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DEFINING SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENTbyJohn T. MentzerThe University of TennesseeWilliam DeWittThe University of MarylandJames S. KeeblerSt. Cloud State UniversitySoonhong MinGeorgia Southern UniversityNancy W. NixTexas Christian UniversityCarlo D. SmithThe University of San DiegoandZach G. ZachariaTexas Christian University“Management is on the verge of a major breakthrough in understanding how industrialcompany success depends on the interactions between the flows of information, materials, money, manpower, and capital equipment. The way these five flow systems interlockto amplify one another and to cause change and fluctuation will form the basis for anticipating the effects of decisions, policies, organizational forms, and investment choices.” (Forrester 1958, p. 37)Forrester introduced a theory of distribution management that recognized the integrated natureof organizational relationships. Because organizations are so intertwined, he argued that system dynamics can influence the performance of functions such as research, engineering, sales, and promotion.JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 1He illustrated this phenomena utilizing a computer simulation of order information flow and its influence on production and distribution performance for each supply chain member, as well as theentire supply chain system. More recent replications of this phenomenon include the “Beer Game”simulation and research covering the “Bullwhip Effect” (Lee, Padmanabhan, and Whang 1997).Discussing the shape of the future, Forrester (1958, p. 52) proposed that after a period ofresearch and development involving basic analytic techniques, “there will come general recognitionof the advantage enjoyed by the pioneering management who have been the first to improve their understanding of the interrelationships between separate company functions and between the company andits markets, its industry, and the national economy.” Though his article is more than forty years old,it appears that Forrester identified key management issues and illustrated the dynamics of factorsassociated with the phenomenon referred to in contemporary business literature as Supply ChainManagement (SCM).The term supply chain management has risen to prominence over the past ten years (Cooper etal. 1997). For example, at the 1995 Annual Conference of the Council of Logistics Management, 13.5%of the concurrent session titles contained the words “supply chain.” At the 1997 conference, just twoyears later, the number of sessions containing the term rose to 22.4%. Moreover, the term is frequentlyused to describe executive responsibilities in corporations (La Londe 1997). SCM has become sucha “hot topic” that it is difficult to pick up a periodical on manufacturing, distribution, marketing,customer management, or transportation without seeing an article about SCM or SCM-related topics(Ross 1998).There are many reasons for the popularity of the concept. Specific drivers may be traced to trendsin global sourcing, an emphasis on time and quality-based competition, and their respective contributions to greater environmental uncertainty. Corporations have turned increasingly to globalsources for their supplies. This globalization of supply has forced companies to look for more effective ways to coordinate the flow of materials into and out of the company. Key to such coordinationis an orientation toward closer relationships with suppliers. Further, companies in particular and supply chains in general compete more today on the basis of time and quality. Getting a defect-free product to the customer faster and more reliably than the competition is no longer seen as a competitiveadvantage, but simply a requirement to be in the market. Customers are demanding products consistently delivered faster, exactly on time, and with no damage. Each of these necessitates closer coordination with suppliers and distributors. This global orientation and increased performance-basedcompetition, combined with rapidly changing technology and economic conditions, all contributeto marketplace uncertainty. This uncertainty requires greater flexibility on the part of individual companies and supply chains, which in turn demands more flexibility in supply chain relationships.Despite the popularity of the term Supply Chain Management, both in academia and practice,there remains considerable confusion as to its meaning. Some authors define SCM in operational termsinvolving the flow of materials and products, some view it as a management philosophy, and someview it in terms of a management process (Tyndall et al. 1998). Authors have even conceptualizedSCM differently within the same article: as a form of integrated system between vertical integration2 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAand separate identities on one hand, and as a management philosophy on the other hand (Cooper andEllram 1993).Such ambiguity suggests a need to examine the phenomena of SCM more closely in order toclearly define the term and concept, to identify those factors that contribute to effective SCM, andto suggest how the adoption of a SCM approach can affect corporate strategy and performance. Thepurpose of this paper is to examine the existing research in an effort to understand the concept of “supply chain management.” Various definitions of SCM and “supply chain” are reviewed, categorized,and synthesized. Definitions of supporting constructs of SCM and a framework are then offered toestablish a consistent means to conceptualize SCM. Antecedents and consequences of SCM are identified, and the boundaries of SCM in terms of business functions and organizations are proposed. Aconceptual model and definition of SCM are then presented that indicate the nature, antecedents, andconsequences of the phenomena. The model is accompanied by a series of managerial and researchimplications.WHAT IS SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT?It has been noted that discussions of SCM often use complicated terminology, thus limiting management’s understanding of the concept and its effectiveness for practical application (Ross 1998).This section is, thus, dedicated to reviewing, classifying, and synthesizing some of the widely-useddefinitions of “supply chain” and “supply chain management” in both academia and practice. Thegoal of this discussion is the development of one, comprehensive definition upon which managersand future researchers can build.Defining the Supply ChainThe definition of “supply chain” seems to be more common across authors than the definitionof “supply chain management” (Cooper and Ellram 1993; La Londe and Masters 1994; Lambert, Stock,and Ellram 1998). La Londe and Masters proposed that a supply chain is a set of firms that pass materials forward. Normally, several independent firms are involved in manufacturing a product and placing it in the hands of the end