Course offerings reflect the 2023-2024. One unit of credit equals four semester hours.

An overview of computer-based optimization tools for supply chain planning and decision making. Topics include the use of spreadsheets and supply chain software suites for various tasks within the supply chain such as resource requirement planning, transportation service and cost analysis, supply chain network design, supply planning, demand planning and inventory planning.

The fundamentals and insights into how supply chain management affects business strategies. A case study approach emphasizes supply chain management practices, business strategy and financial flows and strategy in an expanding global economy. Topics include an overview of quality, inventory management, logistics strategies, reverse logistics, procurement, e-commerce and customer service.

An overview of the decision-making practices, theories and concepts for effectively outsourcing all or part of a firm’s supply chain functions. Topics include a discussion of the various outsourcing options, the development of a third-party selection process and creating viable, effective commercial relationships.

An overview of the typical product, price and demand forecasting techniques used in effective and efficient distribution channel management decision making. Course subjects include the modeling process, the value and limitations of the various forecasting methods and evaluation of these techniques for solving practical supply chain problems.

.25 credit

A survey and examination of the issues surrounding the planning, implementation and control of inbound procurement processes. Topics include strategies to support supplier programs, techniques/opportunities to improve inbound process flow, terms of sales, defining key inbound processes and control metrics.

An overview of the development and application of performance measures and benchmarking in the supply chain. Specifically, the course will examine the idea of how to establish benchmarking techniques of specific supply chain activities such as warehousing, transportation and inventory control. Topics include the benefits and costs associated with benchmarking, the benchmarking process, methods of establishing benchmark statistics, selecting benchmark candidates and the recalibration of the process.

An overview of the development/application of supplier certification concepts on the procurement process. Topics include locating supply sources; developing sound supplier relationships; monitoring and evaluating a supplier’s performance; and supplier selection criteria such as quality, reliability, capability, financial stability and geographical considerations.

A survey of issues involved in managing supply and demand in the supply chain within a manufacturing context. The course overviews issues such as manufacture versus outsource decisions, product design, process selection, facility decisions, and planning production and distribution. Topics include the design of supply chain networks, the aggregate planning methodology and the management of demand through price and promotion manipulation.

An examination of the various research techniques and methodologies used in the analysis, design and implementation of an effective distribution network. An emphasis of this course, which uses the case study approach, is how to implement various research strategies to solve supply chain problems. Topics include methodologies for systems design, customer service logistics audits and analysis of public policy related to supply chain issues.

A survey of the impact of the emerging global marketplace on today’s business environment. In particular, this case study course will integrate the concepts, theories and evolving practices of global supply chains with today’s marketplace. Topics include international terms of sale, impact of e-commerce on global strategies, international transportation carriers, documentation issues, global third-party providers and ethical considerations.

An examination of the strategic nature and importance of an effective warehouse network in the supply chain. Topics include the changing role of the warehousing function; value-added services; warehouse space needs forecasting; basic warehouse layout and design factors; material handling design; the decision to buy or lease warehouse space; and location analysis.

A study of current practice as it relates to quality improvement processes in the management of a firm’s distribution network. Topics include the value and costs associated with quality, the dimensions of quality, the application of practical statistical process control (SPC) methods to supply chain processes, quality certification, establishment of quality improvement programs and quality improvement reporting.

A survey on the impact of transportation strategies on supply chain decision making. The course emphasizes the planning, implementation and control process of the finished goods movement. Topics include selection, assessment and measurement of carriers, pricing strategies for carrier and modal selection, transportation contract development, role of private fleets and outsourcing transportation services.

An overview of the conceptual and practical applications of the physical flow of goods and related distribution information in the supply chain. Topics include the interface of marketing strategies and logistics, the development of new/alternative distribution channels, pricing policies and channel conflicts.

The course will examine the contribution and influence that packaging decision-making factors have on the product’s value and distribution costs. Topics include such practical application issues such as how the size, shape and types of packaging influence supply chain decisions regarding material handling equipment and warehouse design and the legal and environmental considerations of packaging.

The course examines the role of inventory and various strategies in managing inventory in the supply chain. Topics include traditional versus zero-based inventory approaches, controlling cycle inventory, the role and cost of safety stock in managing uncertainty, optimizing product availability, shared risk issues, inventory velocity, stock-outs implications, sourcing strategies and inventory decision-making techniques and tools.

An investigation of the emerging role of electronic commerce (e-commerce) and its impact on supply chain management decision making. Topics include a brief history of e-commerce, e-commerce strategies including business to business and business to consumers, development of effective supply chain networks for e-commerce, the future of e-commerce and the implication of the distribution channel.

An overview of the development/impact of customer service/ relationship strategies on cost/service decisions in the distribution channel. Topics include the development of customer satisfaction programs, methods of establishing customer service metrics, customer satisfaction as a corporate philosophy, and impediments to the implementation of effective customer satisfaction strategies.

This capstone seminar course consolidates and integrates the many different functions, concepts and decision-making practices within the supply chain. A case study approach helps students understand the development, value adding and important linkages in a distribution channel. Topics include strategic alliances, business strategy implications, customer service and innovation.

An overview and analysis of the various information management technology resources used in a firm’s supply chain. The course will examine the various source data capture hardware, communication applications, database products, and planning tools used in today’s decision making within distribution systems. Topics include an overview of warehouse management systems, Enterprise Resource Planning, routing/dispatch software, shipment tracing and satellite tracking.

An overview of practices, theories and concepts with the return flow of goods, services and information. Topics include handling returns in an e-commerce environment, return goods control methods and freight claims prevention.

A survey of critical human resources issues surrounding the hiring and training of qualified personnel in a global marketplace. Topics include managing in a diverse work environment, ADA, establishment of safe and effective working conditions, legal issues in human resource management and ethical/social issues of outsourcing.

A final team project presentation and paper to demonstrate the integration of all aspects of the program. Subjects will be developed and approved in cooperation with the cohort’s faculty team.

Elmhurst University reserves the right to modify courses, schedules and program format without advance notice to students.

Roby Thomas, Ph.D.

Professor, Supply Chain; Program Director, M.S. in Supply Chain Management; Director, Supply Chain Think Tank
Department of Business and Economics

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