Walmart Supply Chain Analysis

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Introduction “Supply chain consists of all parties involved, directly or indirectly in fulfilling customer request”, (Chopra & Meindl, 2001, p.16). It includes transporters, warehouses, retailers, and even customers themselves and not only the manufacture and suppliers. When referring to its function in an organization, it involved the process of receiving and filling a customer’s request with its major purpose to satisfy the customers’ needs while generating profit in the process. A prime example of supply that was listed by (Chopra & Meindl, 2001, p.16) was “Consider a customer walking into a Wal-Mart store to purchase detergent. The supply chain begins with the customer and his or her need for detergent. The next stage of this supply…show more content…
Without information, it would be hard for managers to forecast customers’ needs and wants, how much inventory is in stock and when and where more products should be produce or ship; in summation, without information managers can only make decision blindly, therefore information is vital when it comes to the performance of supply chain, because it provide the supply chain management with the necessary data to go about making the right decision so as to satisfy customers’ needs and generating profit. Information technology, however, is the instrument which “consist of the tools used to gain awareness of information, analyze this information, and execute on it to increase the performance of the supply chain”, (Chopra & Meindl, 2001, p.489). Information technology serve as the eyes and hear of supply chain, sometime a percentage of the brain in the supply chain management. It’s also consist of hardware, software, and people throughout a supply chain that gather, analyze, and execute upon information. The IT system help bill and improve performance with the use of information that is analyzed consequently has significant impact on the supply chain performance. For example, a manufacturer of IPhone workstation found out that most of its information on customer forecasting was not being used to regular production agendas and inventory level,…show more content…
Stated by (Chopra & Meindl, 2001, p.489), “ISCM includes all the processes involved in planning for fulfilling a customer order”. These processes are as follows: Strategic planning, this process concentrate on the network design of supply chain. The use of IT in this process has significant impact on the network design decision Characteristics of available production technologies have a significant impact on net- work design decisions. If production technology displays significant economies of scale, a few high-capacity locations are most effective. This is the case in the manufacture of computer chips, for which factories require a very large investment. As a result, most semiconductor companies build few high-capacity facilities. In contrast, if facilities have lower fixed costs, many local facilities are preferred because this helps lower transportation costs. For example, bottling plants for Coca- Cola do not have a very high fixed cost. To reduce transportation costs, Coca-Cola sets up many bottling plants all over the world, each serving its local market. Flexibility of the production technology affects the degree of consolidation that can be achieved in the network. If the production technology is very inflexible and product requirements vary from one country to another, a firm has to set up local facilities to serve the market in each country. Conversely, if the technology is flexible,

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