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Supply Chain Management Information Systems

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Question:

Q.1 Briefly describe the business processes supported by a Supply Chain Management (SCM) information system. In a global business like Emerson what are the advantages and disadvantages of using a SCM information system? With Emerson’s many divisions using different suppliers, what would be the benefits of using a single SCM information system for all of its divisions?
Q.2 Global companies like Emerson have suppliers, manufacturing, distribution, and retail operations. List and briefly describe the technologies and devices (used for input, output, and communication) that are used with SCM information systems. Choose two different input devices and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each. Discuss the benefits that they provide to the business.
Q.3 Consider that you have to implement a new SCM information system for Emerson. Describe each of the different implementation options. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the different implementation options. Make a recommendation and justify
Q.4 Modern SCM information systems and with the use of other technologies have supported businesses in improving environmental sustainability by reducing carbon emissions. Research and find an example. Briefly describe the system and how it works and how carbon emissions where reduced. Discuss what decision making is performed and how does the SCM information system contribute to the decision making. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages to the business.
 
 
 

Answer:

Introduction

Management of supply chain is referred to as the strategic and systematic coordination in the traditional functions of business and the tactics used across the functions of business within a certain company and within business organization in chain of supply. The purpose with supply chain management is focused on the improvement of performance in the longer term of organizations as well as their supply chain in their entire context. With changes in the technology, supply chain management information systems have been playing a highly crucial role within the ability of organizations for the reduction of costs and for increasing the responsiveness in the chain of supply (Wang, 2006). A significant example can be seen in the case of Emerson. Emerson is an international manufacturing organization of China dealing with the customers of South Eastern region of Asia, Europe and America.

With the help of information systems in supply change management, the organization had been successful in envisioning an individual hub with the help of which everyone would be linked for utilizing common mechanisms of communication and formats of data. In context with the case study of this organization, this paper will be discussing certain aspects related to the information system in supply chain management.

 
Business Processes in Supply Change Management Information Systems

In the current era of globalization and being an organization functioning across the globe, information systems seem to be having significant impact on integrating the main elements of supply chain at Emerson. By the system of hub and the system of ERP, the organization had been successful in coordinating the process of shipping with the suppliers and the providers. This can be considered as a major tool that enables the organization for responding to the demands of the customers, in accordance with the quality being desired (Wang, 2006). There is clarity in the reason as to why it will be taking increased manpower for compromising amongst the model of reference and the current process of business.

The issue that had been faced by Emerson along with a number of organizations was that the trivial and essential processes of business are more often mixed in the absence of specification in the priorities for all. In a consequent manner, the model of references involves constraints regarding the rules of enterprise, resources and organizations that are presented in a highly detailed manner. There are two key processes that support the information systems in supply chain management. These are as follows (Hines, 2004):

  • Coordination amongst the demand at the side of sales and supply at the side of production in order to make the plan of production
  • Coordination amongst the level of demand at the side of production and the supply made by the suppliers in order to make the plan of sourcing

Both of these processes are considered as the template of business process. The method in the modelling of business process is focused on modelling the process of business in the structure of hierarchy that is highly dependent over the strong points of business process in relation with the goal of business. There is consistency of direct interactions in process of business that takes place amongst the original performer and original customer of the problems being targeted. This is referred to as the key process (Hines, 2004). The level of hierarchy in the process of business, at Emerson became reduced as there had been decomposition of the issue within different elements and these had been sub- contracted to other individuals as the sub- processes. In the general sense, the key process had a structure that was highly stable, as the key process is developed by interacting with two individuals, the original performer and original customer, and the impact of the constraints of resource, organization and rule becoming small enough for being ignored.

Considering the other side of the coin, the sub- process has the structure of variable in accordance to a number of different constraints. For successfully designing the template of business process, extraction needs to be done from the key processes mentioned above (Cooper & Pagh, 2009). These key processes help in defining the actions that are interdependent and the improvement of these processes can be done by utilization of information systems in supply chain management. By the extraction of the key process at the template of business process, it can be reutilized amongst a number of enterprises and the manpower in the design of business process can be decreased.

Technologies and Devices of SCM Information Systems

Even though the organization of Emerson has gained a number of benefits from the information systems of supply chain management, there are often mismatching points in the expectations and the activities undertaken by the organization for the achievement of performance being desired.

 

Electronic Data Interchange

The technology of Electronic Data Interchange has been highly utilized by a number of organizations in the chain of supply for the facilitation of transactions and the exchanges of information. This technology is referred to as the computer to the exchange of computer with the structured data for processing in an automatic manner (Kumar, 2009). This technology can be utilized by the partners of supply chain for exchanging important information relevant to effectively run the businesses.

Advantages

  • Delays of time: Causes of delays are main because of two factors. Documents of paper may be taking a number of days for transporting from one party to the other. In addition to this, the manual delays in processing take place due to the requirement to compare, retrieve, file and key data
  • Costs of labour: In the systems not based on this technology, manual form of processing is needed for the keying of data, storage of document, matching, sorting, retrieving, envelope stuffing, signing, stamping, and reconciling (Halldorsson, 2004). While the equipment of automation can assist with certain processes, majority of the managers will be agreeing that the costs of labour for the processing of document help in representing a significant share within the overhead

Disadvantages

  • Adapting a number of varying interfaces amongst varying organization, where there is an increased need to map data and convert data
  • Costs in the process of changing procurement
  • Costs for the fees of subscription and transaction
  • The partners of business might be having extremely deep insight in one of the figures of business

Scanner and Bar Coding

Bar codes are referred to as representing a code or a number within a form having suitability to be read by the machines. Bar codes are widely utilized in the entire chain of supply for identifying and tracking the goods at each and every stage within the process (Halldorsson & Larsen, 2007). The technology of bar codes are a number of varying width lines, the presentation of which can be done in horizontal context, referred to as the orientation of ladder, or the vertical context, referred to as the orientation of picket fence.

