Supply Chain Management (Scm) Term Paper

Pages: 20 (6354 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 19  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Business

SAMPLE EXCERPT . . .
The Central Delivery Management system serves to ensure timely supply of goods from warehouses to stores and finally to the customers. (Senheng News)

Supply chain management practices in the United States of America vis-a-vis Malaysia:

Past studies have reported that supply chains in Asian countries, including Malaysia, are fragmented and less competitive than western nations such as United States and Europe. From a general perspective, Asian countries are believed to behind their western counterparts by three to five years. Diversity in culture and language, regulations, infrastructure, taxes and organizational forms are some of the reasons that differentiate supply chain efficiencies. Companies in Malaysia have shown the tendency of not leveraging purchase activities across the organization to derive maximum value, which has been successfully adopted by several American companies.

Thus, there is a good opportunity for Malaysian firms to fine- tune outsourcing and achieve higher productivity and cost efficiencies. Another point of difference is that companies in Malaysia must achieve cost reduction by focusing more on logistics and distribution, rather than the traditional practice of squeezing production to save costs. For instance, Malaysian company Mayne Nickless adapted EXE's supply chain execution software and achieved significant improve in time-bound deliveries from 75% to more than 99%.Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
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Term Paper on Supply Chain Management (Scm) Supply Assignment

Satisfactory integration of demand and supply is fundamental to the success of supply chain systems. In the American scenario, global leaders such as Wal-Mart, Dell computers, Intel and IBM have demonstrated their expertise in this area. The same cannot be said of many Malaysian companies, which appear to be struggling with disparate supply and demand management strategies. The importance of having an efficient supply chain mechanism has even caught the policymakers' attention. In 2001, the then Malaysian Prime Minister committed grants for subsidizing their electronic industries to reach the global benchmarks. The government favored the development of RosettaNet standards, to enable Malaysian companies embrace global Supply chain management network practices with the objective of reducing logistics costs by enhancing supply chain efficiencies. (RosettaNet Malaysia) Malaysian firms seem to be lagging behind in the ability to integrate supply and demand due to a combination of factors that includes lack of expertise, technology and unreliable, insufficient data and forecasts.

SCM has the potential to favorably impact almost all types of industries, traditional or modern. For instance, consulting major Accenture reports that the floundering American pulp and paper industry, which has report more or less flat growth for much of the last decade, can propel growth by adopting judicious SCM strategies. The report identifies five SCM characteristics - operational excellence, capital discipline, segment diversification, integration excellence and global logistics excellence that can put the once high flying companies back on the fast growth track. This finding is based on the analysis of performance of a few highly successful companies in the same sector, which had consistently outperformed the rest of the industry by a large margin. The report also stresses the importance of having flexible and scalable technology architecture that allows for fast and accurate information sharing, forecasting and supply chain co-ordination. (Accenture Report)

In recent years, one of the most powerful drivers of success in SCM is the effective integration of various supply chain mechanisms and processes that underlie the buying process in organizations. But business and economic dynamics can make integrate a difficult proposition. For examples, interest rates can change overnight, fluctuation in foreign exchange value, customer can cancel or change orders and workers may suddenly abstain from work. These and various other factors can upset the SCM applecart and hence the integration mechanism must be geared to address these uncertainties in quick time. The Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto has developed a comprehensive Integrated Supply Chain Management System that serves to integrate the functions and the tactical and operational levels, in line with the organizational goals. This is an intelligent system that organizes the supply chain as a network of cooperating, intelligent agents, capable of performing one or more functions. (University of Toronto News)

Methodology:

The study approach primarily relied on data collected from secondary sources and data collected through questionnaires sent to the respondents. Based on the available literature, several hypotheses were formulated for analysis. This provided the inputs for the data to be collected from the respondents, based on which the questionnaire was designed and structured. Respondents were required to select options provided under each question so that meaningful data is made available for statistical analysis. Initially, the questionnaire was given to 30 potential subjects and their feedback was obtained. All respondents felt that there was no problem in understanding the items in the test and were willing to take the test. The pilot study was also used to establish the reliability of the questionnaire. In administering the questionnaire to the actual respondents care was taken to ensure that the respondents were people who were actually involved in the SC M. practices in their companies. In view of the geographical distances involved, the questionnaire was sent by e-mail and responses collected through the same method.

The objective of the study was clearly defined before embarking on the methodology. The main objective was to analyze the similarities and differences between supply chain management practices in Malaysia and America. This main objective was broken into smaller objectives to have a focused approach:

To assess the current supply chain management practices in Malaysia and America

To identify the critical success factors for SCM in the two countries

To identify the problems faced in implementing SCM in the two countries

To evaluate the impact of SCM on the operational performance of the companies in the two countries

To assess the impact of SCM on critical business parameters like cost efficiency, customer service levels and customer satisfaction

Subject Population:

Sampling is very important for the success of a study and therefore should be representative of the population. For this study, the method purposive sampling was adopted. This is because the study is about supply chain management. Since the survey involves responding to questions on a professional subject, it was felt that the respondents needed to have minimum level of education and logistics background. The sample comprised of logistics, procurement and supply chain management personnel with a variety of academic qualifications - business, management, science, arts, technology and engineering

For this study, the subject population chosen was restricted to the automotive companies. The main reason for choosing this population is that supplies of various input components are critical to the functioning of automotive companies. The number of input components and materials are varied in number, size, specifications and value and this makes it a real challenge for the automotive companies to integrate the supply chains and deliver the desired output. It was ensured that the companies chosen for the study had a formal SCM in place. Questionnaires were sent to 50 companies in America and Malaysia, of which 33 responded with the required responses from Malaysia and 35 from the United States. For the sake of comparison, only 33 responses were considered from American companies.

Data Collection:

For testing the various hypotheses, the questionnaire method was followed for collection of data. The questionnaire was designed to cover all the measures required to for carrying out the testing. Managers who are responsible for procurement and/or logistics functions were identified as the respondents. A brief note on the study and its purpose was attached to the questionnaire to help the respondents have an understanding of the study. Responses were obtained from 33 Malaysian and 33 American companies. For instance, in the case of testing the first hypothesis (HA1), the questionnaire required the respondents to select from the listed critical success factors and rank them in the order of importance.

In addition to the listed responses, a separate option labeled 'other factors' was also provided so that the true perceptions of the respondents could be captured without distorting the data. This served the twin purpose of collecting data that could be used for testing and analysis, at the same time allowing freedom for the respondent to express their own views. For HA2, respondents were asked to select from the listed problems related to supply chain management, which they feel, are applicable to their companies. In a similar manner, the questionnaire was structured to obtain responses relating to the other stated hypotheses. Data was collected on perception of the managers with respect to quality enhancement, customer service and customer satisfaction.

HA3: The questionnaire required respondents to choose from the listed characteristics relevant to the size of business operations. This is considered an important issue because size of business operations may have an impact of the efficacy of SCM systems and practices.

HA4: To understand the as to why companies in Malaysia and America resorted to SCM, the respondents were presented options to choose from and rank them in the order of importance as perceived by them. The options list included - optimum inventory, reduced delivery periods, improved quality, fewer suppliers, greater transparency, online supply management, lower costs, and enhanced demand-supply integration.… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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