user in a supply chain—raw material and component producers, productassemblers, wholesalers, retailer merchants and transportation companies are all members of asupply chain (La Londe and Masters 1994). By the same token, Lambert, Stock, and Ellram definea supply chain as the alignment of firms that brings products or services to market. Note that theseconcepts of supply chain include the final consumer as part of the supply chain.Another definition notes a supply chain is the network of organizations that are involved,through upstream and downstream linkages, in the different processes and activities that produce valuein the form of products and services delivered to the ultimate consumer (Christopher 1992). Inother words, a supply chain consists of multiple firms, both upstream (i.e., supply) and downstream(i.e., distribution), and the ultimate consumer.JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 3Given these definitions, for the purposes of this paper, a supply chain is defined as a set of threeor more entities (organizations or individuals) directly involved in the upstream and downstream flowsof products, services, finances, and/or information from a source to a customer.Encompassed within this definition, we can identify three degrees of supply chain complexity:a “direct supply chain,” an “extended supply chain,” and an “ultimate supply chain.” A direct supply chain consists of a company, a supplier, and a customer involved in the upstream and/or downstream flows of products, services, finances, and/or information (Figure 1a). An extended supply chainincludes suppliers of the immediate supplier and customers of the immediate customer, all involvedin the upstream and/or downstream flows of products, services, finances, and/or information (Figure1b). An ultimate supply chain includes all the organizations involved in all the upstream anddownstream flows of products, services, finances, and information from the ultimate supplier to theultimate customer.Figure 1c illustrates the complexity that ultimate supply chains can reach. In this example, a thirdparty financial provider may be providing financing, assuming some of the risk, and offering financial advice; a third party logistics (3PL) provider is performing the logistics activities between twoof the companies; and a market research firm is providing information about the ultimate customerto a company well back up the supply chain. This very briefly illustrates some of the many functionsthat complex supply chains can and do perform.Although we will address this point in greater depth later in this paper, it is important to realize that implicit within these definitions is the fact that supply chains exist whether they are managedor not. If none of the organizations in Figure 1 actively implements any of the concepts discussed inthis paper to manage the supply chain, the supply chain—as a phenomenon of business—still exists.Thus, we draw a definite distinction between supply chains as phenomena that exist in business andthe management of those supply chains. The former is simply something that exists (often alsoreferred to as distribution channels), while the latter requires overt management efforts by theorganizations within the supply chain.Given the potential for countless alternative supply chain configurations, it is important tonote that any one organization can be part of numerous supply chains. Wal-Mart, for example, canbe part of the supply chain for candy, for clothing, for hardware, and for many other products. Thismultiple supply chain phenomenon begins to explain the network nature that many supply chains possess. For example, AT&T might find Motorola to be a customer in one supply chain, a partner in another,a supplier in a third, and a competitor in still a fourth supply chain.Note also that within our definition of supply chain, the final consumer is considered a member of the supply chain. This point is important because it recognizes that retailers such as Wal-Martcan be part of the upstream and downstream flows that constitute a supply chain.4 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAFIGURE 1TYPES OF CHANNEL RELATIONSHIPSDefinitions of Supply Chain ManagementAlthough definitions of SCM differ across authors (see Table 1 for a representative sample), theycan be classified into three categories: a management philosophy, implementation of a managementphilosophy, and a set of management processes. The alternative definitions and the categories theyrepresent suggest that the term “supply chain management” presents a source of confusion for thoseinvolved in researching the phenomena, as well as those attempting to establish a supply chainapproach to management. Research and practice would be improved if a single definition wereadopted. JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 5TABLE 1DEFINITIONS OF SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT Monczka, Trent, and Handfield (1998)SCM requires traditionally separate materials functions to reportto an executive responsible for coordinating the entire materialsprocess, and also requires joint relationships with suppliersacross multiple tiers. SCM is a concept, “whose primary objective is to integrate and manage the sourcing, flow, and control ofmaterials using a total systems perspective across multiple functions and multiple tiers of suppliers.”La Londe and Masters (1994)Supply chain strategy includes: “… two or more firms in a supply chain entering into a long-term agreement; … the development of trust and commitment to the relationship; … theintegration of logistics activities involving the sharing ofdemand and sales data; … the potential for a shift in the locus ofcontrol of the logistics process.”Stevens (1989)“The objective of managing the supply chain is to synchronizethe requirements of the customer with the flow of materials fromsuppliers in order to effect a balance between what are oftenseen as conflicting goals of high customer service, low inventory management, and low unit cost.”Houlihan (1988)Differences between supply chain management and classicalmaterials and manufacturing control: “1) The supply chain isviewed as a single process. Responsibility for the various segments in the chain is not fragmented and relegated to functionalareas such as manufacturing, purchasing, distribution, and sales.2) Supply chain management calls for, and in the end dependson, strategic decision making. “Supply” is a shared objective ofpractically every function in the chain and is of particular strategic significance because of its impact on overall costs and market share. 3) Supply chain management calls for a differentperspective on inventories which are used as a balancing mechanism of last, not first, resort. 