Quality of the product and price are the two main considerations when consumers buy something. However, there are some other issues which may prop up at the wrong time and spoil the show. For example, an excellent product at a very compelling price was available and someone ordered it online. Now, if this product is not delivered on time, consumer would get frustrated and may cancel the order. He can spread bad word of mouth as well. Here quality of the product may not come to rescue. The problem is somewhere else.
Let us see this from the side of distributor. No doubt, there is need for fast shipping and delivery. But if the transportation and cost of warehousing is high, it will eat up into the profit margin. There needs to be a balance between cost and quality of service.
Hence carefully designing various interactions starting from suppliers to consumers is very important. This is termed as supply chain management. There is large demand for associates with skills and experience in managing supply chain after pursuing program like distance MBA in supply chain management.
Manufacturers create product, but they seldom go the market directly. Product before reaching our hands actually goes through multiple parties. There are distributors, sub-distributors, retail stores etc. as part of this chain. In addition, there are suppliers who supply raw material to the manufacturers. This entire chain of supplier to consumer is called supply chain.
Let us understand the supply chain and its constituents in little more details.
Suppliers are the organizations which supply raw material to manufacture the finished product. These can be ancillary industries too who supply individual parts which are assembled to make the finished product.
Manufacturer uses the raw materials received from suppliers and converts it into finished product. Sometimes manufactures assemble the final product by sourcing different parts from vendors or suppliers.
Distributors store the products coming from manufacturers. They in turn sell them to sub distributors or retail stored. Even online selling portals have distributors who take care of actual delivery of the product to the consumer.
Retailers (traditional) display various products on their shelves for the consumers to buy. Online retailer display the products on their websites.
Consumers are end-users of the product. They ultimately decide fate or demand of the product.
These elements in the supply chain are either connected physically or with information or both. Physical part of the supply chain like manufacturing, transportation, storage, shipping etc. that is visible to us. However, the critical element which we do not see is the co-ordination among all the elements which control flow of goods.
In your curriculum of distance MBA in Supply chain management, you would know that supply chain management (SCM) is nothing but a managing and coordinating amongst the elements of supply chain in the most efficient way.
There are many software vendors like SAP, Oracle who have created their supply chain management platforms to help companies manage their supply chains in most effective way.
Demand for Supply chain Manager after distance MBA
As retail industry is booming, so is the demand for supply chain managers. Online retailing coming into the equation has underlined demand for better and more efficient supply chain. Efficient distribution is the key to survive and grow in this competitive market.
Consumer preferences are changing. They want faster delivery of their purchases. Industry need technology solutions and skilled supply chain managers who can take care of rapid delivery by managing the chain in the most cost effective way. If you take examples of giants like Amazon and Unilever, they hire many MBAs every year for their supply chain management roles.
The companies who demand supply chain managers are from every domain ranging from food, pharmaceuticals to software. Some of the names are Accenture, Wipro, Cybage, Suguna Foods, Cadila Pharmaceuticals, Dr. Reddys Lab, Ranbaxy, Glenmark, Unilever, LOreal, Coca Cola, Kraft, Mc Donalds, FedEx, HSBC, Oracle India Pvt. Ltd. etc,
Studying Supply chain management in distance MBA Program
As we have seen supply chain is a complex amalgamation of multiple parties and their interactions. There are many aspects which are critical to run the supply chain and overall business. They are logistics, procurement, distribution etc.
Typical distance MBA program in supply chain management would cover fundamentals of supply chain management, operations and logistics management, enterprise resource planning, how to international logistics is handled, total quality management, customer relationship management, finance and accounting along with other management subjects. Learning these would enable the aspiring supply chain management professional to design better strategies and use best of the technologies available to grow the business.