2) Which logistical functions are most commonly outsourced to 3PLs and why? Give examples.
3) Explain ERP and the advantages of ERP systems. What are the benefits of ERPs in talking to other SW applications?
4) Explain how RFID tags are used to reduce shrinkage. What are the benefits and disadvantages in using RFID for monitoring the movement of supply chain management goods throughout the supply chain?
5) Discuss reverse logistics including its definition and its process flow.
6) How does reverse logistics relate to a company being socially responsible and how is reverse logistics related to service recovery?
7) What is the relationship between demand management, order management and customer service?
8) In looking at demand management explain the difference in independent demand, dependent demand and derived demand. Explain how CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems are related to demand management and how can they be used in demand management?
9) Define and distinguish between possession, form, time, and place utility. Give a “real world” example for each one.
10) In the readings, Flint and Gammelgaard shared that creating superior logistics service quality involved managing at least nine service-related elements that pertain to either order placement or order receipt. Choose four of the nine listed and explain why they are important and how service quality can be negatively impacted if the element went lacking.
Bonus: 5 points.
Why is supplier collaboration and at times systems integration beneficial in building supplier relationships? In our readings, Sheth and Sharma shared examples of the benefits of supplier relationships with Eastman Kodak, Ford Motor Company, Levi Strauss, DuPont, McKesson, and Bose Corporation. Choose one of the examples that was shared and explain how logistical saving was achieved by supplier relationships and why you think this was effective.
- 3PL providers generally contain a vast network which typically are more advantageous than the in house supply chains and post outsourcing the company can leverage on each step of the supply chain in most cost effective and efficient way
- Outsourcing helps the company in focusing more on its core business rather spending resources in getting logistics sorted etc
- Outsourcing the logistics and management to 3PLs helps in saving effective time and provides convenience
- Outsourcing helps in gaining industry expertise and also in achieving scalability and the flexibility
- Lastly, continuous optimization is achieved once logistics and specific management functions are outsourced
- The loss of direct control over one’s logistic chain and depending on the 3PL operations
- Convenience comes at a price, therefore, a company can safe manpower and time in outsourcing its logistics management, but it is a costly affair
- Risk of loss of reputation
- Choosing the wrong 3PL partner can prove to be detrimental for the company
Namely, in the case of transportation, 3PLs help companies by providing solutions to – transportations outsourced to that of asset based carriers; management of private fleets; services of small packaging and big boxes; transportation solutions outsourced to brokers which are non asset based; consolidation services; improvement of services and management of transportation costs; bill payments of freight and auditing; reverse logistics, green logistics and the host of sustainability services. Similarly, examples of warehousing management when outsourced consist of the following examples – basic functions of warehousing, fulfilment of orders, processing of returns, cross docking, recruitment and management of labours etc (Lieb & Lieb, 2010).
More than being a benefit, ERP’s connectivity to other SW acts as a need and depends on the philosophy of the company. If an integrated and pervasive ERP is present in the system of the company, then the level of talking to other SWs is minimal and can be limited to mere downloading and summarizing. Manual entry of data should be avoided as that can result in unintentional errors. Having an ERP makes the data very fast, less creation of errors and business running becomes more nimble and flexible.
The main advantages of RFID are as follows;
- RFID tags are easily installable, and are small and hence can be used to track the smallest of goods
- RFID tags cannot be easily replicated and hence is more secure
- RFID enables the supply chain management of the company in maintaining real time updates and also facilitates the transportation and logistics of products
- RFID tags reduces theft, shop lifting and mis-placement of inventories
- It is a very costly affair to install RFID system in an organization operations
- When tags are installed in metal / liquid products, reading becomes a problem as these items reflect the radio waves
- Interference occurs when forklifts and walkie-talkies are operated
- The frequencies of RFID are not globally standardized which makes it difficult for international shipping and other organizations to be aware of individual country operations
- It is an invasive technology
Service recovery in the form of warranty recovery, repairing, value recovery, product recalls, redistribution, refurbishment, returns of product/service contracts and end of the life recycling occurs (Cousins, Lawson, & Squire, 2006).
CRM is linked to demand management, as it is an integral part of the latter. Demand management is conducted by a company through customer order management and supplier management and finally customer delivery (Boyer & Verma, 2009). CRM helps in demand management in obtaining information about such customers, conducting customizations if required, delivery of the product / service to the customers and finally after sales service.
Form utility refers to the product exists in the form which can be used by the customers and is valuable to him. Eg- Pizza
Time utility refers to possessing the products when it is required by the customers. Eg – Movie tickets
Place utility refers to possessing the products in places where they are needed by the customers. Eg – food items in a supermarket chain
Bonus Answer 11.
Supplier collaboration results in the joint development of specific capabilities for both the market as well as the supplier in order to reduce the costs, improvements of processes and further innovations of products/ services and this has what exactly happened in the case of Levi Strauss, the iconic denim-wear manufacturer. Levi’s started the program “race to the top” for creating sustainable supply chains and it entered a partnership with World Bank, to rewards its suppliers by providing low cost financing options when the suppliers improve their corporate responsibility and sustainability. This benefits both the partners as suppliers get access to vast raw materials and Levis produces sustainable, greener and low cost products (Rao, 2015).
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