University of Nebraska at Omaha Global Supply Chain Management Discussion Questions
Article 1. Wall Street Journal: “Cargo Piles Up as California Ports Jostle Over How to Resolve Delays,”
Link: https://www.wsj.com/articles/cargo-delays-are-getting-worse-but-california-ports-still-rest-on-weekends-11632648602?mod=hp_lead_pos2 (Links to an external site.)
Article 2. Wall Street Journal: “U.S.-EU Trade Summit in Pittsburgh Aims to Deepen Economic Ties,”
Link: https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-eu-trade-summit-in-pittsburgh-aims-to-deepen-economic-ties-11632664802?mod=lead_feature_below_a_pos1 (Links to an external site.)
Article 3: Wall Street Journal: “Firms Want to Adjust Supply Chains Post-Pandemic, but Changes Take Time,” Link: https://www.wsj.com/articles/firms-want-to-adjust-supply-chains-post-pandemic-but-changes-take-time-11609081200?mod=searchresults_pos2&page=1 (Links to an external site.)
Please review the assigned materials for answering the questions below.
- Discuss how shipping delays will likely impact the United States’ holiday season in 2021 (Article 1).
- Describe how improved trade between the U.S. and E.U. could improve the congestion of seaports in California (Article 2).
- Will the barriers to worldwide sourcing listed in Exhibit 10.4 be more critical or less critical for manufacturers in the United States in 2022? Please discuss how manufacturers in the United States could manage or overcome each barrier.
- Discuss the unique challenges of establishing a supplier development strategy (Exhibit 9.8) for new suppliers created by the COVID-19 pandemic (Article 3).
- Provide an insightful question about supplier development or the worldwide sourcing.
This is the first discussion:1. Discuss how shipping delays will likely impact the United States’ holiday season in 2021 (Article 1.)With so much congestion at ports, and so many delays across the entire supply chain the holiday season in the U.S. will be one where highly desired items will be harder to get. This will cause prices to increase as the demand for these items will exponentially outnumber the supply that is available. Since the entire supply chain is backlogged, and there isn’t a simple solution to the issues, the delays will go well beyond the holiday season. This will cause the holiday season to be one where presents will be at a premium and gifts that were ordered weeks or months in advance may not make it in time for the holidays.2. Describe how improved trade between the U.S. and E.U. could improve the congesting of seaports in California (Article 2). With the United States relying so much on Pacific ports due to the fact that so many products come from Pacific partners like China, Japan, Taiwan, etc. having an improved trade relationship with the E.U. will help ease some of the burden and heavy load on the seaports in California and the west coast. Having an improved relationship with our European partners is essential to spreading the wealth when it comes to shipping and receiving for international trade. The E.U. is a great place for the U.S. to look at improving trade with. As we already do a good amount of business with European companies, improving and increasing this trade with our European partners will benefit the entire supply chain in the U.S. especially due to the damage the pandemic has caused to the supply chain with increased congestion and increased shipping delays. Increasing the utilization of our Trans-Atlantic partners, eastern seaboard, and gulf ports will help relieve some of the congestion in California ports, while also helping the supply chain rebound faster than it would if we were to not improve our trade with the E.U.3. Will the barriers to the worldwide sourcing listed in exhibit10.4 be more critical or less critical for manufacturers in the United States in 2022? Please discuss how manufacturers in the United States could manage or overcome each barrier.I believe that the barriers to worldwide sourcing listed in exhibit 10.4 will be more critical for manufacturers in the United States. I say this because the supply chain in the United States has had a difficult time rebounding from the pandemic and with the landscape of the supply chain evolving due to the pandemic exposing weaknesses in the supply chain globally, manufacturers in the United States will have to pay close attention to the barriers and know how to break through them because if they don’t, an already slow rebound could really turn into a nightmare. Below I have discussed how manufacturers in the United States can manage or overcome these barriers.Lack of skills- A good way to manage this barrier would be for manufacturers to have mandatory education and training for their staff. Not just to have the basic skills that their job title requires, but to have employees take skills courses to help all employees be better versed in their positions. This will make employees more resilient to unforeseen issues and make them more adaptable and successful in difficult situations.Culture, customs, language- This barrier can be managed through education as well. It is extremely important to know the culture, customs and language of your business partners. What may be acceptable in the United States may not be acceptable in parts around the world, and it is imperative to educate yourself about the businesses that you will work with, so you don’t embarrass yourself or the organization. This should also be managements views and they should participate in this as well, to ensure the cross-cultural business dealings are successful.Currency fluctuations- This barrier is one that would be best managed by having agreements in place between the manufacturers and organizations in place to counter these fluctuations so that one party isn’t left with the brunt of the fluctuations. This can be achieved by sharing the currency fluctuation risk, essentially splitting the costs of the fluctuation between the firms involved (Monczka et al., 2020, p. 397). There can also be currency adjustment clauses in place in the contracts that way each party knows that the business will continue within certain parameters, and if the currency fluctuates outside of those agreed upon parameters, a new contract can be negotiated (Monczka et al., 2020, p. 397).Resistance to change- This barrier can be managed by publicizing success stories of similar businesses and how these successes can help improve the company in the short and long term (Monczka et al., 2020, p. 379). Those who are resistant to change can see that change is not always a bad thing if they are educated on the benefits of those changes and the potential room for success with those changes. If a manufacturer or other business isn’t open for change, then the world will leave them behind, and before you know it the doors are closed for good on that stubborn business. A business has to be accepting of changes in order to fulfill the changing market.Longer lead times- I believe the best way to counter the longer lead time barrier would be to implement a measurement