LOG 490 Capstone Course in Logistics – All Case Assignments With Sample Answers

LOG 490 Module 1  Case AssignmentLogistics Within The Business Organization

Read the two articles below:

  • Dutton, Gail (2009 Sept.) Selling the supply chain upwards, World Trade, Troy: Vol. 22, Iss. 9, pg. 34, 3 pgs.
  • Rudski, Robert, (2008) Supply Management Transformation: A Leader’s Guide, Supply Chain Management Review, New York, Vol. 12, Iss 2; pg. 12, 1 pgs.

In an essay of 3–4 pages, answer the following questions:

  1. Why have supply chain management issues often been ignored by senior management?
  2. Describe the strategy you would employ to sell senior management on the benefits of focusing more attention on supply chain management. (Be sure in addressing the strategy question that you incorporate examples from Abercrombie & Fitch’s experience described in Dutton’s article and the suggestions noted in Rudski’s article.)
  3. Discuss the benefits that might be gained from working closely with 3PLs, 4PLs, and vendors in promoting supply chain management initiatives to senior management.


LOG 490 Module 2 Case Assignment – Logistics Providers: Traditional And Virtual

Read all of the articles on the Background page.

After reading the articles, answer the following questions in a 3- to 4-page paper:

  1. Compare and differentiate the functions normally associated with 4PLs to those of 3PLs.
  2. What are the factors responsible for more and more companies relying on the services of 4PLs?
  3. Explain why it is important to establish metrics that can help determine the “value” a 4PL can contribute to the supply chain when entering into these agreements.
  4. Would you consider Unyson’s logistics solutions defined for Big Lots consistent with the role of a 4PL in adding value to a supply chain? (Explain and illustrate.)


LOG 490 Module 3 Case Assignment – Benchmarking Logistics Performance

Read the following articles:

  • Chan, Felix T. S., Chan, H. K., Lau, Henry C. W., & Ip, Ralph W. L. (2006), An AHP approach in benchmarking logistics performance of the postal industry, Benchmarking, Bradford 2006, Vol. 13, Iss. 6, pg 636.
  • Anonymous, (2008 Dec) Time to take stock of the supply chain, Logistics Manager, London: p. 34.

Many practices can continue almost as a habit without anyone actually sitting down and thrashing out the rationale for each process or operation. DHL understands that its success and that of its clients are intrinsically linked to efficiency and effectiveness of operational processes. Sharing the value delivered through these improvements between the partners is a key enabler in driving out cost. “Within the retail and consumer group at DHL Exel Supply Chain, we’ve already held almost 100 Process Improvement/DMAIC workshops this year, which have contributed to continuous improvements and identified effectiveness equating to pound 4m.”

Another tactic for cutting supply chain costs is to look at the whole value chain—physical flows, information, financial flows, systems, business structure/silos, culture, etc. “We offer our customers these as ‘Value Chain Assessments’ (VCA), where a customer may have a broad question—where is the risk in my supply chain? Where are my major costs and how can I impact them? Answering these questions is often easier said than done as many in-company logistics or supply chain managers lack visibility beyond their own supply chain operations. We can fill in the gaps in the picture—especially with today’s highly complex and extended retail supply chains. With a wide range of clients, 3PLs can provide benchmarking and information on best practice drawn from a range of industries, as well as practical deliverable solutions. Our VCA methodology challenges our customers to embrace change—but it also challenges our own teams to do likewise. Success is not in the delivery of VCA report—it’s in being a catalyst to deliver benefits to our customers.”

In an essay of 3–4 pages, answer the following questions:

  1. Explain why a two-stage benchmarking methodology that utilizes performance evaluation metrics followed by continuous improvement metrics could be a useful tool for achieving a competitive advantage.
  2. Discuss why the inclusion of the second phase, related to continuous improvement, represents a step forward from traditional benchmarking approaches.
  3. Evaluate the general adequacy of the major performance criteria used in the AHP article for assessing logistics applied to other types of organizations. Feel free to suggest additions or modifications in the performance criteria if you believe there are inadequacies in the current criteria.
  4. Describe the role a 3PL could play in implementing an effective benchmarking approach.


LOG 490 Module 4  Case Assignment –  The Impact Of 9/11 On Global Logistics

Read the following articles:

  • Zalud, Bill, (2010 May) Every Link in the Chain, Security, Troy: Vol. 47, Iss.5; pg. 28, 3 pgs.
  • Closs, David, Cheri Speier, Judith Whipple, M. Douglas Voss (2008 Sep) A Framework for Protecting your Supply Chain, Logistics Management (2002) Highland Ranch: Vol.47, Iss. 9; pg. 45, 1 pg.

After reading these and the other articles in the assigned reading, in an essay of 3-4 pages, answer the following questions:

  1. Is a security-oriented culture applied to the supply chain just good business? Explain.
  2. What are the benefits of viewing security issues beyond the individual firm?
  3. Why is RFID technology viewed by many to be an important tool in securing a supply chain?
  4. Which of the 10 security competencies discussed in the Closs, Speier, Whipple, and Voss article are likely to be the most challenging to implement? Why?

LOG 490 Module 5 Case AssignmentLogistics Planning And System Design

Read the article below and answer the following questions in a 3- to 4-page paper:

  1. Is Subway’s effort aimed at “greening” the supply chain compatible with “bottom line” objectives? (Explain.)
  2. Describe the major logistics strategies and tactics associated with Subway’s approach for aligning logistics operations with environmental initiatives.
  3. Assess the transferability of Subway’s logistics plan applied to other businesses within and outside the food sector.

Fitzgerald, Tina, Tim Brown, Elizabeth Stewart (2009 Apr) Subway’s Journey to Green, Logistics Management (2002), Highland Ranch, Vol. 48, Iss. 4, pg. 22.


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