4) A new approach to systems isrequired—integration rather than interfacing.”Jones and Riley (1985)“Supply chain management deals with the total flow of materials from suppliers through end users…”Cooper et al. (1997)Supply chain management is “… an integrative philosophy tomanage the total flow of a distribution channel from supplier tothe ultimate user.” 6 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIASCM as a Management PhilosophyAs a philosophy, SCM takes a systems approach to viewing the supply chain as a single entity,rather than as a set of fragmented parts, each performing its own function (Ellram and Cooper 1990;Houlihan 1988; Tyndall et al. 1998). In other words, the philosophy of supply chain managementextends the concept of partnerships into a multifirm effort to manage the total flow of goods from thesupplier to the ultimate customer (Ellram 1990; Jones and Riley 1985). Thus, SCM is a set ofbeliefs that each firm in the supply chain directly and indirectly affects the performance of all the othersupply chain members, as well as ultimate, overall supply chain performance (Cooper et al. 1997).SCM as a management philosophy seeks synchronization and convergence of intrafirm and interfirm operational and strategic capabilities into a unified, compelling marketplace force (Ross 1998).SCM as an integrative philosophy directs supply chain members to focus on developing innovativesolutions to create unique, individualized sources of customer value. Langley and Holcomb (1992)suggest that the objective of SCM should be the synchronization of all supply chain activities to createcustomer value. Thus, SCM philosophy suggests the boundaries of SCM include not only logisticsbut also all other functions within a firm and within a supply chain to create customer value andsatisfaction. In this context, understanding customers’values and requirements is essential (Ellramand Cooper 1990; Tyndall et al. 1998). In other words, SCM philosophy drives supply chain membersto have a customer orientation.Based upon the literature review, it is proposed that SCM as a management philosophy has thefollowing characteristics:1. A systems approach to viewing the supply chain as a whole, and to managing the total flowof goods inventory from the supplier to the ultimate customer;2. Astrategic orientation toward cooperative efforts to synchronize and converge intrafirm andinterfirm operational and strategic capabilities into a unified whole; and3. Acustomer focus to create unique and individualized sources of customer value, leading tocustomer satisfaction.SCM as a Set of Activities to Implement a Management PhilosophyIn adopting a supply chain management philosophy, firms must establish management practices that permit them to act or behave consistently with the philosophy. As such, many authors havefocused on the activities that constitute supply chain management. This previous research has suggested various activities necessary to successfully implement a SCM philosophy (see Table 2).JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 7TABLE 2SCM ACTIVITIES 1. Integrated Behavior2. Mutually Sharing Information3. Mutually Sharing Risks and Rewards4. Cooperation5. The Same Goal and the Same Focus on Serving Customers6. Integration of Processes7. Partners to Build and Maintain Long-Term Relationships Bowersox and Closs (1996) argued that to be fully effective in today’s competitive environment,firms must expand their integrated behavior to incorporate customers and suppliers. This extensionof integrated behaviors, through external integration, is referred to by Bowersox and Closs as supplychain management. In this context, the philosophy of SCM turns into the implementation of supplychain management: a set of activities that carries out the philosophy. This set of activities is acoordinated effort called supply chain management between the supply chain partners, such assuppliers, carriers, and manufacturers, to dynamically respond to the needs of the end customer(Greene 1991).Related to integrated behavior, mutually sharing information among supply chain membersis required to implement a SCM philosophy, especially for planning and monitoring processes(Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Novack, Langley,and Rinehart 1995; Tyndall et al. 1998). Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh emphasized frequent informationupdating among the chain members for effective supply chain management. The Global LogisticsResearch Team at Michigan State University (1995) defines information sharing as the willingnessto make strategic and tactical data available to other members of the supply chain. Open sharing ofinformation such as inventory levels, forecasts, sales promotion strategies, and marketing strategiesreduces the uncertainty between supply partners and results in enhanced performance (Andel 1997;Lewis and Talalayevsky 1997; Lusch and Brown 1996; Salcedo and Grackin 2000).Effective SCM also requires mutually sharing risks and rewards that yield a competitive advantage (Cooper and Ellram 1993). Risk and reward sharing should happen over the long term (Cooperet al. 1997). Risk and reward sharing is important for long-term focus and cooperation among the supplychain members (Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990;Novack, Langley, and Rinehart 1995; Tyndall et al. 1998).Cooperation among the supply chain members is required for effective SCM (Ellram andCooper 1990; Tyndall et al. 1998). Cooperation refers to similar or complementary, coordinated8 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAactivities performed by firms in a business relationship to produce superior mutual outcomes or singularoutcomes that are mutually expected over time (Anderson and Narus 1990). Cooperation is notlimited to the needs of the current transaction and happens at several management levels (e.g., bothtop and operational managers), involving cross-functional coordination across the supply chainmembers (Cooper et al. 1997).Joint action in close relationships refers to carrying out the focal activities in a cooperative orcoordinated way (Heide and John 1990). Cooperation starts with joint planning and ends with jointcontrol activities to evaluate performance of the supply chain members, as well as the supply chainas a whole (Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Novack,Langley, and Rinehart 1995; Spekman 1988; Tyndall et al. 1998). Joint planning and evaluation involveongoing processes over multiple years (Cooper et al. 1997). In addition to planning and control, cooperation is needed to reduce supply chain inventories and pursue supply chain-wide cost efficiencies(Cooper et al. 1997; Dowst 1988). Furthermore, supply chain members should work together onnew product development and product portfolio decisions (Drozdowski 1986). Finally, design of qualitycontrol and delivery systems is also a joint action (Treleven 1987).La Londe and Masters proposed that a supply chain succeeds if all the members of the supplychain have the same goal and the same focus on serving customers. Establishing the same goaland the same focus among supply chain members is a form of policy