The supply chain management concept has been fundamental to business operations for many years. It involves coordinating and managing the flow of goods, services, and information from suppliers to customers. However, the COVID-19 Pandemic has significantly disrupted the standard supply chain management models, presenting unprecedented challenges for businesses globally. As such, it is necessary to understand how the Pandemic has impacted the supply chain landscape and how businesses can adapt their operations to survive these challenging times.
The COVID-19 Pandemic has disrupted the global economy, leading to widespread economic shocks and supply chain disruptions. The Pandemic has exposed the vulnerabilities of traditional supply chain management models, highlighting the need for more flexible and adaptable approaches. As such, there is a need to explore the impact of the Pandemic on the supply chain landscape and identify new approaches that can help businesses navigate these challenging times.
Research Aim and Objectives:
- To review the standard theories and models of supply chain management and lean management.
- To examine the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the supply chain landscape, including the challenges and opportunities presented.
- To identify new approaches and strategies businesses can adopt to improve their supply chain resilience and adaptability.
- To demonstrate the ability to apply theories in the discussion of real-life examples and to provide practical recommendations for businesses seeking to adapt to the new supply chain landscape.
COVID-19 has had the most catastrophic effect on supply chains recently, causing one of the worst disruptions in human history (Ivanov & Dolgui, 2020). Its disruptions have spread throughout entire supply chain systems, with disastrous implications. It has caused a rippling impact in numerous parts of the supply chain. Several studies have found that minor disturbances in supply networks cause adverse effects. Nevertheless, the COVID-19 Pandemic has been significantly worse than any prior outbreak, disrupting supply, demand, and logistics (Singh et al., 2020).
Supply Chain and Lean Management.
The conventional supply chain management models are founded on lean management, which prioritizes the reduction of wastage and the maximization of efficacy. The models employed in contemporary business operations emphasize optimizing cost reduction, inventory management, and timely delivery of goods and services. These factors are widely acknowledged as critical components of effective business management. The Pandemic has brought to light the shortcomings of these models, particularly concerning the resilience and adaptability of supply chains. The COVID-19 outbreak has highlighted the weaknesses of conventional supply chain management frameworks, particularly regarding supply chain interruptions, inventory control, and risk mitigation Kumar (2020). The argument put forth by the authors is that businesses must embrace flexible and adaptable supply chain management methods, which entail the creation of risk management plans and the incorporation of digital technologies.
Digital transformation has been recognized as a vital element of supply chain resilience during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Ivanov’s (2020) study reveals that the Pandemic has expedited the integration of digital technologies, specifically in e-commerce, electronic payments, and data analytics. Digitalization can enhance supply chain resilience for businesses by enabling real-time data, improving supply chain visibility, and optimizing logistics operations for incredible speed and efficiency.
The COVID-19 Pandemic has also significantly impacted consumer behavior, particularly online shopping, and home delivery. The outbreak of the Pandemic has resulted in a remarkable surge in online shopping and doorstep delivery, as people are trying to reduce their chances of contracting the virus. According to the authors, businesses must adjust to evolving consumer preferences by allocating resources toward e-commerce platforms, bolstering logistics capabilities, and enhancing supply chain agility.
International Trade Theories:
The COVID-19 Pandemic has also significantly impacted international trade, particularly in terms of global supply chain disruptions and the rise of protectionist policies. The ongoing Pandemic has resulted in a substantial decrease in worldwide trade. The economic shocks caused by supply chain interruptions and border closures have been significant. According to the authors, businesses must adjust to the evolving trade patterns by broadening their supply chains, enhancing local production capabilities, and fortifying themselves against potential disruptions.
Stakeholder theory places significant emphasis on considering all stakeholders’ interests in business decision-making. These stakeholders may include suppliers, customers, employees, and communities. The COVID-19 Pandemic has brought to light the significance of stakeholder theory in supply chain management, specifically in risk management and social responsibility. Betti and Ni’s (2020) research states that businesses must implement a stakeholder-centric strategy toward supply chain management. This involves prioritizing establishing enduring relationships with suppliers and customers, advocating ethical practices, and positively impacting the local communities.
