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Supply chain management article - Essay Example

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This Article posits that in a project environment, many firms face the dilemma of deciding whether to adopt either an agile supply management approach or a lean one. The basis of selecting an approach to supply management is based on whether the product offering is innovative or…
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Download file to see previous pages The article, however, argues against these approaches, arguing that they do not help in one-off, complex environments like in construction or shipbuilding (Ullrich, 2014). The main reason provided in the article is that such projects need a combination of many divergent, largely functional products configured in an innovative and unique manner. The paper selects the example of shipbuilding to argue its case.
One of the main learning points is the way in which extended supply chains and individual suppliers may be managed in a more proactive manner so that they deliver better performance in the quality of the product, the time of the cycle, responsiveness or flexibility as well as the cost (Seuring, 2013). The most recognized philosophies in supply chain management are Lean Thinking and Agile thinking (Liu, 2007). Lean thinking is in most cases associated with vendor and manufacturing managed inventory namely just-in-time (JIT) and total quality management, also known as TQM. On the other hand, agile thinking involves mass customization and flexible manufacturing (Hugos, 2003).
A central preoccupation decides the most appropriate instance to adopt either one of the strategies, or combine them both into one custom strategy referred to as a ‘leagile’ strategy. While the article recognizes the contribution made by several contributors to the topic, Fisher’s contribution stands out because it offers the conceptual foundation for the building of similar supply strategy models (Cantor & Macdonald, 2009). Essentially, he argues in his contribution that the firm’s nature of product offering should determine the most appropriate supply management posture. The main issue, however, is the context in which the testing of these approaches occurs, especially in Fisher’s case (Seuring, 2013). What should be considered, according to this article, is the usefulness of the models in the generation of advice for the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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