integration. Lassar and Zinn (1995)suggested that successful relationships aim to integrate supply chain policy to avoid redundancy andoverlap, while seeking a level of cooperation that allows participants to be more effective at lowercost levels. Policy integration is possible if there are compatible cultures and management techniquesamong the supply chain members.The implementation of SCM needs the integration of processes from sourcing, to manufacturing, and to distribution across the supply chain (Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Novack, Langley, and Rinehart 1995; Tyndall et al. 1998). Integration can be accomplished through cross-functional teams, in-plant supplier personnel, and thirdparty service providers (Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper1990; Manrodt, Holcomb, and Thompson 1997; Novack, Langley, and Rinehart 1995; Tyndall et al.1998).Stevens (1989) identified four stages of supply chain integration and discussed the planning andoperating implications of each stage:Stage 1) Represents the base line case. The supply chain is a function of fragmented operationswithin the individual company and is characterized by staged inventories, independent and incompatible control systems and procedures, and functional segregation.Stage 2) Begins to focus internal integration, characterized by an emphasis on cost reductionrather than performance improvement, buffer inventory, initial evaluations of internal trade-offs,and reactive customer service.JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 9Stage 3) Reaches toward internal corporate integration and characterized by full visibility ofpurchasing through distribution, medium-term planning, tactical rather than strategic focus,emphasis on efficiency, extended use of electronics support for linkages, and a continuedreactive approach to customers.Stage 4) Achieves supply chain integration by extending the scope of integration outside thecompany to embrace suppliers and customers.Effective SCM is made up of a series of partnerships and, thus, SCM requires partners to buildand maintain long-term relationships (Cooper et al. 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Tyndall et al.1998). Cooper et al. believe the relationship time horizon extends beyond the life of the contract—perhaps indefinitely—and, at the same time, the number of partners should be small to facilitateincreased cooperation.Gentry and Vellenga (1996) argue that it is not usual that all of the primary activities in a chain—inbound and outbound logistics, operations, marketing, sales, and service—will be performed by anyone firm to maximize customer value. Thus, forming strategic alliances with supply chain partnerssuch as suppliers, customers, or intermediaries (e.g., transportation and/or warehousing services) provides competitive advantage through creating customer value (Langley and Holcomb 1992).SCM as a Set of Management ProcessesAs opposed to a focus on the activities that constitute supply chain management, other authorshave focused on management processes. Davenport (1993) defines processes as a structured and measured set of activities designed to produce specific output for a particular customer or market. La Londeproposes that SCM is the process of managing relationships, information, and materials flow acrossenterprise borders to deliver enhanced customer service and economic value through synchronizedmanagement of the flow of physical goods and associated information from sourcing to consumption. Ross defines supply chain process as the actual physical business functions, institutions, and operations that characterize the way a particular supply chain moves goods and services to marketthrough the supply pipeline. In other words, a process is a specific ordering of work activities acrosstime and place, with a beginning, an end, clearly identified inputs and outputs, and a structure for action(Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Novack, Langley,and Rinehart 1995; Tyndall et al. 1998).Lambert, Stock, and Ellram (1998) propose that, to successfully implement SCM, all firms withina supply chain must overcome their own functional silos and adopt a process approach. Thus, all thefunctions within a supply chain are reorganized as key processes. The critical differences betweenthe traditional functions and the process approach are that the focus of every process is on meetingthe customer’s requirements and that the firm is organized around these processes (Cooper et al. 1997;Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Novack, Langley, and Rinehart 1995;Tyndall et al. 1998). Lambert, Stock, and Ellram suggest the key processes typically include customer10 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIArelationship management, customer service management, demand management, order fulfillment,manufacturing flow management, procurement, and product development and commercialization.SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT VERSUS SUPPLY CHAIN ORIENTATIONAlthough these perspectives on defining supply chain management are helpful, a careful examination of them indicates the literature is actually trying to define two concepts with one term, i.e.,supply chain management. The idea of viewing the coordination of a supply chain from an overallsystem perspective, with each of the tactical activities of distribution flows seen within a broader strategic context (what has been called SCM as a management philosophy) is more accurately called aSupply Chain Orientation. The actual implementation of this orientation, across various companies in the supply chain, is more appropriately called Supply Chain Management.This perspective leads us to the definition of one of these crucial constructs. Supply ChainOrientation is defined as the recognition by an organization of the systemic, strategic implicationsof the tactical activities involved in managing the various flows in a supply chain. Thus, a companypossesses a supply chain orientation (SCO) if its management can see the implications of managingthe upstream and downstream flows of products, services, finances, and information across their suppliers and their customers. From this definition, a company does not have a supply chain orientationif it only sees the systemic, strategic implications in one direction. Thus, in Figure 1a, the companyin the middle of the direct supply chain may have a SCO, but the two companies on the ends do not(because the supplier is only focused down the supply chain—an historical “channels” orientation—and the customer is only focused up the supply chain—an historical “procurement” orientation).Further, this does not mean the firm with the SCO can implement it—such implementationrequires a SCO across several companies directly connected in the supply chain. The firm with theSCO may implement individual, disjointed supply chain tactics (such as Just-In-Time delivery, orElectronic Data Interchange