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Operations Management Chapter 15 Discussion Questions

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Chapter 15


Due 11:59 PM Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Each question is worth 2 points, with the total assignment worth 10 points.

This is a thinking as well as a writing assignment. I want to see your ability to express your thoughts on paper using proper grammar, proper spelling, etc. I also want to see how you are grasping the overall concept of Supply Chain Management. I am not grading you on the length of your answer (quality of words not quantity), just answer the questions as you see appropriate.

1) Explain why each of these is critical for a successful supply chain operation:

A) Integrated technology: Integrated technology produces real-time data and facilitates different business units to access and use the data simultaneously. These real-time data helps business units in different ways such as controlling cost, measuring and monitoring quality and productivity, analyzing and responding to problems quickly, improving supply chain operations and many more.

B) Information sharing: Information sharing helps supply chain operations become successful and avoid potential problems. For example, if demand for goods increases/decreases unexpectedly and such information is shared among the concern units in supply chain, the responsible units will be able to initiate necessary steps to tackle the situation effectively which will otherwise not be possible if critical information regarding demand is not shared timely.

C) Trust among trading partners: Trust among trading partners grows confidence in each-other and helps to establish long-run relationship which ultimately helps manage the supply chain operations smoothly. Trust among trading partners also help them to work for mutual benefits and interests.

D) Real-time information availability: It helps to increase supply chain visibility and improve response time significantly since all units and trading partners can simultaneously access to information and react to changes promptly.

E) Event-response capability: It helps to detect and respond to unplanned events. Early detection of unplanned events helps management act promptly and effectively so that such unplanned events would not interrupt supply chain operations or at least minimizes the negative effects on supply chain operations.

F) Procurement: Timely procurement is critical for producing goods or rendering services. Procurement/purchasing sources materials, parts, supplies and services required to produce goods and services.

G) Risk Management: Risk management is critical for identifying potential risks, their potential sources, likelihood of risks, deciding the amount of risk that is acceptable and finally developing strategies for addressing those risks. Risk Management is also important for planning Resiliency- the ability to recover from an event that negatively impacts the sully chain.

2) Given the complexities and risks involved with supply chains, might it make sense for a business organization to vertically integrate and be its own supply chain?

Whether to pursue vertical integration or not depends on several factors such as industry type in which a business operates, nature of competition within industry, available capabilities and resources, coordination requirement, integration vs. profitability, scale vs. profitability, market stability, material



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