Purpose of single sourcing and how it can help firms meet their quality objectives

Single sourcing involves a firm using one supplier to supply a particular item. Single sourcing is very important in helping firms meet their quality objectives. It is very important in that it improves the relationship between the company and the supplier (Yang, 1995). 

Single sourcing can help a firm to identify mediocre suppliers and remove them and remain with a supplier who proves more competitive in quality value with added contents with opportunities to grow and prosper. This will help the firm to only work with a competitive supplier (Yang, 1995).

Single sourcing also encourages improvement in quality in that it encourages long time commitment between the supplier and the firm. The two become committed to each other which encourages a proper supply and production thus helping in meeting some quality objectives (Yang, 1995).

It can also help provide more innovative parts and components of a firm as it helps a supplier to learn about the firm’s intent and long term commitment through the long period contracts and thus can encourage the supplier to invest in production. Through the information provided by the firm they can learn how their product fit in the final products of the firm, find possible problems associated with their product and come up with possible solutions to the problems (Yang, 1995).

Briefing on an issue that parallels a case study in the Foster text explaining how the case study coverage might offer a format and strategy to solve the issue.

The largest challenge that our company is currently facing is being able to differentiate our products from those produced by our competitors. Though we produce the best and original products, our competitors produce similar products making it difficult for our customers to differentiate between our products and those of our competitors. This is affecting our sales in that sometimes the customers buy other products believing they are from our company and if the products fail to fully satisfy their needs the consumers ends up diverting from our products. 

From the case study, we can see a similar case happening in case 10-2 Lanier. The company sells office equipment and even though it produces high quality products, the products as similar to those produced by other office equipment sellers. From what Lanier business used in solving its challenge we can get a format and strategy to solve a similar issue in our organization.

To find a way to be differentiated from our competitors we can decide to shift from a sales-driven company to a company focused on customer satisfaction. This is where we operate with the aim of satisfying consumer needs unlike other companies who work with the aim of making profits by maximizing sales. For the company to achieve this it will have to build a corporate culture that will support our products with quality customer service.

The company can use the strategies that were used by Lanier to develop quality services that will help in complementing our products. The following four quality related programs can be used: customer version, performance promise, 100 percent sold and team management process. Customer version will be used to encourage all the employees in the company to see the company’s business through the consumer’s eye. This will help the employees to respond appropriately to the consumer needs.

The performance program can be created to offer the best pledge to the industry by guaranteeing that the product will satisfy customer needs fully and offer replacement free of charge. The company can also provide a 24hour toll free helpline and a 10year guarantee on the availability of the company’s products and services. On the 100 percent sold program, the company is supposed to challenge its employees to ensure that our customers buy all that we produce and they require from our company. In the team management process, the program puts emphasis on the company adopting a never ending process of quality improvement, reliability and performance of our products. If the company succeeds in doing all the above it will be easier for it to be differentiated from other companies producing similar products (Foster, & Ganguly, 2007). 

Outline for term project


1.0 Introduction 2

Purchasing and supply management is very important for any business or firm to succeed in its operations. This is because it leads the organization on how to deal with its customers and suppliers to create a better relationship.

1.1 Abstract 2

1.2 Executive Summary 2

1.3 Literature Review 2

1.4 Purchasing and Supply management in the three organizations 2

1.5 Amazon 3

  • Uses e-commerce which connects suppliers and buyers all over the world.
  • Offers free shipping on all its orders (Kennedy & Dowling, 2013).

1.6 Kaiser Permanente 4

  • Implemented Oracle’s PeopleSoft Application as their EPR system.
  • Use of product scanning which helps to have a more accurate inventory (Banker, 2014)

1.7 Nordstrom 4

1.8 Supply Chain Management Strategies 5

  • Use of information and communication technology
  • Process orientation
  • Advanced planning (Stadtler, 2005).

1.9 Challenges faced in Purchasing and supplies management 5

  • Uncertainty in supplies and production.
  • Limited functionality of traditional materials to purchasing and material requirements planning (Stadtler, 2005).

1.9.1 Solutions to common challenges in Purchasing and Supplies Management 5

  • Creating rolling schedules to cater for uncertainty.
  • Incorporating incapacitated as well as capacitated purchasing models including various forms of discount options (Stadtler, 2005).

1.9.2 Value of Continuous improvement in the purchasing and supply industry 6

  • Leads to development of a range of products and services.
  • Encourages capacity utilization.
  • Leads to effectiveness of scheduling techniques (Bhagwat & Sharma, 2007).

1.9.3 Tools used to align supply chain objectives with strategic business goals 6

  • Strategic measurement analysis and reporting technique system.
  • Strategic performance measurement system.
  • Integrated dynamic performance measurement system (Bhagwat, & Sharma, 2007).

1.9.4 Conclusion 7

Every business is required to take good care of its purchase and supply management. This is because they are very important tools in the running of a business.

References 8

Banker, S. (2014). Kaiser Permanente and their Journey to Transform their Supply Chain. Forbes. Retrieved from

Bhagwat, R., & Sharma, M. K. (2007). Performance measurement of supply chain management: A balanced scorecard approach. Computers & Industrial Engineering53(1), 43-62.

Hiiemaa, k. (2015). Case Study: How You Can Copy Nordstrom’s Secrets to Massive Retail Success. ERPLY. Retrieved from

Kennedy, S. & Dowling, P. (2013). How can turn the page on supply-chain sustainabilityGreenBiz. Retrieved 16 March 2017, from

Stadtler, H. (2005). Supply chain management and advanced planning––basics, overview and challenges. European journal of operational research163(3), 575-588.


Foster, S. T., & Ganguly, K. K. (2007). Managing quality: Integrating the supply chain (pp. 256-266). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Yang, X. (1995). Globalization of the Automobile Industry: The United States, Japan, and the People’s Republic of China (1st ed.). Greenwood Publishing Group,.

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