Triple-A Supply Chain for Successful Supply Chain Management

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Triple-A Supply Chain for Successful Supply Chain Management
Anneke Zwart, Student (University), Netherlands

Many companies have a strategic focus on finding ways to continuously improve their supply chains. In such SCM, there are usually two main incentives that companies are emphasizing:
I. Speed, especially when the economy is booming and demand is high.
II. Cost-efficiency.
However, Lee (2004) found that the supply chain improvements often did not lead to improved performance as time went by. Therefore, cost-efficiency and speed maximization are not sufficient (but still needed!) in supply chain management. Lee developed the so-called Triple-A Supply Chain that takes three additional factors into account in SCM:
1. Agility: Companies should be able to quickly respond to supply and demand changes. Unexpected transformations and disruptions should be handled smoothly and cost-efficiently. They should also be able to quickly recover from catastrophes like natural disasters and epidemics.
2. Adaptability: As markets and economies develop overtime, so should companies. They should be able to adapt to the changing environment and their subsequent conditions. For example, they should be able to adjust to both political and technological changes as well as to new demographic trends.
3. Aligning: If the interests of participating companies in the supply chain differ from each other then supply chain problems evolve and performance cannot be maximized. Therefore, companies must align the needs and desires of all firms involved in the supply chain in order to be successful.
Source: Lee, H.L. (2004) “The Triple-A Supply Chain” Harvard Business Review.



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