Mastering the Supply Chain is an introduction to supply chain management. The book integrates theory with practice and aims to create a cross-functional mindset in students and practitioners. It provides a comprehensive overview of relevant supply chain concepts. The book also lays out the challenges one will have to overcome to uncover practical methods for applying said concepts in the real world. Readers are continuously asked to actively reflect on their choices, thus experiencing first-hand the many challenges that excellent and effective supply chain management presents.
Mastering the Supply Chain presents a different way of learning that puts the reader at the heart of a life-like situation so that they experience the impact of every decision they make, not just in their own 'silo,' but across the business. In this way, they will learn that many supply chain concepts are relatively simple to understand but not so easy to apply in reality.
Chapter 6 helps students to combine the knowledge they have gathered and apply it to an interactive demonstration of the online business simulation game The Fresh Connection (free access is included in the book). This is an essential chapter for Supply Chain Management BScs and MScs students and also provides a background for those playing the full version of The Fresh Connection Business Simulation.
List of figures ix
List of exercises xiii
About the author xvii
About the contributors xix
Preface: simple but not easy xxiii
Structure of the book xxix
01 Supply chain: General introduction 3
What is a supply chain? 3
What does the supply chain look like? 8
02 Supply chain: The business dimension 15
Industry perspective: competitive strategy 15
The ‘what’ of the company’s business: customers and value propositions 17
The ‘how’ of the company’s business: competitive advantages 21
The supply chain and a company’s financials: the ‘how much?’ 23
The supply chain as part of a sustainable business 29
03 Supply chain: The technical dimension 39
From corporate strategy to supply chain strategies: typologies 39
Physical infrastructure or network: push/pull, facilities and transportation 44
Forward and backward integration: outsourcing and external collaboration 53
Planning and control: processes, forecasting, inventories, production 57
Information and systems, and organizational aspects 69
04 Supply chain: The leadership dimension 73
Making people move: performance measurement and target setting 73
Stakeholder management, functional silos and corporate culture 76
Trust and coordination: internal collaboration and team performance 77
Trust and coordination: external collaboration and transparency 82
The role of leadership in the supply chain 86
05 Simple but not easy (2): Complexity and alignment 91
Trade-offs: you can't have it all 92
Cross-functional alignment: S&OP and IBP 94
06 Knowledge in action with a supply chain simulation: Game on! 101
The Fresh Connection business simulation game 101
Introducing: Team SuperJuice 103
Introducing: Bob McLaren, the owner of our company 103
TFC: the company, the mission, the experience 104
Back to theory for a moment 107
What’s wrong with TFC? 108
TFC gameplay: what you need to know 114
07 Mastering the business dimension of the supply chain 119
Competitive strategy 119
Customers and value propositions 121
Supply chain and finance 122
08 Mastering the technical dimension of the supply chain 129
Supply chain strategies 129
Averages kill! 132
Physical infrastructure 134
Planning and control 144
Information and systems 162
09 Mastering the leadership dimension of the supply chain 167
Performance measurement and target setting 167
Stakeholder management: functional silos 170
Trust and coordination: internal collaboration and team performance 171
Trust and coordination: external collaboration and transparency 176
Stakeholder management (direct stakeholders) 177
10 Simple but not easy (3): Complexity and alignment 181
Supply chain strategies revisited 181
Making pros and cons explicit: business cases to support decision making 184
Cross-functional alignment: S&OP 186
11 The supply chain in a VUCA world 191
A VUCA world 191
Visualizing the status quo: business model canvas 192
12 Imagining business challenges for the supply chain 197
Market forces: new entrants and tough competition 197
The need for new business models 201
Transforming into responsible and green 202
Changes in the external environment: PESTEL 209
An emergency! 211
Managing uncertainties: risk assessment 212
13 Imagining technical challenges for the supply chain 215
Challenging the push/pull setup 217
Challenging capacity 218
Challenging machine life 220
Challenging the network design 222
Challenging segments and channels 223
Challenging the customer status quo 226
Challenging the value propositions 228
14 Imagining leadership challenges for the supply chain 231
Managing many more stakeholders 231
Supply chain leadership in the VUCA world 234
Managing trust and coordination: external collaboration 235
15 Conclusion - simple but not easy (4): Complexity and alignment 241
Supply chain strategies revisited once more 241
The Fresh Connection: now what? 242
Bob McLaren is back! 245
Closing the loop: the learning cycle of experiential learning 246
"This book is a real breakthrough for the learning and teaching of supply chain management."
"Supply chain scholars continually get bombarded with new/re-branded theories and concepts in this, (still relatively new) field of study. What is often sadly lacking is a blended learning approach with appropriate material and mechanisms for the learner to try/apply/test these theories and concepts in different dynamic business scenarios within a "safe experimental environment" revealing all the supply chain complexities to be managed in the future. Together with The Fresh Connection's experiential learning environment, this new book, Mastering the Supply Chain, provides the supporting material in a condensed, progressive and aligned style. It further fills the gap in serving industry's current critical need towards assisting both instructors and learners to establish the appropriate onboarding knowledge and skills that can enable businesses in achieve their multi-dimensional business strategies with implementable supply chain plans."
"This is the missing book on supply chain management: this practice-oriented, business-driven and interactive book is a pleasure to read and essential for people who wish to advance in their supply chain career."
"Mastering the Supply Chain profoundly reveals the core of supply chain management: strategy, collaboration, technology and leadership. Through 'The Fresh Connection' simulation game, which is used as an interactive case in the book, readers can experience the challenge and charm of supply chain management, and truly understand that the competition between modern enterprises is the competition between supply chains. To win in the competition, we need to deeply realize that supply chain management is not alone and isolated, but that each department should strengthen mutual communication, understanding and trust. On this basis, through information sharing, responsibility allocation, common decision-making and other ways, one can achieve the collaboration and unity of the whole operational process of the company."