and reward system. This could help motivate suppliers and customers to meet certain goals by offering rewards to those that meet or exceed those goals. The use of external agents could also help overcome issues with lead times by starting and implementing a worldwide sourcing program to find the best partners for the business (Monczka et al., 2020, p. 379).Increased supply risk- To manage this barrier, top management should implement a dedicated risk management team to dive into what potential risks there are in the country they are looking to do business with. Is the currency fragile, are there government issues that could cause supply disruptions? Questions like this should be asked prior to an agreement being made so that all parties are aware of the potential risks and have a plan in place to mitigate those risks if an event were to occur. This way the supply disruption will be minimal, and business can continue as normal.4. Discuss the unique challenges of establishing a supplier development strategy (exhibit 9.8) for new suppliers created by the COVID-19 pandemic (Article 3). Some challenges of establishing a supplier development strategy for new supplier created by the COVID-19 pandemic could be as follows. If manufacturers begin to reshore or take part in “regionalization” (Cherney, 2020, para. 6), it will make it more difficult to implement step one in the supplier development strategy which is to identify critical commodities for development. If companies are not manufacturing needed materials in the region of the new supplier, then it will become more difficult to analyze the supplier’s level of performance and ensure that it meets the standards needed. Another challenge would be that identifying critical suppliers for development (Step2) and step 6 (Define key metrics and cost sharing mechanisms) can be more difficult, because the metrics used for the routine analysis of current supplier performance (Monczka et al., 2020, p. 343) could be skewed due to the hits that a majority of suppliers and manufacturers endured due to the pandemic. The numbers may not tell the whole truth when it comes to supplier performance and could cause issues in properly identifying suppliers. Another issue would be meeting with suppliers’ top management teams to establish the foundation of a working relationship with the supplier/partner. I say this because the pandemic has caused travel bans and lockdowns across the world (Cherney, 2020, para. 18) and this makes meeting face to face difficult and in some cases impossible. If the new supplier wants to have eyes on the process of with their partner this may not be able to occur due to the current pandemic related restrictions. This pandemic has caused a lot of new challenges for everyone in the supply chain.5. Provide an insightful question about supplier development or the worldwide sourcing. With the pandemic about to enter its second year, how do companies accurately analyze data from potential suppliers, when recent data may not represent the whole truth due to the repercussions from the pandemic, which can lead to choices being made off of inaccurate data?
The second:Discuss how shipping delays will likely impact the United States’ holiday season in 2021 (Article 1).With the example of artificial Christmas tree costs already jumping 25% this season, it shows that people will need to do their holiday shopping very early this year. We may see a lot of products that cost more than usual due to low inventory which is caused by the backed-up ports in California. Because it now takes twice as long for cargo containers to be moved, I think we will see a big delay in holiday purchases and probably a lot of late package arrivals in January 2022.Describe how improved trade between the U.S. and E.U. could improve the congestion of seaports in California (Article 2).Logistics and global supply chains should be further adapted via enhanced collaboration and trade agreements. In this respect, during 2021 Summit, USA and EU established a high-level EU-US Trade and Technology Council (TTC), which has the following objectives: Growing the bilateral trade and investment relationship Avoiding new unnecessary technical barriers to trade Strengthening global cooperation on technology, digital issues, and supply chains Cooperating on compatible and international standards development Facilitating regulatory policy Promoting innovation and leadership by US and European firms Under the TTC, the U.S. and EU committed to partnership and rebalance of global supply chains. In addition, they are committed to increase the cooperation in the tech sector, work a prospect of resolving long-standing trade disputes, and develop a fair, sustainable, and modern international tax system. Meanwhile, in the U.S., the supply chains must be adapted rapidly to ensure efficient and effective business operations. Reduced waiting time in ports, 24/7 operations as a temporary solution, and increased supply of containers are immediate actions that will resolve the congested seaports issue in California. Will the barriers to worldwide sourcing listed in Exhibit 10.4 be more critical or less critical for manufacturers in the United States in 2022? Please discuss how manufacturers in the United States could manage or overcome each barrier.Some barriers will be more critical, and others will be less critical. The lack of knowledge and skills will be less critical because the U.S. have been sourcing worldwide long enough where they know the skills and documentation requirements. Resistance to change I think could be both because it’ll depend on the people in the different companies whether they like change or not. Longer lead times will become critical for manufacturers due to the congested seaports and how the supply chain has been affected due to covid, especially in other countries. Currency fluctuations will be critical due to the shorthand on inventory from the long stalls of unloading at seaports. Increased supply risk will be critical due to covid and culture, customs language will not be critical because the U.S. is familiar with worldwide sourcing and doing business with other countries and learning their business customs.Discuss the unique challenges of establishing a supplier development strategy (Exhibit 9.8) for new suppliers created by the COVID-19 pandemic (Article 3).The article states that many companies are considering changing the model to avoid future product shortages and transportation delays, even if it might increase costs. I think the most important process for implementation of supplier development strategy due to the pandemic, is to identify critical suppliers for development. Even if it costs extra, companies are saying it’s worth it at this point to find those critical suppliers during this time that will be able to transport on time and have inventory ready.Provide an insightful question about supplier development or the worldwide sourcing.Which barrier to suppler development do you think has the biggest impact and why? 9-5 page 346 as reference.