The COVID-19 Pandemic has underscored the perils associated with excessive dependence on a solitary supplier or nation, emphasizing the need to diversify supply chains. In order to address these potential hazards, commercial entities have initiated a strategy of supply chain diversification, whereby they procure materials and components from various suppliers and nations (WTO, 2021). The findings of Kumar’s (2020) research suggest that supply chain diversification can be an effective strategy for mitigating the effects of supply chain disruptions, enhancing supplier relationships, and augmenting supply chain adaptability.
Digital technologies in the realm of supply chain management include the implementation of data analytics, artificial intelligence, and blockchain technology. The digitalization process can enhance supply chain visibility, augment collaboration among supply chain partners, and optimize the velocity and efficacy of logistics operations. Araz et al. (2020) conducted a study that suggests that implementing digitalization can enhance the agility and efficacy of businesses in responding to supply chain disruptions, thereby mitigating the adverse effects of the Pandemic on their operations.
Significance of local production capacities in safeguarding the resilience of supply chains, in response to the Pandemic’s impact on supply chains, businesses have invested in local production capabilities. These investments include the establishment of new manufacturing facilities and the adoption of local sourcing strategies. Betti and Ni (2020) posit that local production investment can serve as a viable strategy for businesses to mitigate their dependence on global supply chains, enhance the expediency and efficacy of logistics operations, and bolster the resilience of their supply chains.
Mitigating the Pandemic’s impact on global supply chains is contingent upon the efficacy of collaboration among supply chain partners. In order to enhance collaborative efforts, commercial enterprises have recently implemented novel communication and collaboration tactics, such as virtual meetings, the implementation of collaborative planning procedures, and the exchange of information and resources (Shih, 2020). Shih (2020) has posited that effective collaboration can mitigate the impact of supply chain disruptions, enhance supply chain flexibility, and augment business risk management capabilities.
Case Study; Nike company
Nike Inc. is a multinational corporation headquartered in the United States that specializes in the production of sports equipment and the marketing and sales of footwear, accessories, apparel, and related products. The organization’s corporate headquarters is situated close to Beaverton, Oregon. Blue Ribbon Sports was established in 1964 by Bill Bowerman and Phil Knight. Nike, Inc. was formally recognized as a corporate entity on May 30th, 1971. The corporation provides sponsorship not only to renowned athletes but also to numerous sports teams across the globe. The organization is currently developing and maintaining its widely acknowledged brand identity, “Just Do It” (Nike, 2021).
Nike has established distribution channels and retail locations in over 170 nations. At present, the organization has a workforce of over 44,000 individuals globally. According to Nike (2021), the brand was appraised at $19 billion in 2014, making it the most valuable brand in the sports industry. The corporation primarily focuses on developing athletic footwear intended primarily for athletes. However, most of its merchandise is commonly utilized for casual purposes. In addition to footwear, the corporation distributes various commodities such as electronic gadgets, hand coverings, golf equipment, luggage, chronometers, and numerous other items.
The corporation experienced significant growth due to its practical organizational framework, adept supply chain management, astute marketing tactics, and well-designed training initiatives (The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2019). Similar to numerous other corporations, Nike encountered setbacks in various aspects. The COVID-19 Pandemic significantly impacted Nike’s distribution, logistics operations, and third-party manufacturing. According to the July 2020 annual report, the net income experienced a 40% decrease before tax imposition, compared to the $2.9 billion of the previous year. As a result of the ongoing Pandemic, the corporation was compelled to close a significant number of its retail establishments worldwide (Riley, 2021). The inventory witnessed a 31% surge, reaching a value of $7.4 billion, in contrast to its value of $5.6 billion after the fiscal year 2019. The company experienced reduced shipments to wholesalers, a shortage of labor, and other supply chain disruptions. These factors negatively impacted the company’s ability to meet supply and demand, resulting in increased costs for production and distribution (Nike, 2021).