with suppliers and customers), but this is not Supply Chain Managementunless they are coordinated (a strategic orientation) over the supply chain (a systemic orientation).The implementation of a SCO requires several companies in the supply chain to utilize theprocesses discussed in the previous section to realize the activities listed in Table 2. Supply ChainManagement is the implementation of a supply chain orientation across suppliers and customers. Companies implementing SCM must first have a supply chain orientation. In the extended supply chainin Figure 1b, all of the companies involved have a supply chain orientation, except the first supplierand the last customer. Since the first supplier is only focused on its customer and since the lastcustomer is only focused on its supplier, neither can be said to have an upstream and downstreamorientation.In other words, a Supply Chain Orientation is a management philosophy, and Supply Chain Management is the sum total of all the overt management actions undertaken to realize that philosophy.This leads us closer to understanding and defining Supply Chain Management. However, before weJOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 11can fully accomplish this, we must also examine the antecedents and consequences, and the scope,of supply chain management.ANTECEDENTS AND CONSEQUENCESSince supply chain relationships are typically long-term and require considerable strategiccoordination, we examine the antecedents and consequences of supply chain management at thestrategic level (see Figure 2).FIGURE 2SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT ANTECEDENTS AND CONSEQUENCESAntecedents to SCO and SCMAntecedents to SCM are the factors that enhance or impede the implementation of a SCOphilosophy. Morgan and Hunt (1994) propose that cooperation arises directly from both relationshiptrust and commitment. Moorman, Deshpande, and Zaltman (1993) define trust as a willingness torely on an exchange partner in whom one has confidence. Though both trust and commitment are essential to make cooperation work, trust is a major determinant of relationship commitment (Achrol 1991).Thus, trust has both direct and indirect relationships with cooperation. Dwyer, Schurr, and Oh(1987) emphasize the role of trust to overcome mutual difficulties such as power, conflict, and12 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAlower profitability. Therefore, it is proposed that trust has an effect on the sharing of risks andrewards.Dwyer, Schurr, and Oh define commitment as “an implicit or explicit pledge of relationalcontinuity between exchange partners.” Commitment is an essential ingredient for the successfullong-term relationships that are a component of the implementation of SCM (Gundlach, Achrol, andMentzer 1995). Lambert, Stock, and Ellram also point out that the necessary commitment ofresources and empowerment to achieve stated goals is important to implement SCM.Putting together the effects of trust and commitment, Morgan and Hunt state, “Commitment andtrust are ‘key’because they encourage marketers to (1) work at preserving relationship investmentsby cooperating with exchange partners, (2) resist attractive short-term alternatives in favor of theexpected long-term benefits of staying with existing partners, and (3) view potentially high-risk actionsas prudent because of the belief that their partners will not act opportunistically.” As such, trust andcommitment lead directly to cooperative behaviors in the implementation of a SCO across severalcompanies to achieve SCM.The mutual dependence of a firm on a partner (interdependence) refers to the firm’s need tomaintain a relationship with the partner to achieve its goals (Frazier 1983). Acknowledged dependence is a prime force in the development of supply chain solidarity (Bowersox and Closs 1996). Inaddition, this dependence is what motivates willingness to negotiate functional transfer, share keyinformation, and participate in joint operational planning (Bowersox and Closs 1996). Finally,Ganesan (1994) proposes that dependence of a firm on another firm is positively related to thefirm’s long-term relationship orientation.Corporate philosophy or culture and the management techniques of each firm in a supply chainshould be compatible for successful SCM (Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellramand Cooper 1990; Lambert, Stock, and Ellram 1998; Novack, Langley, and Rinehart 1995; Tyndallet al. 1998). Organizational compatibility is defined as complementary goals and objectives, as wellas similarity in operating philosophies and corporate cultures (Bucklin and Sengupta 1993). Bucklin and Sengupta demonstrated that organizational compatibility between the firms in an alliance hasa strong positive impact on the effectiveness of the relationship (i.e., the perception that the relationshipis productive and worthwhile). Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh also argue that the importance of corporateculture and its compatibility across supply chain members cannot be underestimated. Given our earlier definition of SCO, organizational compatibility in a supply chain means that companies must allhave a SCO to achieve SCM.Lambert, Stock, and Ellram suggest there should be an agreement on SCM vision and keyprocesses. Ross contends that the creation and communication of a market-winning competitive SCMvision shared not just by individual firms but also by the whole supply chain (SCO, by our definition) is essential before any SCM project can begin, i.e., its existence precedes (or antecedes) SCM.Visioning provides firms with specific goals and strategies on how they plan to identify and realizeJOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 13the opportunities they expect to find in the marketplace (Ross 1998). The key processes will beaddressed in greater depth in the section on the Functional Scope of SCM.In terms of power and leadership structure of a supply chain, there needs to be a firm thatassumes the leader role (Lambert, Stock, and Ellram 1998). Bowersox and Closs (1996) arguesupply chains need leaders as much as individual organizations. Ellram and Cooper propose that asupply chain leader is like a channel captain in the marketing channels literature (e.g., Stern andEl-Ansary (1988)) and plays a key role in coordinating and overseeing the whole supply chain.Bowersox and Closs suggest that, in many situations, a specific firm may function as a supply chainleader as a result of their size, economic power, customer patronage, comprehensive trade franchise,or the initiation of the inter-firm relationships.Research confirms the fact that the success of supply chain management is directly correlatedto the presence of constructive leadership capable of stimulating cooperative behavior betweenparticipating firms (Schmitz, Frankel, and Frayer 1994). However, forced participation by a strongsupply chain leader will encourage exit behavior if the opportunity