day and after I return home I took rest for myself for some hours and then go through the information collected by me on that day and will take notes for my thesis.
Once unfortunately I got a call from one of my elder cousin who is working in dubai and when he asked me about my studies I told him that am working for my project and by saying him the topic he gave me phone numbers of some persons who working in logistics sector. The information which was collected by me through phone from logistics managers who are working for ETA groups in middle east countries gave me a detail idea about the challenges which their company face and it was useful for me to research on the basis what exactly affecting apparels. From the day I started working whoever I meet I just put them my dissertation question and take note of the points given by them. For getting additional information and opinions of people I questioned them and comment their ideas and opinion in between which makes them to give answer and which helps me in theoretical argument.
This is where the stage I taught myself how to approach people in collecting information and getting ideas. Each person tell their views what challenges their company face and I came to know that some challenges which are major in some countries are not a big problems in other countries. So then I started my work focus on different countries challenges in port and other clearing process. Then I realised that my ability to research on a issue was improving and I felt much confident. Previously while working for my assignments I compromise if I didn't get certain information. But I felt that compromise doesn't wins an argument, so I was very much strict in what I want and I didn't used any substituent if I couldn't get information related . I tried and kept pressure on myself to finding things what is needed for me in completing successful thesis.
I find some difficulty in working during weekends after returning from my work. So entirely in the first month I couldn't able to work for my project during week days. Later I realised that am wasting time and even started working on weekends. This two and half month I heard many people saying even the person who talks with me in phone says your quite reserved than before. This is because my minds always think about the project that i need to submit and most of my words I had with my friends were about my project. Normally I am a talkative guy in nature but this time span made me and showed me a person who listens more than speak. I believe that this field work made me to think and act rather than before. Now I do started following the quote plan and implement. I even feel my patience was more than before.
I even watched some short videos in Google and YouTube and some of the interview posted by people related to logistics and supply chain management as it was in a visualisation mode It helps me more in understanding the concepts and I made it as my hobby whenever I feel bored i use to watch songs but after starting my project I started watching videos related to logistics. It also took me in interesting way and motivated to watch more videos of such type.
After collecting information from different ways like media, books, magazine, newspaper, journals, internet and meeting several professional and non-professional people I came to a understand a change in supply chain strategy and the current supply chain strategy in rapidly developing market.
I couldn't able to be in contact with my group members often as am far from them so most of my time with them were in phone and I too asked suggestions and gave them suggestions in finding information. And there was a huge difference in the way of working for project among my group mates and the incidents and experience which we shared was useful for us in going to find more information.
To make my work more easier in finding resources I even spoke with some seniors colleagues who finished their masters successfully they told about their time span spend for finishing the thesis and problems faced by them this made me aware to get rid of some problems which I may face in finding and working for data collection.
I even quote a line for myself while going through data collection. That suggestion can be asked from everyone but decision should be decided only by my own.
I felt there was one mistake which I made in this project work is I collected and take notes not in unique order that I should do my project .i mixed notes and it was quite difficult for me to arrange and make it. I get tensed several times because I was not confident and proper and was in a dilemma in making paragraph. I doubt myself which I need to mention first and follow other things. But quietly I came on it and did that accordingly in my best way.
When I finished my theses I felt much happy that I haven't felt happy like this when I finish my normal assignments. I believe that the effort I insert for this project in double the time which I work for assignments.
After collecting information from different ways like media, books, magazine, news paper, journals, internet and meeting several professional and non- profession people. I come to a understand a change in supply chain strategy and the current supply chain strategy in rapidly developing market.
But after collectively found some information about the topic I put myself in the place of a logistics manager and what will I do if I face this problem. I put myself in lot of question. This I thought because I felt like after my studies I have to face all the challenges and question I am thinking currently. I thought I will inter relate my questions and the challenges faced in my thesis which I did and more over this thesis made me think as a manager for a logistics apparel firm and it put me in a confident that I am capable of taking decision and I am capable of managing a logistics firm and I come to know what are the challenges and what are the disadvantage currently facing by the logistics operation.