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Some Basic Questions About Supply Chain Answered Featured

Some Basic Questions About Supply Chain Answered "Where is the love sung by The Black Eye Peas recreated in a tunnel underpass."

The supply chain is like a circulatory system for a business. It is the only way that facilitates the process of transformation of time, labour and raw materials into finished and market-ready products that consumers can buy. Although the processes involved are complex, putting the right strategy in place can help reduce costs and increase production speed. The key to developing an efficient and well-oiled supply chain machine is putting the right people in the right places. This begins with identifying the right talent and hiring them. Below are some key interview questions that will help you in your journey to build a strong supply chain team.

What is the difference between supply chain and logistics management?

Although the two might appear the same to some people, they have some differences. For instance, supply chain management entails a holistic view of a business strategy and execution, from procurement to delivery. On the other hand, logistics management focuses majorly on the delivery of goods. It is a subset of supply chain management. Furthermore, the differences between the two can be seen in the logistics and supply chain definitions. Logistics is the process of integrating the movement and maintenance of products into and out of the company. The supply chain, on the other hand, is the coordination and management of activities in the supply chain.

What are the supply chain strategies of “Pull” and “Push”?

Pull and push strategies are both useful in the supply chain. However, they have unique meanings. The push strategies are implemented based on the assumption that demand will be predictable. As a consequence of this predictability, the product could be manufactured and moved up in the supply chain in preparation for the predicted demand.

The pull strategy concentrates on keeping stocks low and reacting faster to demand fluctuations. These strategies are focused on ensuring that supply and demand are balanced. Nearly all the supply chains are a hybrid between the push and pull strategies.  

What are examples of supply chain and logistics trends?

The supply chain and logistics management industry has changed significantly over the years. With this, there are new trends that show the industry keeps growing and will keep doing so in the coming years. Some key developments include an increase in same-day delivery and potential growth in shipping by players such as Amazon. There is also a likelihood that companies will attain a competitive edge by ensuring there is efficiency and engagement. With the existing challenges, new technologies are being deployed to enable people to track their products automatically to their point of dispatch.

How has e-commerce affected logistics?

Online shopping has increased significantly over the past three years. The adoption of this shopping mode has essentially changed many areas of society. Traditional logistics has been turned upside down in favour of e-commerce fulfillment as a business opportunity, a challenge that organizations led by retailers have to live with. Furthermore, carriers are forced to change their approaches to logistics as customers increasingly demand faster delivery of their products at their doorstep.

Ecommerce fulfillment requires an increased logistics space. This means that the brick-and-mortar stores might still have a role here. As such, the e-commerce revolution has changed the balance of power between consumers and businesses. Unlike before, consumers are powerful and can choose the items they want, how fast they want the product delivered and compare the prices of the product at the click of a button. As a result, businesses are now forced to streamline their operations and ensure that third-party logistics providers deliver the products they sell to the customer more efficiently.

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Scott Koegler

Scott Koegler is Executive Editor for PMG360. He is a technology writer and editor with 20+ years experience delivering high value content to readers and publishers. 

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