exists (Cooper et al. 1997;Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Novack, Langley, and Rinehart 1995;Tyndall et al. 1998).Finally, several authors suggest top management support plays a critical role in shaping anorganization’s values, orientation, and direction (Felton 1959; Hambrick and Mason 1984; Kotter 1990;Tosti and Jackson 1990; Webster 1988). Day and Lord (1988) found that top-level managers have asubstantial impact on organizational performance. Lambert, Stock, and Ellram suggest top managementsupport, leadership, and commitment to change are important antecedents to the implementation ofSCM. In the same context, Loforte (1991) contends lack of top management support is a barrier toSCM. In Figure 2, the recognition of the importance of these antecedents by a particular companyis represented as antecedent to a SCO. When contiguous companies in a supply chain each achievea SCO, they can begin the implementation process to realize SCM. In other words, SCO is a willingnessby one company to address the issues listed in Figure 2 from a strategic, systemic perspective. Management of the supply chain is only accomplished when several companies in line in the supply chainhave that orientation and move toward implementing the management philosophy of SCO.An analogy may help at this time. Asupply chain is much like a river, with products and servicesflowing down it instead of water. Whether anyone recognizes the systemic, strategic implications ofmanaging the water basin, the river still exists. Similarly, whether any company recognizes the systemic, strategic implications of the supply chain of which they are a part, it still exists. When one statethrough which the river flows recognizes the need for states above it in the water basin to conserveand preserve the water supply and recognizes its own need to do the same for states below it, the statehas taken a systemic strategic orientation—the river equivalent of a supply chain orientation. However, without the cooperation of the states above and below it, there is little it can do about implementingthis orientation. It is only when a number of continuous states adopt such a similar orientation andactively manage the resources of the river that we can say the water basin is managed. Similarly, supply14 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAchain management can only result in a managed supply chain when several companies directlylinked in the supply chain have a SCO and actively manage to that orientation.Consequences of SCMThe motive behind the formation of a supply chain arrangement is to increase supply chain competitive advantage (Global Logistics Research Team at Michigan State University 1995; Monczka,Trent, and Handfield 1998). Porter (1985) defines two types of competitive advantage: cost leadership and differentiation. According to Giunipero and Brand (1996), improving a firm’s competitiveadvantage and profitability through SCM can be accomplished by enhancing overall customer satisfaction. By the same token, La Londe (1997) proposed that SCM aims at delivering enhanced customer service and economic value through synchronized management of the flow of physical goodsand associated information from sourcing to consumption. According to Porter, competitive advantage grows fundamentally out of the customer value a firm creates, and aims to establish a profitableand sustainable position against the forces that determine industry competition. Thus, it is proposedthat the implementation of SCM enhances customer value and satisfaction, which in turn leads toenhanced competitive advantage for the supply chain, as well as each member firm. This, ultimately, improves the profitability of the supply chain and its members.Specific objectives to improve profitability, competitive advantage, and customer value/satisfaction of a supply chain, as well as its participants, are suggested by several researchers. For example, a key objective of SCM is to lower the costs required to provide the necessary level of customerservice to a specific segment (Houlihan 1988; Jones and Riley 1985; Stevens 1989). The other keyobjective is to improve customer service through increased stock availability and reduced order cycletime (Cooper and Ellram 1993). Customer service objectives are also accomplished through acustomer-enriching supply system focused on developing innovative solutions and synchronizingthe flow of products, services, and information to create unique, individualized sources of customerservice value (Ross 1998). Finally, low cost and differentiated service help build a competitiveadvantage for the supply chain (Cavinato 1992; Cooper et al. 1997; Cooper and Ellram 1993;Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Lee and Billington 1992; Novack,Langley, and Rinehart 1995; Tyndall et al. 1998). As such, SCM is concerned with improving bothefficiency (i.e., cost reduction) and effectiveness (i.e., customer service) in a strategic context (i.e.,creating customer value and satisfaction through integrated supply chain management) to obtaincompetitive advantage that ultimately brings profitability.If we distinguish between the operational function of customer service and the resultant goalof customer value and satisfaction, this discussion leads us to conclude the consequences of SCM arelower costs and improved customer value and satisfaction to achieve competitive advantage. Industry reports support this contention (Performance Management Group 2001).JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 15SCOPEThe scope of SCM is functional and organizational. The functional scope of SCM refers to whichtraditional business functions are included or excluded in the implementation and the process ofSCM. The organizational scope of SCM concerns what kinds of inter-firm relationships are relevantto the participating firms in the implementation and the process of SCM.Functional Scope of SCMSince process refers to the combination of a particular set of functions to get a specific output,all of the traditional business functions should be included in the process of SCM. The supply chainconcept originated in the logistics literature, and logistics has continued to have a significant impacton the SCM concept (Bowersox, Carter, and Monczka 1985; Dwyer, Schurr, and Oh 1987; Jones andRiley 1985; Monczka, Trent, and Handfield 1998). In this context, Tyndall et al. (1998) propose that“SCM logistics” is the art of managing the flow of materials and products from source to user.SCM—or the logistics system— includes the total flow of materials, from the acquisition of raw materials to delivery of finished products to the ultimate users, as well as the related counter-flows ofinformation that both control and record material movement.According to Lambert, Stock, and Ellram (1998), however, there exist important differencesbetween the definition of supply chain management and the Council of Logistics Management’s (1985)definition