The focal suppliers of M-Case had a close affinity with the basic assumptions of network theory and focused on strengthening ties between themselves (Soltani, Azadegan, Liao, & Phillips, 2011). On several occasions they tried to extend their collaboration to possess the downstream retailers of supply networks. The side effects of such actions were that not only did the suppliers remain immune to risk but they were also certain that their self-interests and own economic goals would be maximized and guaranteed (Soltani, Azadegan, Liao, & Phillips, 2011). The implication of alliances between the focal suppliers and the M-cases inability and fear of the focal suppliers action had a negative effect on product quality and end user satisfaction.
Time-Consuming Sampling Process
The process of sampling can be really lengthy and involve a lot of stages. Since the samples need to be approved, it normally involves different times in the laid stages before and after the production of goods CITATION Sol11 \l 1033 (Soltani, Azadegan, Liao, & Phillips, 2011). Supplier usually goes for bulk production after the sample approval process for matching materials with the primary approved sample. After production, before shipment, the finished product also has to be sampled and approved, to make sure its similar to the primary sample (Soltani, Azadegan, Liao, & Phillips, 2011). This lengthy sampling process interferes with the total lead time for delivery of the finished goods.
Unavailability of Raw Materials
Suppliers normally source raw materials needed so as to start production after getting orders. Some of the raw materials arent found in the local markets and have to be imported from other countries, far or near (Soltani, Azadegan, Liao, & Phillips, 2011). This makes production depend on the timely transportation of the raw materials. From the time the order was made, to the sourcing of raw materials which may take several days to transport and may involve delays, a lot of time is wasted. This is the major cause of increased lead time.
Lack of Utilities Supply
Most production happens in major cities since there is proximity to the population. These cities are normally crowded and in such situations, providing sufficient utility to the factories and industries becomes a major challenge for the cities to meet (Soltani, Azadegan, Liao, & Phillips, 2011). Some of these important utilities include electricity, gas, water supply etc. with lack of these production is hampered since with lack of even one utility, puts the factory in a standstill, which basically leads to time wastage. Since time is money, losses are incurred and delivery times arent met, and it becomes a crisis.
Inadequacy of Transportation Cacility
With crowded cities, traffic jams become inevitable. With the roads jammed with cars, movement of goods, let alone raw materials becomes really hindered. So its very hard to get timely movement of anything. With delays in raw materials transportation, there is late production and with delays in delivery of goods, consumers dont become too happy. This greatly increases lead times in a frustrating way. There is also the issue of hiked fuel prices which affects the costs of production in general. Some factories are situated in places with unavailable communication facilities, therefore transportation of goods to these areas also becomes a problem.
Bureaucracy being a system of administration distinguished by its hierarchy of authority, major division of labor, written and inflexible rules and procedures just to mention a few; is not confined to governments and semi governments but its also present in private organizations. Suppliers run from office to office, following a complicated and sometimes irrelevant procedures in order to acquire different permissions. These procedures lead to a lot of time wastage when it comes to shipments and even placing orders for raw materials. This affects customer order lead times.
How I Would Implement the Recommendations Developed in the Case Study
The level of quality required should always be achieved by involving the user. This can be achieved if there are clearly defined quality management roles in place to enforce a clearly defined quality management policy that has been put in place. Blame culture must be discarded from the firms ranks. If the necessity for quality and reliability in supply is the needed goal, then the firm has to ensure that the culture of accountability and responsibility is encouraged.
Changes to the Supplier Contract
There should always be collaboration between all suppliers and transporting companies. This is to ensure that once a quality product has been developed, the right companies or partners are contracted to ensure that the supply chain management is impeccable. This is to ensure that challenges that have to do with deliveries of raw materials or finished products are out of the way. Additionally, contract terms must always be reviewed to evaluate whether all parties are delivering their end of the deal as stipulated within the contract. This will encourage a high level of responsibility and accountability.
Autry, C. W., Goldsby, T. J., & Bell, J. E. (2013). Global macrotrends and their impact on supply chain management: Strategies for gaining competitive advantage.
BIBLIOGRAPHY \l 1033 Soltani, E., Azadegan, A., Liao, Y.-Y., & Phillips, P. (2011). Quality performance in a global supply chain: finding out the weak link. International Journal of Production Research, 269-293.
Yang, J., 2009. The determinants of supply chain alliance performance: an empirical study. International Journal of Production Research, 47 (4), 10551069.
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