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SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT AND E-BUSINESS

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This paper serves several main purposes. First, it aims at approaching the topic of supply chain management as one of central importance for the successful implementation of business today. Since many companies employing SCM have continuously faced problems with its realization, numerous solutions to these problems have been offered. These include the sharing of information with parties along the supply chain as well as the utilization of advances in information technology. In fact, the importance of in-depth knowledge of different e-business models and the Internet as tools of transforming SCM has been suggested.

Second, the importance of recognizing the major key success factors in any SCM transformation exercise has been thoroughly analyzed. These KSFs are numerous and have been identified by many authors as the determining forces behind the success of many businesses. Their integration and alignment within companies’ overall strategies have been emphasized as well. In addition, the six shifts in business focus driven by SCM have been evaluated in order to provide yet another crucial insight into the significance of the topic of SCM. Each of these shifts has been examined in order to allow for a clearer understanding of the implications for businesses. It has been suggested that the influence of SCM has been so great that, with the enabling role of IT, it has fundamentally changed the ways of perceiving competition, marketing, and competitive advantage. Furthermore, the importance of organisations’ IT architecture has been explained to reveal the stemming opportunities for transforming SCM. Special emphasis has been placed upon the need for partnering among organisations.

 

The paper finishes with some important conclusions that can be inferred from the examination of these key topics. These include the fact that companies must gain extensive knowledge of the processes of SCM as well as of the different types of e-business models and their implications. In addition, businesses must learn to identify the critical factors that contribute to a sound e-business model and make use of them accordingly. Companies should be aware of the major shifts in business focus influenced by SCM and pay particular attention to the emphasis upon collaboration, customer focus, and customization of products/services. Moreover, successful organisations must know their IT architectures well and the opportunities that these provide for carrying out business activity. In addition, businesses should explore the opportunities provided by BPR for gradual improvement of individual or groups of processes. Finally, some companies can even go a step further by understanding digital business design or DBD, which some authors consider as the next dimension in the development of business. By any means, however, companies must always rely upon strong business models and strategies for doing business, while maximizing upon the capabilities of IT-enabled solutions of SCM and e-business.

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Last modified on Tuesday, 11 June 2013 12:12

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