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Brexit viewed purely in economic term

The EU has certainly brought benefits to the UK. However, these benefits have come at a cost and this cost has been distributed unevenly across the UK. By cost, I don’t mean the annual contribution that we make but more the hidden costs associated with membership. In joining we have had to accept the demise of industries once at the core of UK life (fishing is an example) as well as turn our backs on countries outside the UK with which we have had historical trading ties (typically through the Commonwealth).

Image: istock

In addition, the introduction of the free labour movement has seen not only the useful movement of skilled labour into areas where it is needed but also the flooding of the semi-skilled and unskilled markets with cheap labour. Bringing costs down is not a bad thing, but there are inevitably social consequences when it is achieved by reducing labour costs rather than improved processes.

In communities dependent on supplying labour into these latter markets, jobs have either become scarcer (supply of labour outstripping demand) or it has resulted in a depression in the wages paid to people as employers have a bigger potential workforce from which to draw (and the appearance of zero-hour contracts). In addition, these communities have found themselves inundated with migrant labour which has not only put pressure on existing infrastructure (hospitals, schools, etc) but has also alienated some people who feel like strangers in their own communities.

Migration in these areas has been more akin to an invasion rather than a steady integration. So, in short, the hidden costs of the EU have been distributed unevenly throughout the country. Add to this the pressure of austerity measures introduced following a recession caused entirely by the greed of unscrupulous financiers and you have the potential for large swathes of the population feeling ignored and disenfranchised.

Now throw into this mix the idea that the population of the UK will be given a vote on whether to stay in or leave the EU. What do you think is likely to happen? Well, just what did happen. Those areas of the country feeling the greatest pain have voted to leave. Those areas of the country suitably blanketed from the hidden costs have voted to stay.

To steal from Stevie Smith, Remainers are waving the leavers are drowning. So what does this all mean? It means that we all have to re-assess the real benefits/costs of belonging to the EU. We certainly need to address the issue of free movement and we certainly need to revisit the revival of industries that traditionally lie at the heart of the UK.

If this means leaving the EU, then the short economic term pain will be worth it if the long term social benefit is to bring the disparity parts of the UK closer together again.

BTW, did you notice that I made no mention of the MPs or anyone involved in the political process?

Why? Because vested interest and party politics are driving their agendas. What I am citing here is what the people of this country need – not the politicians.

Sources – Nemo’s comment

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My Motivation for Week 3 2019

The rise in gadgets distracting us from the immediacy of being present with someone cannot be denied. With the constant barrage of laptops, iPads, smartphones, and now “smartwatches,” being aware and enjoying someone’s physical company often times falls on the back burner.

In this age of hyper-connectivity, Though one would expect the power and art of conversations not to be lost. But the argument would be ‘are conversations just a simple exchange of information between people’ or ‘it is so much more’.

As we all need someone to talk to. It’s easy to become isolated. A conversation is based on physical presence, which is rooted in feeling. All our senses are involved. By talking to someone in person, we gain access to specific senses: appreciation, compassion, and love. These are the feelings that connect human beings to reality, which stimulates our intuition and awareness. However, if we become conditioned to the computer, then we become one-dimensional. We are less deep as individuals and more shallow, predictable, anxiety-ridden, and irritable.

My focus, however, I know would be having good conversations whether it be with a gadget or it be by face to face.

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4 Reasons for visibility within a supply chain system

Visibility encompasses not only sensing data but also how to analyse it and take appropriate action across a supply chain system. A supply chain system allows collaboration and communication between internal and external trading partners and should give visibility to activities up and down the supply chain. Significant benefits are gained from this end-to-end visibility, such as higher order fulfillment rates, improved customer service levels, increased operational efficiency, higher profitability, and revenue growth.

Order Fulfillment Rates

Order fulfillment rate is the percentage of customer or consumption orders satisfied from stock at hand. It is a measure of an inventory’s ability to meet demand. Also called demand satisfaction rate. The best solution to gaining visibility may be to invest in cloud technology capable of managing big data. This facilitates communication and the ability to make quick, informed decisions. Bearing in mind that order management and fulfillment has long been considered one of the core competencies of the supply chain—and business—success.

