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Module One—Introduction to Supply Chain Management
SHORT-ANSWER QUESTIONS (2–4 sentences)
Define supply chain management in your own words.
Supply Chain management is the coordination and management of all things dealing with the
supply chain; including purchasing raw materials, logistics, and delivery finished products to the
2. Explain the concept of value-enhancing benefits by giving THREE examples of benefits that
may be realized by a firm that successfully manages its supply chain.
A value-enhancing benefit is the direct outcome of successful supply chain management.
These benefits include, but are not limited to, improved product quality from both the end consumer
goods to the intermediate manufactured components, lower costs for purchasing and storage, and
better customer service. All of the benefits will have a positive impact on sales and improve company
Explain the difference between logistics and supply chain management.
Logistics is the transportation, storage, and packaging of raw materials, intermediate
manufactured goods, or the consumer products the company is producing. Logistics is an important
part of the supply chain, but supply chain management is the management of the entire process of the
List three concepts used by supply chain managers in an attempt to make a firm more
flexible and responsive to customers' changing needs:
Supply chain managers use agile manufacturing, JIT, lean manufacturing, strategic
partnerships, mass customization, and quick response to ensure flexibility with customers’ chaining
ESSAY QUESTIONS (8–10 sentences)
Discuss the differences between supply chain partnerships of the past and those that have
Traditional supply partnerships developed with a primary focus on the quantity and price of
the products they were supplying. This is due to strategies typically focused on short term contracts
which made supplies more competitive to achieve the lowest price possible. Little emphases was
placed on forming long term relationships to strength and benefit both companies. The recent
economic downturn caused many suppliers to go out of business, which left many contract unfilled,
and companies having to quickly turn to other supplies in order to keep their doors open. After that
point more emphasis was placed on the credibility of supplies in order to provide better visibility of
upcoming problems within their supply chains. Now consumers are demanding better quality and
better customer support. This is strengthening the relationships and forming partnerships between
suppliers and firms. Firms are looking for supplies that can provide them with the highest quality
products with a reasonable price and excellent customer service.
List the four elements of supply chain management and provide a short description of each
of the four elements. What types of failures might each of those elements create within
the supply chain? Why might those results be linked to errors in a particular element?
The four elements of supply chain management are supply, operations, logistics, and
Supply is the process by which firms purchase either their raw materials or intermediate
manufactured goods for use by the firm. If the supply chain breaks down for instance; a supplier goes
out of business or there is shift in the demand curve for a certain supply. This would cause the firm to
have to look for a new supplier, increased prices, or even a lack of manufactured goods to provide to