of logistics: “Logistics is the process of planning, implementing and controlling theefficient flow and storage of raw materials, in-process inventory, finished goods, services, andrelated information from point of origin to point of consumption (including inbound, outbound, internaland external movements) for the purpose of conforming to customer requirements.” CLM (1998)apparently agreed, since its new definition states, “Logistics is that part of the supply chain processthat plans, implements, and controls the efficient flow and storage of goods, services, and related information from the point of origin to the point of consumption in order to meet customers’requirements”(emphasis added). Thus, CLM has also distinguished between logistics and supply chain management, and acknowledged that logistics is one of the functions contained within supply chainmanagement.Ross explains that the role of logistics spans from warehousing and transportation to integrating the logistics operations of the entire supply chain, whereas SCM merges marketing and manufacturing with distribution functions to provide the enterprise with new sources of competitiveadvantage (Ross 1998). Logistics puts more emphasis on efficient movement and storage to fulfillcustomer requirements. Customer value and satisfaction that help a supply chain improve competitive advantage and profitability, however, require more than logistics (Giunipero and Brand 1996).Thus, Cooper, Lambert, and Pagh (1997) argued SCM is more comprehensive than logistics sothat SCM means the management of multiple business processes, including logistics processes.Marketing research, promotion, sales, information gathering, research and development, product16 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAdesign, new product development, and total systems/value analysis should also be included (Bechteland Jayaram 1997; Bowersox 1997; Ellram and Cooper 1990; Mentzer 1993; Tyndall et al. 1998).We can conclude that the functional scope of SCM encompasses all the traditional intrabusiness functions, and these will be addressed more fully in the later discussion of Figure 3.Organizational Scope of SCMAccording to Christopher (1992), leading-edge companies have realized the real competitionis not company against company, but rather supply chain against supply chain. Cooper, Lambert, andPagh argue that organizational relationships tie firms to each other and may tie their success to thesupply chain as a whole. In this context, a supply chain as a whole may have its own identity and function like an independent firm. However, to accomplish this ultimate supply chain, all companies inthe supply chain must have a supply chain orientation. The result is a fully managed supply chain.Ellram and Cooper suggest that effective supply chain management is made up of a series of partnerships among firms working together and mutually sharing information, risks, and rewards that yielda competitive advantage. In the same article, Ellram and Cooper also contend the successful supplychain relies on forming strategic partnerships with long-term orientations. Christopher suggests a network of organizations, through upstream and downstream linkages, as the organization for SCM.According to Webster (1992), networks are the complex, multifaceted organizational structuresthat result from multiple strategic alliances. Thus, it is proposed that a network is a well-recognizedorganization for SCM. The basic characteristic of a network organization is a confederation— a looseand flexible coalition guided from a hub where the key functions include development and managementof the alliances themselves, coordination of financial resources and technology, definition and management of core competencies and strategies, development of relationships with customers, andmanagement of information resources that bind the network (Webster 1992).From this discussion, and given our earlier definition of supply chains, we see the organizationalscope of SCM as the implementation and process of SCM across three or more companies, all of whichmust have a SCO. This implementation and process must also include the systemic, strategic management of the activities listed in Table 2. This organizational scope is illustrated in the SupplyChain Management box of Figure 2.DEFINING SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENTIn this paper, issues and facets concerning the definitions of supply chain management—as wellas the supply chain, the antecedents and consequences of SCM, and the boundaries of SCM— werediscussed. The relationships between all these are illustrated in Figure 2.Although, historically, the term supply chain management has a number of definitions, webelieve it is possible to develop a single, encompassing definition of SCM. Reviewing the literatureillustrated that supply chain management involves multiple firms, multiple business activities, andthe coordination of those activities across functions and across firms in the supply chain. PullingJOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 17together these disparate aspects of supply chain management, for the purposes of this paper, supplychain management is defined as the systemic, strategic coordination of the traditional business functions and the tactics across these business functions within a particular company and across businesses within the supply chain, for the purposes of improving the long-term performance of theindividual companies and the supply chain as a whole.This definition implies much about the management of a supply chain, and led to the development of the conceptual model illustrated in Figure 3. Asupply chain can be pictured as a pipeline, withFigure 3 illustrating a view of the pipeline from the side, showing directional supply chain flows (products, services, financial resources, the information associated with these flows, and the informationalflows of demand and forecasts). The traditional business functions of marketing, sales, research anddevelopment, forecasting, production, procurement, logistics, information technology, finance, andcustomer service manage and accomplish these flows from the supplier’s suppliers through thecustomer’s customers to ultimately provide value and satisfy the customer. Figure 3 also shows thecritical role of customer value and satisfaction to achieve competitive advantage and profitability forthe individual companies in the supply chain, and the supply chain as a whole.To fully examine this definition and model, the role of individual business functions, and howthey are coordinated across functions and across companies, should be examined. Inter-functionalcoordination includes an examination of the roles of trust, commitment, risk, and dependence on theviability of internal functional sharing and coordination. Inter-corporate coordination includesfunctional shifting within the supply chain, the role of various types of third party