Top-Down Versus Bottom-Up Approaches To Supply Chain Planning

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1.50 hours
Online Self Study


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About the Course

This course compares and contrasts transactional and analytical information technology systems and discusses their relevance to improved supply chain management.

Course Description

This course will begin by discussing how improvements in supply chain management have developed in the past 10 years due in large part to advances in information technology. Astonishing gains in the computing speed of personal computers, communications, and the power and flexibility of data management software have promoted a range of applications. Widespread implementations of enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems have offered the promise of homogeneous, transactional databases that can foster improved supply chain management.

The course will point out that in many companies the scope and flexibility of installed ERP systems have been less than desired or expected, and their contribution to supply chain management has yet to be fully achieved. Mini cases are presented to illustrate the range of applications.

The course will also emphasize that competitive advantage is gained not simply through faster and cheaper communication of data. And, as many managers have come to realize, ready access to transactional data does not automatically lead to better decision making.

A guiding principle is that to effectively apply information technology in managing its supply chain, a company must distinguish between the form and function of transactional and analytical information technology.

Learning Objectives

The objectives of this course are:

  • The complementary purposes of transactional and analytical information technology.
  • The synergy between descriptive and normative models for supply chain planning.
  • Basic principles for constructing modeling systems to support supply chain decision making.
  • The fundamental elements of the supply chain decision database and how it is derived from ERP databases.
  • The hierarchy of supply chain decision problems encompassing strategic, tactical, and operational planning.
  • How fact-based supply chain management invokes business process expansion.