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This weekly section provides you with an opportunity to think about what you hav

by | Apr 26, 2022 | Business and Management


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This weekly section provides you with an opportunity to think about what you have learned during this week and how you might apply that learning in the real world. A secondary aim is to help you to think about your learning and your study and to find ways for you to develop and improve as you progress through the course. You can be creative here and if you would like to use video, audio, or just a written reflection, then you are encouraged to experiment. Remember it is important to explain why something was relevant, rather than just discuss that something was good or helpful. You may like to structure your reflections in three parts:
1) What went well? – Here you can explain some of the key things that you learned and why it is relevant.
2) What didn’t go quite so well? – Is there anything you struggled with and why? Are there any concepts that are still unclear?
3) How will you use what you know? Here you can explain how you are going to use the new knowledge and understanding that you have gained from the learning this week. How will you apply what you have learned in the real world or to improve your future studies?
Notes: Several factors can impact transportation planning and execution strategies within the supply chain.
Figure 46.7. Integrated supply chain framework. Reprinted from “Supply chain management: Principles and structures,” by D. Ross, 2015, Industrial Engineering. 2015 by “The McGraw-Hill Companies”.
This figure of the Supply Chain Operations Reference (SCOR) supply chain model is a representation of the planning system required in a company’s supply chain management system. Specifically, this figure shows the need to integrate the plans of the different business functions into one single supply chain plan.
Planning is a vital component of a company’s success, and business leaders make plans for all their key business functions. The supply chain is one of those key business functions, and supply chain planning impacts the organization’s performance objectives (Okongwu, Lauras, Francois, & Deschamps, 2016). As a component of the supply chain, transportation planning can also impact these objectives. Additionally, transportation is an area of operations that has become increasingly important to businesses due to the ever-increasing need to improve efficiency within the supply chain (Holzapfel, Hubner, Kuhn, & Sternbeck, 2016). This need for improved efficiency has led to a need for better planning within the supply chain and specifically in transportation operations.
The need for better planning within the supply chain has caused business leaders to change the way they forecast and prepare for future operations. In fact, researchers have found that supply chain planning should encompass end-to-end integration of all functions within the supply chain, including transportation (Blanchard, 2010). This integration of business functions makes it possible for all areas of the supply chain system to focus on one common goal.
When conducting planning within the supply chain, it is imperative to understand the factors that can influence the functions within the supply chain. These factors can be both internal and external. Specifically, transportation planners must understand the goals of the overall organization (internal factors) and what environmental (external) factors are going to be involved when working to achieve successful transportation strategies.
Frequently, company executives determine that their company’s goal may be to increase market share for their products. This objective is often accomplished through expansion of their operations globally and/or by providing higher quality or improved customer service (Blanchard, 2010). In businesses where all areas of the supply chain are integrated and share a common goal, it is vital that supply chain managers understand global trade and customer service and understand how these factors can influence transportation planning.
One reason it is imperative that supply chain system managers understand customer service when conducting business globally is that culture may have a role in defining levels of customer service. For instance, what a consumer in the United States determines is a good degree of customer service may not be acceptable customer service in other parts of the world. The required reading by Bhakta et al. (2016) will provide additional insight into how culture can impact perceptions of customer service. Additionally, this module’s required video on shipping globally will provide further insight into the importance of customer service in the global market.
Another factor to consider when analyzing transportation planning and execution strategies is whether transportation and distribution are going to be conducted in-house or whether transportation will be outsourced to logistics providers. Some companies, such as Walmart Stores, Inc., choose to fulfill all their supply chain functions in-house through their distribution centers using their vehicles. However, some companies choose not to invest their resources in operating their own supply chain systems and instead choose to outsource their transportation, warehousing, and distribution functions to other companies that specialize in supply chain functions. Those logistics providers are third-party logistics (3PL), fourth-party logistics (4PL), and fifth-party logistics (5PL) providers and are often utilized due to globalization and increased requirements for customer service (Farahani, Rezapour, & Kardar, 2011). After reading the Seyed-Alagheband (2011) chapter on logistics parties, you will have a better understanding of what functions can be performed by logistics parties, as well as a better understanding of some of the advantages and disadvantages of utilizing logistics parties.
Bhakta, V., Lee, A., Kaye, W., Blanchard, C., Trivedi, H., Galceran, A., & Steinberg, H. (2016). Supply chain management: Customer service & Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions in China, Japan, & the USA (Links to an external site.). Allied Academies International Conference: Proceedings of the Academy of Legal, Ethical & Regulatory Issues (ALERI), 20(1), 1-5. Retrieved from
Holzapfel, A., Hubner, A., Kuhn, H., & Sternbeck, M. G. (2016). Delivery pattern and transportation planning in grocery retailing (Links to an external site.). European Journal of Operational Research, 252 (1), 54-68. Retrieved from
Okongwu, U., Lauras, M., Fancois, J., Deschamps, J. (2016). Impact of the integration of tactical supply chain planning determinants on performance (Links to an external site.). Journal of Manufacturing Systems, 38, 181-194. Retrieved from
Seyed-Alagheband, S. (2011). Logistics parties (Links to an external site.). In Farahani, R., Rezapour, S., & Kardar, L. (Eds). Logistics operations and management: Concepts and models. St Louis, MO: Elsevier. Retrieved from


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