Supply Chain Management Strategy Essay

1416 Words 6 Pages
Introduction to Supply Chain Management Strategy Supply chain (SC) and supply chain management (SCM) are terms term most people in manufacturing are familiar with and “a SC includes all activities associated with the flow of products and services, from raw materials to finished products” (du Toit & Vlok, 2014, p. 26). Supply chain management strategy however, is less well known and yet is far more important for a firm to develop and execute. According to Gonzalez-Loureiro, Dabic, and Kiessling (2015) “scholars have suggested that SCM can potentially be one of the sources of a firm’s competitive advantage and a key to its global strategy, partly because firms seek differentiated strategies in the global marketplace” (p. 174). This supports …show more content…
Many articles apply a system to measure, categorize or otherwise attempt to evaluate an SCM strategy. For example, both Porter’s value chain model and the SCOR model that refers to plan, source, make, deliver and return were used to explain a firm’s position in various literature. The important point of a strategy is that it matches the type and style of business and supports that goal accordingly. For example, a strategy can emphasize either efficiency or responsiveness depending on whether the nature of a product or typical fundamental product or an innovative, cyclical product (Meredith & Shafer, 2016). Other types of strategies that are fairly self-explanatory include lean manufacturing guidelines, Triple A (agility, adaptability and alignment) and sustainability strategies (Trang, 2016). Huo, Wang, and Zao (2014) state that “our findings show that some integration practices are more effective under certain competitive strategies” (p. 377) and this demonstrates that supply chain management is not merely about integrating different members in a supply chain, but to do so with a deliberate and specific …show more content…
One notable example is a lean SCM strategy which is focused on a limited supply base and overall improved relationships. The most often used example or application of this type of SCM strategy is Toyota and its concentration and supply-building relationships with its Automotive Tier I, II and III suppliers (Meredith & Shafer, 2016).
Supply chains are highly variable and unique to many firms. “Some companies are likely to have a short SC that could include a single supplier. Other companies have complex, extended SCs [sic] reaching from suppliers’ suppliers to customers’ customers” (du Toit & Vlok, 2014, p. 26). This variability and distinctiveness requires a specific strategy that is well-suited to the firm. There are many forms of SCM strategy and a firm should decide whether they want a detailed lean approach, a fast and agile Triple A approach or a more traditional 5 objective strategy. In all cases, having a strategy is better than no strategy at

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