Customers Service Levels

Meeting the needs and demands of customers is by far the biggest challenges facing today’s supply chain professionals. Not only do customers expect to receive their products in a timely manner, they also want choices of when it comes to when (and how) those products are delivered. Visibility allows for business to respond as quickly as possible, know customers, fix mistakes, go the extra mile, think long term – A customer is for life. Customer Service Level has an impact on both existing customers and potential customers. A recent survey found that 68% of consumers would react by telling family and friends about a bad experience by posting it on a social network. And as each Facebook profile has an average of 229 friends, the reach of this experience can quickly reach thousands.

Operational Efficiency

One of the ways companies measure efficiency is with order fulfillment processes by looking at the Perfect Order Metric. A perfect order is one that is on time, complete, and undamaged, along with the correct paperwork to accompany it. This metric is similar to the fill rate. To determine the fill rate, divide the amount of work or product a supplier has provided by the total amount of work or product necessary. Imagine that a customer requests 60 cases of product from a business and the business has shipped 20 cases. The fill rate is 20 divided by 60, or 33.3 percent. Visibility of operational efficiency allows for continuous process improvement.

Profitability and Revenue Growth

As organizations look to increase revenues by expanding their product portfolios, they’re also introducing complexity and risk into their supply chains.  A 2017 global survey by supply chain consulting firm Geodis found that visibility has become a bigger concern among companies in recent years. In the report, 70% of respondents described their supply chain as “very” or “extremely” complex. Only 6% of those who participated in the study were confident that they have full visibility of their supply chain.  This has been attributed by the peerless research group study to the lack of necessary systems to handle the visibility (transparency).

Visibility enables the business to increase profitability by reducing cost and risk within the supply chain system. Achieving an increase in the business surplus which creates value within the supply chain simultaneously impacting revenue growth. As a supply chain management professional you are expected to leverage these benefits to facilitate business sustainability and competitiveness.





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Basic Understanding of Supply and Demand

Market prices depend on levels of supply and demand. These levels rise and fall according to a number of factors, and can have a big impact on the success of a business.

market is any place where buyers and sellers meet to trade products. The market price is the amount customers are charged for items and depends on demand and supply.

Demand is the number of product customers is prepared to buy at different prices. Supply is the number of product business is prepared to sell at different prices.

people queueing along a street

Some products are in such high demand that customers are prepared to queue for them

There are many different types of market. The goods market is where everyday products such as DVDs are traded. The commodities market is where raw materials such as wheat are traded.

Market prices change when supply and demand patterns change.

  • An increase in demand following a successful advertising campaign usually causes an increase in price.
  • An increase in supply when a new business opens usually causes a fall in price.

Changing market prices affect a firm’s costs. When the price of commodities such as oil and electricity increases, a business finds its own costs of production rise. Higher costs are either:

  • Passed on to the consumer in the form of higher prices.
  • Absorbed by the firm. This leaves prices unchanged but means lower profit margins for the company.


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5 tasks a supply chain professional is expected to be able to perform.

  1. A supply chain professional related tasks vary from speaking to suppliers, data entry, data analysis etc.
    These tasks may be focused on the any or combined business functions mentioned  below:
    • Buying and Expediting
    • Market Intelligence
    Spend Analysis
    • Rate Competitiveness Studies
    • Inventory Planning
    These tasks do not only have to be performed but also measured and reviewed periodically based on expected variance and expected outcomes.
  2. Work several projects simultaneously.
  3. Work in a team-based environment.
  4. Meet task deadlines (warning these might be tight!)
  5. Perform assignments driven by business need (not necessarily what you want to learn about).

This is due to the needs to cope with a whole range of supply chain challenges is putting greater pressure than ever on the supply chain processes and systems. Such need range from many aspects of inventory planning that are directly influenced by decisions made in the buying and expediting process. Many of the variables that are tied to the reliability of the logistics network are directly related to the locations of the suppliers and to their delivery performance.

In addition, contractual agreements that specify high minimum order quantities or long lead times—or both—can prevent a from making the necessary adjustments to raw material inputs when demand does not merit high volumes.

However, a supply chain professional should be able to reduce the complexity of performing these tasks by adopting differentiating practices such as collaborative planning alongside customers and suppliers relationship management.