In this report I will be detailing what is supply chain, supply chain management and will be showing the supply chain for two organisations: BMW and Apple. The products that I will be specifying are the BMW 3 Series and the Apple Iphone.
What is Supply Chain?
Supply chain involves the movement of materials as they move from the supplier to the end of the customer. Supply Chain includes purchasing, manufacturing, warehousing, transportation, customer service; demand planning, supply planning and Supply Chain management. It is made up of the people, activities, information and resources involved in moving a product from its supplier to customer.
What is Supply Chain Management?
Supply chain management is the involvement of materials, information, and finances which move in a process from supplier to manufacturer to wholesaler to retailer and then to customer. Supply chain management entails coordinating and integrating these flows both within and among companies. To have a effective supply chain management system it is very important for the supply chain to reduce its inventory, and this is only possible if each process such as distribution, logistics reduce their costs, of course considering the assumptions that products are available when needed. I believe that managing the supply chain management effectively especially in a large business will give them the advantage and keep them ahead of competitors as a effective supply chain will keep customers satisfied and will be at a small cost.
What is Integration?
An integrated supply chain supply chain is the different between a large successful organisation and a small business. Every major organisation has an integrated organisation as it can lead to the business becoming successful. A small business will have a non-integrated supply chain as they do not have enough power to make demands because of the businesses size. Also a small business will not have the capital or the capacity to buy in bulk e.g. from china therefore the business will have to be purchase their stock from the local supplier making it a non integrated supply chain.
Integration is an activity by companies that specialize in bringing different organizations together into a smoothly working system. It is important in a businesses supply chain to be integrated, as it keeps the communication between supplier, manufacturer, logistics, distribution and customer effective. Communication I believe is most important in a supply chain.
What does BMW have to manage in their supply chain?
BMW will need to manage the following in order to have a successful supply chain:
Quality - the quality of the product, vehicle will have to be managed in order to keep the customer happy. BMW’s are quite expensive so no customer will want any damage to their vehicle.
Costs - Costs are important to manage as it enlarges the profit margin.
Transport/Logistics – The transport is key as it cannot take too long for the product to arrive, even though a customer would not mind waiting a bit longer for a car, they do not want to be waiting extremely long as it can annoy the customer which BMW would not want.
Monitoring whereabouts of goods – BMW will and should allow customers to track their product so they know where it is.
Managing communication – This is vital as the whole supply chain is managed through effective communication, if this is not managed it is imperative that the supply chain will fail.
What does Apple have to manage in their supply chain?
Referencing a document(refer to appendices 1 for link) I found during researching Apple’s supply chain management shows that Apple’s philosophy for a effective supply chain is: (1) Establishing organization of communications between suppliers; (2) executing as efficiently as possible; and (3) using the supply chain to address problems. This is what Apple obliges to do in order to maintain a