Supply Chain Management

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Successful SCM requires a change from managing individual functions to integrating activities into key supply chain processes. An example scenario: the purchasing department places orders as requirements become known. The marketing department, responding to customer demand, communicates with several distributors and retailers as it attempts to determine ways to satisfy this demand. Information shared between supply chain partners can only be fully leveraged through process integration. Supply chain business process integration involves collaborative work between buyers and suppliers, joint product development, common systems and shared information. According to Lambert and Cooper (2000), operating an integrated supply chain requires a continuous information flow. However, in many companies, management has reached the conclusion that optimizing the product flows cannot be accomplished without implementing a process approach to the business. The key supply chain processes stated by Lambert (2004)[14] are: * Customer relationship management

* Customer service management
* Demand management style
* Order fulfillment
* Manufacturing flow management
* Supplier relationship management
* Product development and commercialization
* Returns management
Much has been written about demand management. Best-in-Class companies have similar characteristics, which include the following: a) Internal and external collaboration b) Lead time reduction initiatives c) Tighter feedback from customer and market demand d) Customer level forecasting One could suggest other key critical supply business processes which combine these processes stated by Lambert such as: a. Customer service management

b. Procurement
c. Product development and commercialization
d. Manufacturing flow management/support
e. Physical distribution
f. Outsourcing/partnerships
g. Performance measurement
h. Warehousing management
a) Customer service...
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