Strengths And Weaknesses Of Supply Chain Management

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Introduction In the age of globalisation national boarders are of less significance and because of our cross-border activity there is a growing need to understand how supply chains are organised and why. In this essay we aim to examine strengths and weaknesses of three frameworks, supply chain management (SCM), global commodity chains (GCC) and global production networks (GPN). As can be understood by their names the two latter frameworks examines how global supply chains are built meanwhile SCM focuses on how companies can achieve competitive advantage with help of their supply chains. Since the focus of the frameworks is slightly different we will evaluate them as a larger picture and will examine them individually but there are commonalities across all three. Competitive advantage through SCM In a world of mobility and speed, customers are looking for greater responsiveness, reliability and reduced lead times whilst still receiving value added services and cheap products (Christopher, 2011). To match those requirements and to achieve a competitive advantage companies must focus on activities that they excel in and outsource other activities to a partner who can perform them more efficiently or cheaper (Christopher, 2011). Mainstream SCM is usually described as a solution to achieving competitive advantage because of a more effective process where upstream and downstream linkages in the supply chain are managed based upon cooperation between firms and where mutually

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