"Mastering the Supply Chainis one of the few Supply Chain Management books that describes the explanation about the fundamentals of Supply Chain Management as well as how to apply these fundamentals concretely to the level of organization, management and operations."
"One of the major challenges in either learning or teaching Supply Chain Management is the creation of the bridge between the theory and practice. The non-experienced learnings remain abstract until they are applied in real life. Mastering the Supply Chain is closing the gap by providing a solid theoretical base as well as an immediate practical application through a business simulation in a very experimental and playful way. It's an absolute reference on Supply Chain Management for students, professionals, and leaders."
"Mastering the Supply Chain presents a systematic approach to understanding current supply chains and value networks. This book offers a theoretical and practical support that will help organizations as well as students understand supply chains, and the potential impact of trends in business and society on company competitiveness. Ed Weenk´s take on the underlying fundamentals delivers a pragmatic approach to enhancing the learner's understanding of fundamentals and beyond. His approach is a major step towards understanding Supply Chain basics and potential disruptions to the growth of the business."
"Building on his extensive training experience, Ed Weenk has written a very valuable and accessible book."
"Ed Weenk covers how competitive company strategy links to supply chain typology and to the process of Sales & Operations Planning. In the second and third part of the book, using a realistic supply chain business simulation game of a fruit juice manufacturing company, the Author lets a team of virtual students called SuperJuice show in a very practical way which trade-offs have to be made to execute the chosen company strategy and the complexities involved in the decision making. All in all, I think Mastering the Supply Chain will prove to be a very useful and practically oriented book providing a grateful and effective learning experience for a wide diversity of learners."
"Mastering the Supply Chain is an excellent work that gives us the opportunity to review the concepts of the Supply Chain from a perspective that achieves a perfect balance between the methodology and the practical approach. In the text, Ed Weenk manages to capture with great skill the complex relationships that arise in the world of business without falling into excessive simplification, while allowing the reader to understand concepts from a practical perspective. My most sincere congratulations to Prof. Weenk. I am sure that Mastering the Supply Chain will be of great interest to practitioners, as well as academics and students."
"This excellent book not only covers core supply chain management principles, buts adds a guided approach to mastering them. It will be of great value to both students and lecturers."
"Supply Chain is a broad area that requires many different managerial, technical and leadership skills, as well as knowledge and a holistic view of different areas, from purchasing to operations, finance and sales. Consequently, learning Supply Chain concepts and putting them into practice is a challenging mission, particularly for those in the early and intermediate stages of their careers. In such context, Mastering the Supply Chain offers a unique approach that blends a comprehensive review of the main concepts of supply chain, with plenty of additional references for a more in-depth learning of specific topics. It fills a much-needed gap that effectively allows the integration of such concepts to an experiential learning approach using the excellent business simulation game called The Fresh Connection."
"The title says it all:Mastering the Supply Chain - Not only in theory, but also in practice. This book covers the fundamentals of supply chain management with a strong emphasis on practical application. A clear structure guides you through mastering the multiple dimensions of the supply chain management: the business, technical and leadership dimensions. There are plenty of useful exercises throughout the book which challenge you to explore, analyse and imagine key supply chain management concepts or scenarios, thus ensuring a holistic understanding. The highlight is the learning experience through 'The Fresh Connection' business simulation - a game environment allowing you to study the effects of key supply chain decisions on the example of a fruit juice supply chain. All in all, a well-written book on supply chain management that prepares you to master the supply chain challenges of the future."
"So far there has not been a well-suited textbook to support and foster this excellent learning experience with the general concepts of supply chain management. I have been integrating 'The Fresh Connection' simulation with great success in my supply chain management courses for several years. The experimental environment of the simulation brings a real-world sensation into the classroom. Mastering the Supply Chain provides the essential learning needed to bridge the gap between The Fresh Connection and the fundamentals of supply chain management."
"Ingeniously incorporates knowledge and practice of the fundamentals. The diagrams are especially descriptive, and the combination of theory with experential learning is a game-changer in the quest to educate students and professionals how to manage supply chains in an ever-changing world."
"Mastering the Supply Chain is an excellent book that not only covers the understanding of core supply chain management principles but adds a guided approach to mastering them. The key learning and one of the important distinguishing factors are the hands-on learning using 'The Fresh Connection' game. Mastering the Supply Chain will be of great value for students seeking to understand and master those SCM principles, but also for lecturers giving them an excellent hands-on learning tool to their students."
"Mastering the Supply Chain provides an invaluable guide for understanding how decisions are made when managing the supply chain strategically. The emphasis of the book is on practical learning and hence the book is written around 'The Fresh Connection' supply chain game. Having used this game in my courses over several years, this book would be an excellent companion. The book will provide value for UG, PG and MBA courses with a focus on supply chain management."
"Mastering the Supply Chain is a great aid to those who would like to better understand the strategic and tactical landscape of Supply Chain Management as well as the mechanics of 'The Fresh Connection' business simulation. The book perfectly connects conceptual supply chain management considerations with business simulation practice. I strongly recommend this book to both teachers and students as a supportive tool for Supply Chain Management courses and trainings."
"Mastering the Supply Chain deals with how to manage a supply chain from multiple perspectives, including business, technology, performance and optimization. It contains many templates for analysis, thus giving the reader a quick guide to supply chain management. The author shows people the most relevant principles, analysis process and decision-making frameworks using one interactive case throughout the book. Mastering the Supply Chain is kindly recommended as a textbook for both students and practitioners."