Quality Concepts and Theories for Supply Chain Management

There are quality concepts and theories integral to supply chain management. To begin with the quality concepts, there is the concept of supply management. This quality concept dictates that organization should put emphasis in identifying, acquiring, accessing and managing various resources integral to a company’s operations. This way an organization will be able to exercise control over key function of bringing in key materials and even services for the effective functioning of a supply chain.

Another quality concept in supply chain management is value chain. This quality concept aids in analysis of competitiveness of the organizations and the effectiveness of the various strategies in the supply chain. This concept aims at supporting the various infrastructure, management of human resource, development of technology and procurement processes within an organization with the aim of improving the supply chain so that value is transmitted to customers and thus benefit even the organization.

The last quality concept that this paper will look at is the distribution channel quality concept. This is a concept whereby the flow of goods and service within a supply chain is immensely supported. This involves analysis channels within the supply chain including direct channels and the use of intermediaries. This ensures that organizations operates effectively as regards to distribution.

On to the theories of supply chain management, there are a number of theories that inform the operation of the supply chain. The paper will discuss three integral theories. To begin with, there is the agency theory. This theory looks at shareholders within the supply chain and how their relationship impacts on the efficiency of the supply chain. It is to the effect that good relationships between suppliers and managers of organizations, buyers and suppliers within a supply chain results into an effective supply chain management.

The theory of constraints also applies to the supply chain management. This theory advocates for the strengthening the various links available in the supply chain so that it can be effective. This involves strengthening of the various partnerships that exists within the supply chain. There are possibilities of existence of links that are not so strong within the supply chain and the same should be strengthened so as to better the capacity of the supply chain so as to ensure a better performance.

Lastly, there is also the systems theory of supply chain management. This theory advocates for the identification of key elements that exists within the supply chain and furnishing how to effectively make them click together. Various models can be developed within the supply chain to ensure that consumer behaviour, sales and information integral to the supply chain can be gathered to improve the supply chain.

Process Driven and Customer Driven Quality

Process driven quality as regards to supply chain management implies the ability of reliance of processes within the supply chain to perform perfectly by means of processes that are associated with the supply chain in an strict and persistent manner. As regards to process driven quality, processes are followed consecutively, and that all steps are considered and the same can only be modified but not skipped.

To give an example of process driven quality in a supply chain management, various organizations would direct their employees to take charge of process jobs that are key to the supply chain. These are the jobs that require little or no supervision for the result is not the goal but effective following of procedure. For such kinds of processes, individuals are required to have minimum breaks between work and work with little supervision. This could include activities such as managing a conveyor belt.

Customer driven quality as regards to supply chain management on the other hand refers to stakeholders in a supply chain understanding the various needs of their customersso as to improve on the quality of goods and services that reach the end of the supply chain. It is the customers that dictate what amounts to quality within the supply chain.

To illustrate this in practice, there are instances whereby stakeholders in a supply chain create a review system so as to collect the views of their customers so as to consider what quality of goods and services they would want to reach them. This can be seen through various methods of view collection including questionnaires and online platform so as to develop a supply chain as to customer’s precision.

Impact of Quality Theories on Industries

The various quality theories discussed do impact on industries including manufacturing and service industries that rely on supply chain. The Agency theory for example is about fostering partnerships within the supply chain so as to enhance its efficiency. If the relationship between suppliers and manufacturers are good, then manufacturers would be able to receive supplies in time so as to provide goods to the market on time.

Looking at the systems theory, this advocates for strong links within the supply chain. Strong links ensures fast flow of goods and services in a supply chain and the faster this is done, the faster customers are served and the more effective the operations of manufacturing and service industries are made.

 

References

Berry, W. L., Whybark, D. C., & Jacobs, F. R. (2005). Manufacturing planning and control for supply chain management. New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Mentzer, J. T., DeWitt, W., Keebler, J. S., Min, S., Nix, N. W., Smith, C. D., & Zacharia, Z. G. (2001). Defining supply chain management. Journal of Business logistics, 22(2), 1-25.

Tan, K. C. (2001). A framework of supply chain management literature. European Journal of Purchasing & Supply Management, 7(1), 39-48.