Analyze the Evolution of Supply Chain Management in Apple Corporation
Many supply chain professionals consider Apple’s supply chain to be the best in the world. But is that simply because Apple is among the most recognised brands in the world? For an objective analysis, a deeper look into the management and supply chain must be investigated thoroughly. However, in order to study Apple’s supply chain management, parameters on what a supply chain is must be set. Traditionally “Supply chain management (SCM) is the management of a network of interconnected businesses involved in the provision of product and service packages required by the end customers in a supply chain.” Supply chain management spans all movement and storage of raw materials, work-in-process …show more content…
But other parts of the supply chain become more difficult for a company that differentiates itself based on product excellence. Apple works to lock up the supply of key components, particularly custom components, with exclusivity agreements. This serves to protect the uniqueness of its products. In some cases, Apple invests in capital equipment to make these special components (the company lends the production equipment to its manufacturing partner). At times this production machinery becomes Apple exclusive either because of exclusivity agreements or because Apple is so large that a backlog for the equipment becomes horrifically long. This all results in the fact that product perfection takes place of prime instead of supply chain management. Lately, Apple’s policy seems to be alone the lines that not caring how the internal product handling and communication is done so long as externally, their product sells the instant it hits the market.
Managing new product launches is also more important for a “fashion” manufacturer. The process from design to production launch typically takes 10 months. This includes sourcing, testing, government approvals (like FCC approval for an iPhone), and factory dry runs. For