In response to the critical phase of the Pandemic, the company devised a plan to broaden its digital strategy and prioritize direct online sales. The company’s performance exhibited a significant increase. According to Nike’s 2021 report, the Nike Brand Digital channel experienced a significant growth rate of 79% on a currency objective basis, making it the fastest-growing channel. The company employed various strategies to manage inventory, including canceling factory orders, repurposing products to fulfill online orders for physical stores, and implementing substantial price reductions. The COVID-19 Pandemic has increased expenses related to unfulfilled purchase orders, leading to a rise in inventory obsolescence (Pacheco, 2021). Reduced wholesale shipments led to a broader distribution of supply chain costs, resulting in a significant decline in profit margins.
The corporation endeavored to enhance its delivery process by implementing a more agile supply chain infrastructure that brings the merchandise closer to the end-users. During the Pandemic, the organization depended on radio-frequency identification technology (RFID) (Pacheco, 2021). Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology employs miniature radio components embedded in labels to identify and track footwear and apparel automatically. According to a report by CNBC in 2021, the company successfully tracked one billion units with a readability rate of 99.9% during supply chain disruptions (Adamek, 2022). The company aims to reduce inventory and transportation costs by implementing RFID technology. This strategy leverages the data acquired through the company’s acquisition in 2019. By implementing this strategy, the organization could gain a competitive edge in its supply chain by leveraging predictive demand forecasting and optimizing inventory placement to facilitate efficient and timely delivery to customers. The potential for additional benefits to be gained by the strategic wholesalers of the company is suggested by recent reporting from CNBC (2021), which posits that such benefits could accrue over time.
Therefore, it can be asserted that Nike, a company that caters to consumers, altered its supply chains amidst the Pandemic to accommodate its customers confined to their homes due to the closure of their workplaces and educational institutions. The organization employed the Slack platform integrated within their supply chain operations, in conjunction with pre-existing information technology investments, to facilitate tracking their constituent components, raw materials, and final goods (Nike, 2021a). The corporation disclosed that its personnel exhibited exceptional performance amidst the Pandemic. The organization has implemented measures to reduce expenses or accelerate investments in artificial intelligence.
The current Pandemic represents a significant disruption of unprecedented magnitude within the lean and supply chain industry. All companies, including suppliers, original equipment producers, distributors, and service providers, have experienced some impact. The rapid transmission of the virus was not limited to China but extended to various regions across the globe, resulting in numerous supply chains being adversely impacted. In light of the pandemic-induced disruption to lean and supply chain management, companies have endeavored to comprehend the situation and explore potential solutions to mitigate the issue.
The Pandemic has presented significant challenges to the fundamental principles of lean and supply chain management. In recent years, there has been a significant improvement in mechanisms for achieving supply chain visibility. This development has proven advantageous for companies seeking to overcome the challenges associated with supply chain management. Despite the enormity of the issue, companies possess the capacity to scrutinize the hazards inherent in their supply chain and subsequently enhance their mitigation procedures. Hence, enterprises that acknowledge the idiosyncratic supply risks and proactively manage them can identify suitable remedies or, at the very least, mitigate their impact.
Adamek, D. (2022). Nike’s digital supply chain helps keep it running. [online] CFO Brew. Available at: https://www.cfobrew.com/stories/2022-07-26-nike-digital-supply-chain.
Agrawal, S., Jamwal, A. and Gupta, S. (2020). Effect of COVID-19 on the Indian Economy and Supply Chain. www.preprints.org. [online] doi:https://doi.org/10.20944/preprints202005.0148.v1.
Araz, O.M., Choi, T., Olson, D.L. and Salman, F.S. (2020). Data Analytics for Operational Risk Management. Decision Sciences, 51(6). doi:https://doi.org/10.1111/deci.12443.
Betti, F. and Ni, J. (2020). How China can rebuild global supply chain resilience after COVID-19. [online] World Economic Forum. Available at: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/03/coronavirus-and-global-supply-chains/.
Hammad, H.M., Nauman, H.M.F., Abbas, F., Jawad, R., Farhad, W., Shahid, M., Bakhat, H.F., Farooque, A.A., Mubeen, M., Fahad, S. and Cerda, A. (2023). Impacts of COVID-19 Pandemic on environment, society, and food security. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-023-25714-1.
Handfield, R., Sun, H. and Rothenberg, L. (2020). Assessing supply chain risk for apparel production in low cost countries using newsfeed analysis. Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 25(6), pp.803–821. doi:https://doi.org/10.1108/scm-11-2019-0423.