providers, howrelationships between companies should be managed, and the viability of different supply chainstructures. Finally, how all these phenomena vary in different global settings is relevant and, thus,represented in Figure 3.18 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIAFIGURE 3A MODEL OF SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENTCONCLUSIONSThere are several contributions of this paper to the knowledge of supply chain management. First,it provides an integrative framework of the phenomenon called SCM. As such, it should help practitioners as well as researchers understand SCM, give guidance to what SCM is, its prerequisites, andpotential effects on business and supply chain performance. Without a clear understanding of SCM,we cannot expect wide application of SCM in practice or research.Thus, the frameworks in Figures 2 and 3 have considerable applicability for practitioners. Figure 2 provides guidance as to the preconditions that need to be in place in order for a company to implement supply chain management with its suppliers and customers. Figure 3 should serve as a guide andreminder to practitioners to include all the typical business functions in supply chain managementplanning, organization, and processes. Without such inter-functional coordination, supply chainmanagement cannot achieve its full potential. The same can be said for including all the supply chainflows in any supply chain management planning, organization, or process. Figure 3 also reminds managers that we do not live in a domestic world—most supply chains are global in some respect and shouldbe managed as such. Finally, Figure 3 reminds practitioners to stay focused on the ultimate goals ofsupply chain management—lower costs, increased customer value and satisfaction, and ultimatelycompetitive advantage.For researchers, Figure 3 provides a wealth of research questions to investigate. What is the roleof each of the various business functions in supply chain management? Do these roles shift dependJOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 19ing on the company’s position in the supply chain? How can these functions be effectively coordinated within a company and across the supply chain? The flows presented in Figure 3 also raise thequestion of who in the supply chain should best manage each of these flows—in other words, shouldthere be a single supply chain leader or does this leadership role shift for different types of flows. Ifthe latter, what conditions lead to the shifting of this flow-related leadership role? In addition, the longterm performance impacts of SCM need to be examined. Finally, the area of global supply chains provides many opportunities for research into the phenomenon of supply chains, SCO, and SCM. Dothe antecedents and nature of SCM presented in Figure 2 change under and across different nationalcultures? How does supply chain management itself change across different global regions andacross different types of companies? Does the management of inter-functional coordination and intercorporate coordination change under these same cultural variations? These provide fascinatingavenues for future research.This paper also highlights the need for rigor to further develop a theoretical framework ofSCM. In addition to the research questions suggested by Figure 3, testing the antecedent, phenomenon, and consequence structure of Figure 2 would tell us much about the structure of supply chainsand supply chain management.Related to this research question is the interesting research question: How prevalent is supplychain management? Much is written about supply chain management, but no research has been published that benchmarks the degree of SCO and SCM, and the conditions under which both exist. Suchbenchmarking research is clearly needed at this point in the exploration of supply chain management,and the constructs and relationships proposed in Figures 2 and 3 are intended to guide this research.20 MENTZER, DeWITT, KEEBLER, MIN, NIX, SMITH, AND ZACHARIANOTESAchrol, Ravi S. 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He haspublished five books, and more than 140 articles and papers in the Journal of Business Logistics, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Business Research, International Journal of Physical Distributionand Logistics Management, Transportation and Logistics Review, Transportation Journal, Journalof the Academy of Marketing Science, Industrial Marketing Management, Research in Marketing,Business Horizons, and other journals.William J. DeWitt, Ph.D., is a Teaching Professor in logistics, transportation, and supplychain management at the R.H. Smith School, University of Maryland, College Park. He serves onintermodal and education committees of TRB, and has published in Transportation in the New Millennium, Transportation Journal, Logistics Technology International, Defense Transportation Journal, and Business Geographics, in addition to working for more than twenty years at BurlingtonNorthern Railroad, and also serving as vice president marketing and sales.James S. Keebler is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at the G.R. Herberger College of Business at St. Cloud State University. Dr. Keebler has over 25 years of practitioner experience in manufacturing, marketing, and logistics management across several industries. He is a co-author of thebooks, Keeping Score: Measuring the Business Value of Logistics in the Supply Chain and SupplyChain Management.Soonhong (Hong) Min is an Assistant Professor of Logistics and Marketing at Georgia Southern University. He has published in the Journal of Retailing, International Journal of Physical Distribution and Logistics Management, International Marketing Review, and is a co-author of thebook, Supply Chain Management.Nancy W. Nix is the Director of the Center for Value Chain Management at Texas ChristianUniversity. Her primary interests are global supply chain management, creating customer valuethrough logistics service quality, and management of the sales forecasting and operational planningprocess. She has extensive industry experience and has worked with multiple companies to improvethe management of supply chain activities and processes. She is a co-author of the book, Supply ChainManagement.Carlo D. Smith is an Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of San Diego. His articleshave appeared in the Journal of Business Logistics, Journal of Business Forecasting, BusinessHorizons, and the Journal of Consumer Satisfaction, Dissatisfaction and Complaining Behavior.Zach G. Zacharia is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Marketing at Texas Christian University. He has published in the Journal of Retailing, Journal of Vehicle Design, Transportation Research Record, Materials Performance, and is a co-author of the book, Supply ChainManagement.JOURNAL OF BUSINESS LOGISTICS, Vol.22, No. 2, 2001 25


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