AEM 3270 - Supply Chain Strategy and Supermarket Simulation


Fall. 3 credits. Letter grades only (no audit).

Prerequisite: AEM 2210  or AEM 2225  or equivalent.   Co-meets with AEM 5270 .

D. Hooker.

In Wisconsin and Ohio, farmers are dumping thousands of gallons of fresh milk into ponds and manure pits. In California, farmers are plowing under thousands of acres of lettuce and perfectly ripe strawberries. Months after concerns about shortages in grocery stores shoppers are still scrambling to find the last box of pasta or roll of toilet paper. It is Cyber Monday every day at retailers like, Walmart, Target, and Kroger as they struggle to meet the surge in demand. Could CoVID-19 be the black swan event that finally forces many companies, and entire industries, to rethink and transform their global supply chain model?

The main objective of this course is to introduce students to the important concepts in supply chain management that any student of business (regardless of their current interests) should know to be an effective business manager in the future, and what students with interests other than business can benefit from knowing. Topics include design, planning, execution, control, and monitoring of supply-chain activities with the objective of creating net value, building a competitive infrastructure, leveraging worldwide logistics, synchronizing supply with demand, and measuring performance globally. Effective supply chain management can enable companies to increase market shares, reduce costs, and improve customer service.

Student teams will compete to affect a turnaround of an underperforming retail company. This competition allows students to use and practice skills, tools and knowledge acquired in other classes in a dynamic simulation of a company's operations in a competitive marketplace. Instruction will include review of concepts important to the simulation and the coaching of student teams as they management decisions and interpret the financial results of their (and competitors')  decisions.

Outcome 1: Students will be able to describe supply chain (network) components, processes, objectives, drivers and performance metrics.

Outcome 2: Students will be able to discuss why SCM concepts are relevant to other business functional areas.

Outcome 3: Students will undertake basis analyses of sourcing and purchasing of raw materials or finished goods for re-sale.

Outcome 4: Students will be able to apply basic demand forecasting tools as one component of demand planning (demand management) to support decision-making in supply chains, and to evaluate forecast information provided to you by others.

Outcome 5: Students will be able to develop and interpret basic Sales & Operations Plans (Aggregate Plans) used to determine production schedules in many organizations.

Outcome 6: Students will develop and interpret basic business process analyses and related diagrams and use them for SCM process improvement.

Outcome 7: Students will be able to describe lean manufacturing and sustainability issues and their importance in supply chains.

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