Creating a Sustainable Supply Chain

Topics: Supply chain management, Business process improvement, Management Pages: 4 (959 words) Published: April 19, 2011
1.0 Introduction
There are numerous definitions of the terms ‘Sustainable’ and ‘Supply Chain’. For the simplistic but practical definition is “Management of raw materials and services from suppliers to manufacturer/ service provider to customer and back with improvement of the social and environmental impacts explicitly considered”. The supply chain considers the interactions between a business and its customers and suppliers. The greatest benefits are derived by extending the focus as far as possible upstream towards the raw materials, downstream towards the consumer and then back again as the product and wastes are recycled. Sustainable supply chains are among the biggest responsible business challenges. Accomplishing sustainable supply chain improvement is of the highest urgency in today’s highly competitive world, and perhaps be even more so in the future. In today’s world, supply chains are flawed. They create waste and pollution and are threatening the existence of life on earth. As the population of the world increases and resource availability decreases, companies are starting to realize that supply chains must be re-designed. The supply chains need to be closed-looped, environmentally friendly and conserve and use as little resources as possible. The future of supply chain management is sustainability. Anyone should care about creating sustainable excellence because many supply chain improvement projects do not live up to their promise or produce only short term results. For example, a recent survey of manufacturing companies found that less than 15% of supply chain software applications were successfully implemented. For over twenty years, we have been supporting supply chain executives as they have attempted to improve the performance of their operations. There is some way to implementing sustainable supply chain. 2.0 The constituents of a sustainable supply chain

Supply chains are complex, highly interconnected, and multi dimensional, and while...

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