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MODULE NAME:	BM019
SESSION 2018 - 2019
ASSESSMENT 2: DIET 1
Queen Margaret University

Assessment: Individual Report

Summary

In this assignment, students are asked to act as a “consultant” to a small, but quickly growing organisation that operates within the Scottish Whisky Industry.

The organisation has hired you to deliver a management report, based on your understanding and experience of their operational arrangements that allows them to determine the future direction of their business and how they are positioned for this future.

You are expected to assess current OSCM (Operational Supply Chain Management) operations and suggest ways of developing their Operations Management practices and maximising their full business potential over the next 5 years.

Context.

You are specifically asked to address the (relatively) poor Operation performance that has been experienced with the organisations internal and external business partners.

Communication, understanding and trust in Operations have fallen to unacceptable levels and although there is growth in both Company profits and sales, the reliability of information, deliveries, the ability to be flexible to changing Customer demands and the quality of goods is variable (to say the least) emerging from their current Operations.

The board suspect that the profit growth is simply hiding some significant underlying operational issues and that performance could be much “Simpler, Faster & Better” if the quality of business relationships (Internal & External) were addressed.

They have asked that you develop a report highlighting industry “Best Practice” (to be informed and demonstrated by practice and theory) for building and maintaining high quality, mutually beneficial relationships with suppliers and business partners. Explaining:-

  • What you understand the core issues are
  • What is current “best practice” in these areas
  • What would you do to improve this situation
  • What order of priority would you execute this “Programme of improvement”.
  • The likely impact this “Programme of Improvement” will have on the Internal and External stakeholders of Operations.

Advice about investment in Inventory , Bottling/assembly, co-partner relationships and alternative suggestions for meeting their growing Sales, bespoke Customer demands and developing a USP for the business.

Data analysis can be used to support this section, but the HDL Board has indicated that your report should focus on exploring and delivering a “Best Practice” programme of improvement for their business.

The assignment and report has 4 sections:

#1 Introduction

An Executive Summary of the business report.

Starting with the Background & Context, this section should be engaging, informative and direct providing the reader with a synopsis of the overall report, insights into the key issues, what “Best Practice” in Operations looks like and a prioritised path to implement these.

Concluding with the core conclusions and recommendations that the board should act upon and why.

#2 The Theory

From research on both OSCM explore and understand the insight that delivers current best practice within this core discipline.

From a study of the (provided) company data & information explore what are the current functional practices and the impact/influence this has on the current level and quality of performance.

Explore and understand how the current OSCM performance and output levels impact has on Customers, potential Customers and other major stakeholders for the company.

#3 Best Practice in OSCM.

Identify and understand the functional areas of most concern within the company’s OSCM arena. Carry out a ‘root cause analysis’ of these identified issues and suggest a method to rectify those in order of priority/most positive impact.

Research and explore the current best practice in those identified areas and understand how, why, when and where these ‘fresh ideas’ should and could be implemented with the business.

Understand the impact these changes will have on OSCM function (and staff)

Understand the impact and implications this will have on all the major stakeholders (both internal & external)

#4 Moving forward.

What are the limited number of recommendations and conclusions that have emerged from this study.

From this what would your position be and why

What would you recommend from here to recover and refresh the OSCM within the company.

Outcomes:

On Completion of this assessment student will be able to:

  • Critically understand the complexity and contribution of OSCM in both service and manufacturing industries
  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of the benefits and risks of increasingly expansive and integrated, international supply chains; and the drivers and characteristics of supply chain excellence.
  • Develop a critical awareness of the importance of effective design, planning, control and improvement of operational and supply chain processes
  • Demonstrate a conceptual understanding of the strategic importance of managing internal and external relationships for enhancing operational and supply chain performance.

Outline Answer:

The assessment is a formal business management report at Masters Level centred on the OSCM of a fictitious company operating in the International Spirits (Whisky) Industry.

Within the 3,000 words, (complimented by appropriate support appendices) this report will deliver a good level of understanding on the OSCM issues within the company and the student will provide a suggested pathway to issue resolution and the managerial impact/implication of the suggested changes.

#1 Introduction

An Executive Summary of the business report.

Relevant points to secure a robust ‘Background & Context’

Engaging, informative, concise and direct providing the reader with a solid understand of the current (perceived) issues and the route map to resolution.

#2 The Theory

From detailed and deep research (and the company info/data provided) on OSCM explore the functions of the company that are not current operating at Best Practice standard.

Suggested areas to accommodate are:-

Strategic Planning for OSCM, Sales fulfilment, Inventory Policy, Staff recruitment & Development, Standardisation/Rationalisation/NPD, Risk Analysis, Procurement, Supply Partners, Supply Lead time, Manufacturing and Supply Resilience.

From this study of the explore the impact/influence this has on the current level of and quality of performance specifically the impact this has on Customers, potential Customers and other major stakeholders for the company.

#3 Best Practice in OSCM.

From related articles on OSCM, interrogate and understand what is the standard of current best practice for the functional areas identified as the ones to improve.

Carry out a ‘root-cause analysis’ of these identified issues and suggest a ‘modus operandi’ to recover the OSCM performance to the levels needed to support the future level of business.

Gain relevant insights from other Fmcg industries/companies demonstration of current best practice in the OSCM arena and explain how this can be adapted to be considered by the company.

Create a priority list of the most positive impactful areas to get to work on. Taking into account the need to keep the business running, staff motivated and Customers engaged.

The opportunity to give insights into any future re-design of the supply infra-structure or core elements of the OSCM footprint should also be made.

#4 Moving forward.

A concise set of conclusions and recommendations supported by core pillars

A demonstration of ‘what success would look like’ and an indication on the likely time lines involved.

The demonstration of a clear and logical set of strategy, tactics and operational elements in the recommendations.

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