Framework of Collaborative Design for Build to Order Supply Chain Term Paper

Pages: 26 (7001 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 15  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Business

¶ … Collaborative Design for a Build-to-Order Supply Chain


The Big Picture

In an effort to meet customer, stakeholder and shareholder expectations, many organizations have had to adopt unique supply chain management methodologies as well as to incorporate them into their corporate objectives and strategies. Unfortunately, these efforts do not always meet a firm's needs because of the fact that globalization and other factors such as industry innovation and new technologies constantly force these companies to reevaluate their existing methods and lines of reasoning. Today, 'fix it even if it is not yet broken' can be considered to be an accepted business philosophy. Companies understand that the benefits of constructing collaborative operating processes throughout the supply chain are a must.

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The objective of this research project therefore was to investigate some guiding principles that define an effective supply chain process. Through researching various industries and firms to grasp some of the accepted principles of a sound system, this report aimed to answer the why, what, and how of reliable collaborative supply chain scenarios. Through insights into how a successful supply chain process operates, this report can walk through various aspects of constructing and/or operating a successful supply chain. For example, the report attempts to demonstrate some supply chain breaking points such as the fact that organizations often establish their existing supply chain without creating a top down management philosophy supported by the highest levels of management. By having the support of management, various aspects of the process such as demands of uncertainty and risk are far less likely to adversely affect an organization's supply chain environment. The support of management systematically provides a process for adequately addressing a company's needs as well as offering the management team a viable process for predicting and/or forecasting if and when a build to order supply chain system either degrades or enhances organizational performance.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Framework of Collaborative Design for Build to Order Supply Chain Assignment

Framework of Collaborative Design

For Build-to-Order Supply Chain


In our extremely global and technologically advanced business environment, businesses can no longer initiate ventures in a 'business as usual' manner. That is because the bar has been raised and new consumer markets, shareholders and stakeholders' expectations and standards are higher now then at any other time in history. Businesses can no longer think that maintaining existing customers or working with suppliers in old or outdated ways will provide profitability or quality. Today, all aspects of a business, including the collaborative build to order supply chain processes must create situations that infuse substantial income opportunities to an organization. The key is that all aspects of a business are now required to be as seamless and efficient as possible. The world has changed and will continue to change just like the fact that shareholders will maintain their expectations for continued steady growth and high returns on their investments. To meet these growth expectations, organizations will have to continuously reinvent themselves in order to capture new and future business opportunities.

This report therefore will try to provide insights and understanding into aspects for measuring organizational success and/or failure as it pertains to the process of build to order supply chain management. It was also an underlying objective of this work to introduce specific aspects of the collaborative approach to supply chain management. The report tries to offer some basically understood insights into supply chains such as the various approaches for measuring success. These of course are but are not limited to functionalities such as unit costs, process speeds, output and process quality controls and how responsive the supply chain is to the constantly transforming business conditions. This report will also attempt to show the how and why of underlying philosophies for organizational supply chain methodologies.

For example, the report attempts to demonstrate why the processes must be effectively prepared to flex, bend or to be dropped all together for newly created or reinvented progressions because the business spectrum and life cycles of goods and services in general are in constant flux. In other words, what worked yesterday may or may not work today and even if it does work today, it certainly may not be reasonable tomorrow. Thus, the report can show how flexibility is one key to success by demonstrating how a build to order supply chain requires constant vigilance on the part of management in order for them to be prepared to adjust to the ever moving targets within the business spectrum. The report will do a minor examination into the automobile industry and specifically into the Ford Motor company to analyze and rationally demonstrate how an organization's manufacturing realm for example must adjust to the existing business settings and processes. The need for profitability through new approaches such as build to order supply chain management processes is a never ending struggle to succeed.


The purpose of this report is to discuss the build to order supply chain management process. Efficiency has become the name of the game in this current global business spectrum of the twenty first century. The world appears to have become smaller and a more universally connected entity in the sense of trade opportunities between many disparate cultures. Trade-based globalization is and will continue to be one of the more significant trends that affect the world's economy today and well into the future.

A major reason for this trend is that the western nations' consumption rates continue to boost the overall manufacturing economies as demand for goods and services continue to escalate to record highs. Consider that the United States' forecasted Gross Domestic Product has been expected to soar up to and beyond the two and half percent rate on an annual basis. Of course, we Americans believe that this is an outstanding level of growth until we do a comparison with the combined first world nation's Gross Domestic Product. This level of growth has been estimated to be steadily growing at well over a three percent clip with some Asian nations having even greater forecasts.

Businesses in the United States have had to contend with national debt concerns, limited resources, war, the threat of inflation as well as an unbalanced trade deficit that has forced our nation to maintain the stigma of being the world's largest debtor nation. This dubious status will inherently cause the United States to fall behind in global trade and business growth. Couple this with the fact that the trade surpluses from many emerging Asian nations including China will also force products on the United States as these nations' attempt to increase their own status and their citizens' standards of living. The transport volumes into North America and Europe from Eastern Asian nations and especially China have continuously grown over the past two decades with forecasts of certain growth well into the future.

How do these statistical insights apply to build to order supply chain management? These figures aim to demonstrate some of the inherent needs for organizational supply chains that must be capable of responding to and taking advantage of both new and existing collaborative business relationships in order to keep pace and to help companies respond to the changes of global expectations.

Companies can no longer afford the luxury of depending on outdated or inadequate information infrastructures or lack the ability to acquire, store, manipulate, and transmit data effectively and quickly not only within their own organizations but with external vendors, supplies, partners and often times -- directly with competitors. Supply chain processes in this highly technologically advanced times are crucial to the overall success of an organization because this process function represents an underlying foundation for organizational communication and success.


The build to order supply chain process has been and will continue to be affected by the phenomenon of globalization. The fact that the utilization rates of global resources are being consumed at unbelievable rates is good indicator that the current need for efficiency will only increase. For example, resources such as oil, coal and other fossil fuels are being consumed at very high levels. "The global appetite for crude in 2003 will grow by a robust 1.9%, or 1.44 million barrels a day, and in 2004 by 1.5%, or 1.16 million barrels a day. The IEA raised its estimates for daily demand growth in the two years by 160,000 barrels and 90,000 barrels, respectively." (Stanley)

Of course, these economic opportunities have the potential to help all nations, organizations and people to prosper. When consumers in the United States, China or any other nation including poor nations such as the African states all have the same ability to purchase a can of Coca Cola, buy Nikes, drink Corona or ride a bicycle produced in China, then we know globalization is working. "The rich industrialized countries contain less than a quarter of the world's population but consume over three quarters of the world's goods. The standard forecasts looking toward the twenty-first century project an even more drastically skewed distribution. For if the world's population growth continues to be concentrated in the poor areas of the globe, as… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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