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Week 5: Supply Chain Management

April 4, 2021
Brenda I. Belcher

Week 5: Supply Chain Management

Consider how often you use technology and the Internet. How often do you use a cell phone, the computer, or the Internet to communicate, shop, or complete computations? Consider how managers effectively conducted business in the past without these tools. This week you explore how technology impacts supply chains.

This week you are introduced to the concept of a supply chain, or how materials and information flow to and from the customers. In this approach, organizations are viewed as systems in which all elements are interconnected. Thus, a problem in one area will eventually impact the entire system. By measuring the performance within the supply chain, potential problems can be identified and the supply chain can be simplified or redesigned.

Learning Objectives

Students will:
  • Analyze impact of technology on supply chain and operation management
  • Evaluate the supply chain and operations management of an organization
  • Identify supply chain and operations management concepts, theories, and practices

Learning Resources

Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

Schroeder, R. G., Goldstein, S. M., & Rungusanatham, M. J. (2018). Operations management in the supply chain: Decisions and cases (7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

  • Chapter 16, “Supply Chain Management” (pp. 342-366)Chapter 16 introduces systems thinking as a way to identify how all the elements of the supply chain are interconnected, dependent on each other, and must be carefully coordinated. The chapter also discusses how technology and the Internet have made this process more efficient. The figures and tables in this chapter provide an excellent graphical representation of the supply chain process. Finally, the SCOR model for supply chain management is presented. Focus on the definitions provided throughout the chapter. Review and think about the examples and anecdotes provided in the chapters that illustrate the major ideas being conveyed. Consider how managers effectively conducted business in the past without today’s technology tools. Now consider how technology and the Internet have created a global marketplace for organizations.

Discussion 1: Technology and Supply Chain Management

This week, you have read about supply chain management and how all the elements in the system are interconnected. Decisions made along each portion of the chain impact the other parts, both upstream and downstream. Because of this, supply chains need to be managed as integrated systems. Reflect for a moment on how supply chain management is a strategic function of an organization.

By Day 3

Post a 250- to 300-word statement that addresses the following:

  • How has rapidly changing technology impacted supply chain management?
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of implementing the latest technology in supply chain management? Explain why.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ postings.

By Day 6

Respond to two or more of your colleagues’ postings in one or more of the following ways:

  • Ask a probing question.
  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.
  • Offer and support an opinion.
  • Make a suggestion.
  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.

Return to this Discussion in a few days to read the responses to your initial posting. Note what you learned and the insights you gained as a result of the comments your colleagues made.

Note: Be sure to support your work with specific reference citations from the Learning Resources and any additional sources you consulted. All references must be cited in APA format in an alphabetized list of references at the end of your summary post.

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 5 Discussion 1 Rubric

Post by Day 3 and Respond by Day 6

To participate in this Discussion:Week 5 Discussion 1


Discussion 2: Group Case Study

You will have two tasks to complete for the Polaris Industries Inc.: Global Plant Location case (p. 449). One will involve a Group Discussion and the other, your Individual Case Study paper, due this week.

You and your group members should discuss the best answers to the question or questions presented. Each member of the group is required to post a response to the assigned questions in the Group Discussion Board.

Read the Polaris Industries Inc.: Global Plant Location case study in your course text (p. 449). For your Group Discussion this week, do the following:

By Day 3

Post a 250- to 350-word response that addresses the following:

  • What factors should the management team consider when making the manufacturing location recommendation?
  • Besides the quantitative reasons for choosing a site location, there are several qualitative parameters that can be assessed. Identify a minimum of three qualitative factors and explain their importance in the decision-making process.
  • After all discussion, debate, and analyses, which of the three locations do you recommend and why?

While you are not required to respond to your colleagues’ individual Discussion posts, you are encouraged to do so.

Note: Complete the Group Discussion each week in the corresponding Forum of the Group Discussion Board found in the Groups area.

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 5 Discussion 2 Rubric

Post by Day 3

To participate in this Group Discussion:Groups


Project: Case Study

Read the Polaris Industries Inc.: Global Plant Location case in your course text (p. 449). After reviewing the information in this case and the Learning Resources for this week, complete the following:

By Day 7

Submit your completed 3-page individual Case Study paper:

  • Prepare a conclusion to your report by reviewing your responses to the case study questions you have answered in Weeks 4-5. Also consider identifying:
  • the most important findings
  • the major strengths and weaknesses of Polaris’ methods of managing operations
  • recommendations for improvements that could be made to bolster Polaris’ operations
  • Compile and revise your paper based on Instructor feedback from your Discussion 2 posts.

Submission and Grading Information

To submit your completed Assignment for review and grading, do the following:

  • Please save your Assignment using the naming convention “WK5Proj+last name+first initial.(extension)” as the name.
  • Click the Week 5 Project Rubric to review the Grading Criteria for the Assignment.
  • Click the Week 5 Project link. You will also be able to “View Rubric” for grading criteria from this area.
  • Next, from the Attach File area, click on the Browse My Computer button. Find the document you saved as “WK5Proj+last name+first initial.(extension)” and click Open.
  • If applicable: From the Plagiarism Tools area, click the checkbox for I agree to submit my paper(s) to the Global Reference Database.
  • Click on the Submit button to complete your submission.
Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 5 Project Rubric

Check Your Assignment Draft for Authenticity

To check your Assignment draft for authenticity:Submit your Week 5 Assignment draft and review the originality report.

Submit Your Assignment by Day 7

To submit your Project:Week 5 Project


Week 5 Quiz

Welcome to the Week 5 Quiz.

There is no time limit to complete the Quiz. It is made up of 15 multiple-choice questions, and is worth 30 points. It covers Chapter 10 of the course text.

By Day 7

Complete the quiz of this week.

Submission and Grading Information

Submit Your Quiz by Day 7

To submit your Quiz:Week 5 Quiz


Week in Review

This week you analyzed the impact of technology on supply chain and operation management and evaluated the supply chain and operations management of an organization.

In the final week you will learn how organizations develop forecasts and plan their facilities.

Next Week

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