Ivanov, D. (2020). Predicting the Impacts of Epidemic Outbreaks on Global Supply chains: a simulation-based Analysis on the Coronavirus Outbreak (COVID-19/SARS-CoV-2) Case. Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, [online] 136(1), p.101922. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tre.2020.101922.
Kumar, D. (2020). COVID19 and Business: Challenges, Opportunities and Emerging Trends. [online] papers.ssrn.com. Available at: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3601517.
Nike (2021a). Nike at risk of supply chain issues due to Covid-19. [online] Just Style. Available at: https://www.just-style.com/news/nike-supply-chain-issues-covid/.
Nike (2021b). Nike at risk of supply chain issues due to Covid-19. [online] Just Style. Available at: https://www.just-style.com/news/nike-supply-chain-issues-covid/.
Pacheco, I. (2021). Nike’s Revenue Pinched by Supply-Chain Disruptions. Wall Street Journal. [online] September 23rd Available at: https://www.wsj.com/articles/nikes-revenue-pinched-by-supply-chain-disruptions-11632434721.
Paul, S.K. and Chowdhury, P. (2020). Strategies for Managing the Impacts of Disruptions During COVID-19: an Example of Toilet Paper. Global Journal of Flexible Systems Management, [online] 21(3), pp.283–293. doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/s40171-020-00248-4.
Riley, C. (2021). Nike is trying to outrun Supply Chain Problems. [online] The Atlanta Voice. Available at: https://theatlantavoice.com/nike-is-trying-to-outrun-supply-chain-problems/.
Shih, W.C. (2020). Global Supply Chains in a Post-Pandemic World. [online] Harvard Business Review. Available at: https://hbr.org/2020/09/global-supply-chains-in-a-post-pandemic-world.
Singh, S., Kumar, R., Panchal, R. and Tiwari, M.K. (2020). Impact of COVID-19 on logistics systems and disruptions in food supply chain. International Journal of Production Research, [online] 59(7), pp.1–16. doi:https://doi.org/10.1080/00207543.2020.1792000.
The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica (2019). Nike, Inc. | History & Facts. In: Encyclopædia Britannica. [online] Available at: https://www.britannica.com/topic/Nike-Inc.
WTO (2021). WTO and IMF heads call for lifting trade restrictions on medical supplies and food. [online] IMF. Available at: https://www.imf.org/en/News/Articles/2020/04/24/pr20187-wto-and-imf-joint-statement-on-trade-and-the-covid-19-response [Accessed May 19th 2020].
Potential Solutions To Job Loss Due To Automation For A Stable Society Essay Sample For College
The swift technological advancement has transformed the job market by generating new job opportunities and rendering some skills outdated simultaneously. Therefore, workers are at risk of being unemployed as a result of automation, as Darrell M. West predicts in his, The Future of Work book. In addition, Andrew Yang, an ex-presidential aspirant, also believes that the technological trends are alarming and has called for new solutions to prevent an extraordinary crisis. In my view, the solution to the unemployment caused by automation is a mixture of interventions like reskilling, implementing the universal basic income, and increasing investment in training and education plans. This essay assesses the possible solutions that can be used to ensure that society can survive amidst the growing use of robots and Artificial Intelligence and related problems.
In the first chapter of The Future of Work, West explores the problem of joblessness and its effect on the economy. West argues that new technologies like robotics and artificial intelligence are swiftly changing the workplace, resulting in declining demand for some skills and jobs. The technological unemployment phenomenon will likely deteriorate in the future, with an approximated 1 to 3 employees at risk of unemployment due to automation in the next twelve years. Moreover, West suggests that while new opportunities will be generated in the future, these will need different qualifications and skills, leaving many American employees behind. As a result, this situation needs innovative approaches to reskill employees and give them the necessary tools to adapt to the evolving job market.
