Agile Supply Chain

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Agile Supply Chain
Supply chain deals with how goods move in the market between the producers and the
consumers. The supply chain is vital to the success of any business. Due to increase in
unpredictability in the business market, it is essential for every industry to identify and utilize the
most appropriate supply chain to be successful. The agile supply chain is the latest kind of
supply strategy that has helped companies to reduce costs and wastage, hence increasing profits.
This paper will help us understand the agile supply chain.
Agile supply chain focuses on the production and delivery of goods quickly, maintaining
flexibility, saving costs, maintaining high productivity, and being responsive to the demands of
the consumer and the market (Christopher, 40). These critical components of the agile supply
chain need to be put into daily practice in an organization. The agile chain uses updated and real-
time data to make decisions on what to produce, how much, and to which customer base
(Agarwal et al. 214). For example, agility supply chain enables a company to find orders from
the customers first, know the quantity required and then uses that information to produce what is
necessary at that given time. The strategy helps improve in efficiency and productivity.
The agile supply chain should work in hand with the lean supply chain which focuses on
finding easier ways of doing things. For example, using computerized systems to generate
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orders, and robots to get new orders. Since the production of goods in companies using agile
method happens at the last hour when the products have been ordered and are needed, the
company will apply the lean chain method which uses faster means of production to help it meet
its deadlines (Naylor et al. 108). As a result, in most cases, the industries supplying raw materials
are always found close to the manufacturing companies using the agile method to avoid delays.
All drivers in the chain are expected to act swiftly as soon as the orders have been made to
prevent any delays in delivery of goods.
The agile supply chain helps to satisfy the current needs of the market which involve
constant changes in consumer demand by being responsive to this need. Since the chain is more
centered on information than inventory like the lean chain, it offers an excellent way to compete
and retain the market (Lee 107). Agility in the supply chain avoids shortages in supply as well as
excess stock inventory by producing only what is required at a given time. Also, agility allows
partners in the supply chain to work together to provide the needed products on a daily basis. Lee
(112) mentions that tasks are divided among individuals in the supply chain according to their
capabilities. Every participant in the chain equally owns the chain and their performance matter.
Furthermore, agility gives room for customization of products to meet changing consumer
Since the agile supply chain produces goods only after confirmation of demand, any
delays from any department in the chain can be detrimental to the business. Christopher (43)
mentions that the strategy also leads to a lot of pressure among individuals involved in the
production and delivery process because they work to meet deadlines and the work is intensive.
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Additionally, when there are many orders which come at the same time, there is a likelihood of
delays in deliveries because of the high workload.
The agile supply chain has helped shape the supply entity due to its applicability to the
present market needs. It is essential to understand that this strategy should incorporate the lean
concept to achieve a more efficient and demand driven supply chain.
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Works Cited
Agarwal, Ashish, et al. "Modeling The Metrics of Lean, Agile and Leagile Supply Chain: An
Anp-Based Approach." European Journal of Operational Research173.1 (2006): 211-
Christopher, Martin. "The Agile Supply Chain: Competing In Volatile Markets." Industrial
Marketing Management 29.1 (2000): 37-44.
Lee, Hau L. "Aligning Supply Chain Strategies with Product Uncertainties." California
Management Review 44.3 (2002): 105-119.
Naylor, J. et al. "Leagility: Integrating the Lean And Agile Manufacturing Paradigms In The
Total Supply Chain." International Journal Of Production Economics 62.1-2 (1999):

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