 

Advantages

  • Reduction in the error: Utilizing scanners and barcoding helps in the reduction of rates in the error of humans. When individuals are making manual entry of data, the chances for the occurrence of errors is an individual part in the nature of humans. Medical workers have the ability of scanning the barcodes for viewing the doses and medication need of the patients (Hines, 2004)
  • Savings in time: Not only does this result in keeping the stock organized as well as under control, the time being spent performing the checks of stock are reduced. Since scanners and bar codes are easy for being used and quick, the value of time being saved continuously for declining with the release of barcode
Implementation Options of SCM Information Systems

The first option that can be taken is by strategic planning that involves four key steps. These steps are 1) Assignment of a project team, 2) Examining the present processes of business and the flow of information, 3) setting objectives, and 4) development of a project plan. The team of project has to be assigned with the employees under the department of sales, accounting, operations, customer service, purchasing and senior management. This is a significant option as it is followed up in an appropriate procedure (Ketchen & Hult, 2008). Documents of paper may be taking a number of days for transporting from one party to the other. In addition to this, the manual delays in processing take place due to the requirement to compare, retrieve, file and key data.

The other option of implementation is testing and training, where there is an involvement of four key procedures. These steps are: 1) pre- testing the database, 2) verification of the testing, 3) training the trainer, and 4) performance of final testing. The team of project should be practicing in the database of test for confirming that each and every information is working correctly and in an accurate manner (Kumar, 2009). When individuals are making manual entry of data, the chances for the occurrence of errors is an individual part in the nature of humans. Medical workers have the ability of scanning the barcodes for viewing the doses and medication need of the patients

Modern Information Systems of SCM

Sustainability in supply chain is a major issues of businesses that affect the logistics network or supply chain of the organization, and on frequent basis, quantifying the comparison in the ratings of SECH that utilizes a bottom line with triple layers that incorporates the aspects of environment, society and economy. The rating of SECH are referred to as the footprints of society, ethics, culture and health. The customers have been becoming highly aware for the impact of environment related to the SECH rating of the companies and purchases, and with the not- for- profit organization that set the agenda to transit the organic foods of growth, and the goods that are locally produced supporting small and independent businesses (Levi, 2007).

Hence, these help in maintaining sustainability in the chain of supply by the information systems. This is due to the fact that it helps in the reduction of environmental issues and thus, improvement in the rating of SECH. Management of supply chain is referred to as the strategic and systematic coordination in the traditional functions of business and the tactics used across the functions of business within a certain company and within business organization in chain of supply.

The purpose with supply chain management is focused on the improvement of performance in the longer term of organizations as well as their supply chain in their entire context. With changes in the technology, supply chain management information systems have been playing a highly crucial role within the ability of organizations for the reduction of costs and for increasing the responsiveness in the chain of supply (Mentzer, 2011). Considering the other side of the coin, the sub- process has the structure of variable in accordance to a number of different constraints. For successfully designing the template of business process, extraction needs to be done from the key processes mentioned above.

 
Conclusion

With the help of information systems in supply change management, the organization had been successful in envisioning an individual hub with the help of which everyone would be linked for utilizing common mechanisms of communication and formats of data. By the extraction of the key process at the template of business process, it can be reutilized amongst a number of enterprises and the manpower in the design of business process can be decreased (Wang, 2006). Documents of paper may be taking a number of days for transporting from one party to the other. In addition to this, the manual delays in processing take place due to the requirement to compare, retrieve, file and key data.

Sustainability in supply chain is a major issues of businesses that affect the logistics network or supply chain of the organization, and on frequent basis, quantifying the comparison in the ratings of SECH that utilizes a bottom line with triple layers that incorporates the aspects of environment, society and economy. The technology of bar codes are a number of varying width lines, the presentation of which can be done in horizontal context, referred to as the orientation of ladder, or the vertical context, referred to as the orientation of picket fence.

 

References

Cooper, M.C. & Pagh, J. (2009). Supply Chain Management: More Than a New Name for Logistics. The International Journal of Logistics Management, 8(1), pp 1–14

Halldorsson, A. (2004). Logistics versus supply chain management: an international survey. International Journal of Logistics: Research & Application, 7(1), pp. 17-31.

Halldorsson, A., & Larsen, T. (2007). Complementary theories to supply chain management. Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 12(4), pp. 284-296.

Hines, T. (2004). “Supply chain strategies: Customer driven and customer focused,” Oxford: Elsevier.

Ketchen, J.G., & Hult, T.M. (2008). Bridging organization theory and supply chain management: The case of best value supply chains. Journal of Operations Management, 25(2), pp. 573-580.

Kumar, V. (2009). Transition to B2B e-Marketplace Enabled Supply Chain: Readiness Assessment and Success Factors. The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, 5(3), pp. 75–88.

Kumar V. (2009). Developments in Theories of Supply Chain Management: The Case of B2B Electronic Marketplace Adoption. The International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, 9(6), pp. 85–98.

Levi, E. (2007). “Designing and Managing the Supply Chain,” 3rd edition, Mcgraw Hill

Mentzer, J.T. (2011). Defining Supply Chain Management. Journal of Business Logistics, 22(2), pp. 1–25.

Wang, H. (2006). Supply Chain Management Research and Production and Operations Management: Review, Trends, and Opportunities. In: Production and Operations Management, 15(3), pp. 449–469

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