Andrew Yang proposes one possible response to this issue as the execution of universal basic income (UBI). He claims that universal basic income is necessary to give a safety net for employees whose jobs are taken by automation. According to him, UBI would give them a definite income that would assist them in affording their basic living or the freedom to pursue other courses and obtain new skill sets. Moreover, universal basic income would arouse the economy by offering a source of demand and raising people’s expenditure, generating new job openings. West backs this idea by stating that “society must create more mechanisms for providing social protection to workers and citizens (West 7).” Nevertheless, universal basic income is not an all-inclusive solution to the issue of automation. Therefore, investing in training programs that enrich people with novel skills and prepare employees for future jobs is essential.
As West pronounces, “Skills development must become an integral part of work and education policy (West 7).” One way of actualizing this could be by creating partnerships with employee-educational institutions that offer employees the required skills to thrive in the upcoming job market. Another solution that can be executed is passing policies that promote the creation of new businesses and job segments. For instance, West states the significance of investing in green technologies and renewable energy, which can generate millions of new opportunities and simultaneously reduce the consequences of climate change. These strategies will generate new opportunities for employees and mitigate the loss of jobs to automation in the current job market. Moreover, designing a more elastic labor market that enables employees to cope with the evolving job qualifications and a safety net that offers support amidst the transition is critical.
West discusses Yang’s ideas about organizational culture and management in the fourth chapter of The Future of Work. Per West, conventional hierarchical management structures are no longer efficient in the ever-changing business atmosphere, and firms must assume a more aggressive, decentralized management strategy (West 65). He argues that firms must prioritize worker empowerment and engagement and develop a culture that embraces innovation, experimentation, and risk-taking. An important aspect of West’s tactic is the notion of ‘holacracy.’ This idea replaces conventional hierarchies with roles and self-organization. Moreover, in this system, workers are offered more freedom to make choices that impact their work and the entire firm. The ‘holacracy’ approach is created to improve worker innovation and engagement while mitigating bureaucracy and increasing organizational agility.
An extra key idea of West’s strategy is the significance of company culture. He argues that a robust company culture is vital for attracting and retaining skilled employees and developing a sense of belonging and purpose among workers (West 72). In order to build a firm company culture, West stresses the significance of legitimacy, transparency, and values alignment. Therefore, firms must be open about their plans and goals and communicate transparently with workers. Furthermore, they must be legitimate and authentic in their words and actions and align their values with their workers. West’s main argument in chapter four of The Future of Work is that businesses prioritizing organizational agility, employee empowerment, or robust company culture have high chances of long-term success and retaining or attracting top talents.
In Chapter 8, West expounds on the effects of artificial intelligence on the economy and employment. West expounds on the ideas of Yang by predicting that “AI will impact all industries, and the most significant impact will be on jobs that are routine and repetitive (West 121). He further claims that while artificial intelligence will create new jobs, it will also eradicate current jobs, causing a dramatic change in the job market. Moreover, West highlights the significance of retraining and upskilling employees to stay competitive. He states that “workers will need to adapt to new technologies and become more skilled in areas machines cannot do, such as creativity, empathy, and human interaction (West 125). West’s ideas are backed by Yang, who argues that “we need to prepare our workforce for jobs that do not yet exist, using technologies that have not yet been invented, to solve problems that we do not even know are problems yet (West 123). Furthermore, West discusses the role of lawmakers in solving problems related to artificial intelligence. He states lawmakers should prioritize pushing policies that encourage investment in training programs to help employees transition to emerging industries and jobs. Furthermore, West emphasizes the need to promote innovation and entrepreneurship to generate new openings.
In addition to these strategies, there are possibilities for creating new industries and jobs that are associated with recent technologies. The eighth chapter of The Future of Work West claims “many jobs and industries that are emerging due to technological change (West 125).” For instance, creating self-driving vehicles will lead to new data analysis, engineering, and software development openings. Besides, advancing the renewable energy industry will generate employment in wind turbine maintenance, solar panel installation, and energy storage technology. Therefore, by investing in these upcoming industries, ne jobs can be generated for employees whose skills might be rendered obsolete by automation.
In conclusion, robotics and Artificial intelligence pose a significant problem to society’s stability, endangering millions of employees’ lives. Nevertheless, it presents an opportunity to generate new industries and jobs to drive economic advancement and enhance the quality of life. In order to deal with these problems, it is vital to implement a mixture of interventions like reskilling, investing in education programs, and initiating universal basic income. Moreover, it is vital to encourage firms to invest in their workers and design a more elastic labor market that allows employees to adapt to evolving job demands. By taking these measures, society will be able to thrive and operate well in the wake of technological advancement.
