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Supply Chain Management as a Major Source of Competitive Advantage - Essay Example

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The paper will examine two key areas of supply chain management and how they affect organizations in the contemporary era. To this end, the issues of the balancing of diversity with the quest for lower costs and the issue of corporate social responsibility are analyzed…
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Supply Chain Management as a Major Source of Competitive Advantage
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Download file to see previous pages This paper illustrates that a firm takes inputs from the external environment, processes them and sells it to consumers. The process of transferring the inputs into the firm and getting the outputs to consumers outside the firm is at the center of supply chain management. Supply chain encompasses all organizations and activities associated with the flow and transmission of goods from raw materials through to the end users as well as associated information and monetary flow. Another definition states that the supply chain is “a set of three or more companies directly linked by one or more of the upstream or downstream flows of products, services, finances and information from a source to a customer”. This implies that supply chain management has to do with how the connections and linkages between a firm, its suppliers and consumers is conducted, arranged and utilised. Ross views supply chain management as a set of tasks that are carried out by an organization in order to attain results. He states that the supply chain is a set of collective tasks centered around the optimization of transportation/logistic, processing and distribution channels that a firm employs and utilizes. It involves functions like warehousing, transportation and other objectives associated with the markets. It utilizes time and involves the transfer of possessions. The concept of supply chain management is presented by Horch as the process of procurement, materials logistics, and distribution. This involves the institutionalization of aspects of logistics and the distribution of these logistics through processes related to upstream and downstream flows of the supply chain. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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