Skjott-Larsen, Tage, and Bagchi, Prabir. (2002) Challenges of Integration in Supply Chain Networks: An European Case Study. ACES Working Paper 2002.1, August 2002. [Working Paper]
Ever since the Council of Logistics Management (CLM) adopted the definition of logistics in 1984, the integration of somewhat disparate activities of transportation, procurement, inventory control, distribution management, and customer service has been a major thrust in many firms. Realizing the synergies that exists in these functions, many companies have extended the concept further upstream and downstream to include entities outside the company to include vendors and their vendors and customers and their customers. Supply chain management, as the concept is now called, consists of the entire set of processes, procedure, the supporting institutions, and business practices that link buyers and sellers in a marketplace for effectively managing the flow of materials from suppliers to final customers. Many companies have successfully implemented supply chain concepts with spectacular results. Efficient supply chains have enabled these firms to compete better. What were the reasons for their successes? What were the challenges these firms faced in their journeys to achieve integration in their networks? How were they able to overcome these obstacles and challenges? In this paper, we examine these challenges faced by companies in integrating their supply chain networks using case studies.
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