West, Darrell M. The future of work: Robots, AI, and automation. Brookings Institution Press, 2018.
Preschool Classroom Observation Free Writing Sample
I was delighted by the classroom layout and the instructors’ facilitation of the kids’ learning when I watched William Paterson University’s video, “Setting Up to Support Children’s Learning.” The children had plenty of opportunities to learn and explore since the classroom had various open-ended resources and play places. The preschool classroom’s camera observation displays a finely planned learning environment with plenty of open-ended resources and plays places. However, there is an opportunity for advancement in developmentally appropriate practices and constructing a more welcoming classroom environment. As a youngster in this classroom, I was fascinated by the many regions of the classroom and the numerous things accessible to me. This essay comprehensively analyses the classroom environment, curriculum, and developmentally appropriate practices and links to the ideas and theorists discussed in the textbook.
Environment and Materials
Children are given several chances to play, study, and explore their interests in the classroom setting. There are many play spaces, including a science center, a reading nook, a theatrical play area, and a block center. Each area is well-stocked with open-ended tools and resources that may be utilized to pique kids’ imaginations and creativity. For instance, the dramatic play area offers costumes and props that enable kids to play various roles and situations, while the block center has wooden blocks of all shapes and sizes that may be used to create buildings.
Additionally, children’s-sized furniture, well-lit walkways, and safe material storage areas are just a few of the elements included in the environment’s design to assure kids’ safety. The teachers also routinely clean and sanitize the materials to maintain hygienic standards.
Curriculum and Play
Children are encouraged to learn through exploration and discovery as part of the play-based curriculum. Through open-ended inquiries, comments, and skill modeling, the educators actively interact with the kids and support their development. Children are given plenty of options to choose their activities depending on their interests and are encouraged to work individually or in small groups.
One student from the class was seen constructing buildings and bridges out of magnetic tiles while playing with them. The youngster was learning cognitive abilities like spatial awareness, problem-solving, and mathematical ideas like symmetry and balance via this experience. Additionally, they were honing their physical abilities, such as fine motor control and hand-eye coordination.
Developmentally Appropriate Practice
Although the lessons and exercises we watched in the classroom were age-appropriate, there were a few times when the particular requirements of the kids needed to be satisfied. For instance, some kids had trouble communicating their requirements because of language challenges or impairments, and the teachers needed to provide them more help to make learning easier. Additionally, the curriculum and activities needed cultural relevancy and variety, which can cause confident kids to be excluded or marginalized.
Teachers must take a more deliberate approach to diversity and cultural competency to foster an inclusive classroom environment. They may include a variety of viewpoints and experiences in the curriculum, offering resources that represent other cultures and giving kids chances to talk about their own cultures and experiences.
Lev Vygotsky and Jean Piaget are only two of the thinkers who influence educators’ work in the classroom. The play-based method utilized in the classroom is consistent with Piaget’s theory of cognitive development, which contends that children learn best via exploration and discovery. The educators’ strategy for establishing a cooperative learning community is mirrored in Vygotsky’s sociocultural theory, which emphasizes the contribution of social interaction and culture to children’s learning.
Skinner’s behaviorist theory, which emphasizes the significance of reward and encouraging feedback in learning, may still be used more effectively. Instructors may use more excellent positive reinforcement to promote desirable behaviors and provide a happy learning environment for children.
Overall, the preschool classroom video observation offered insightful information on the signs of quality in an early life setting. There is an opportunity for improvement in applying developmentally appropriate practices and building a more inclusive classroom community, even though the learning environment was thoughtfully constructed with open-ended resources and play places. Although Piaget and Vygotsky’s ideas serve as the foundation for educators’ work, Skinner’s behaviorist theory can improve educational opportunities for kids. My desire to work with young children has been piqued by this discovery, emphasizing the need to provide a supportive and inclusive learning environment for all kids.
William Paterson University. (2017). Setting Up to Support Children’s Learning. Retrieved April 23, 2023, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blDMnUVbm8g.