Purchasing and Sypply Chain Management: Apple Case Study

 Purchasing and Sypply Chain Management: Apple Case Study


Strategic and supply chain management cynosure on the implementation and development related to extensive goals of an organisation with the logistics. This particular report will focus on Apple and the significance of the supply chain management regarding this organisation. The impact and principles of the strategic and supply chain management’s aspects will also be canvased in this case scenario. The evolution of purchasing activities and supply management tools used by the organisation will be also figured out in the paper. The significance of the strategies will also be seen with great depth. As an organisation, Apple is leading in a global manner and all the strategic activities will be discussed. The soft and hard networks are used with great depth in the organisation, and all these factors, which are boosting the supply chain management, will be evaluated in the above discussion. The organisation has also flourished a relationship with the competitive advantage for the supply chain management which will be discussed as well.


Question 1- Outsourcing and Global Sourcing


Outsourcing insulation management can be considered as the type of activity, which is taken care of by certain integration issues. These types of integration issues are faced by the organisation and the external aspects supervise the supply chain and outsourcing can be considered as the backbone of supply chain management (Saberi et al., 2019). Outsourcing is also considered to be the business practice of hiring or a party that is not working inside the company. The parties are generally hired from outside the company to perform different types of services alongside the practices of the organisation [Refer to Figure 1]. In this case scenario for Apple outsourcing is decisive for the development of supply chain management as the service actions and the creation of goods are traditionally performed by outsourcing.

Outsourcing is the practice which is undertaken by different types of company and in this case scenario Apple for cutting different types of costs. This measure helps the organisation to put together certain strategies for reduction of the cost (Kshetri, 2018). Outsourcing is also used by Apple for human resource management, supply change management as well as customer service. Apple as an organisation focuses on using outsourcing as one of the most important aspects of strategic planning. This organisation also uses outsources as a tactical tool for supply chain management

Figure 1: Outsourcing

(Source: Koberg and Longoni, 2019)

Global sourcing

Global sourcing in Apple can be considered as the type of procurement strategy used by this particular business for their sourcing of different goods and services. Apple is an organisation that focuses on its goods and services and the products it offers to the world and in this factor, global market sourcing or global sourcing comes into importance (Koberg and Longoni, 2019). The global sourcing of this organisation helps this company to obtain different types of highest levels of efficiency. One of the most important rules of global sourcing for Apple as an organisation is lowering different production costs which take place during making software and products of the company.

While making their products and services there are certain types of quantity and quality standards the organisations have to maintain and global sourcing helps to lower those types of production costs required for the services and product. Over the last few decades, the key consideration of Global sourcing is to confirm the quality and value pricing of several products and services (Tseng et al., 2019). Apple is an organisation that finds it extremely sustainable for the company as well As for the people to work together with global sourcing in its supply chain management. This organisation also focuses on using global sourcing as a tool for strategic planning in the supply chain management aspect.

Outsourcing as a Tool for Apple

Apple is a company that is regulating on a worldwide scale. This is why Apple uses outsourcing as a tactical tool for strategic management as well as for the betterment and development of supply chain management. Speaking of the practices and the tool used by Apple outsourcing is one of the greatest tactical tools used by the organisation (Min et al., 2019). There are certain parts and sources that are getting challenged. With the help of outsourcing the manufacturing and the production cost of different products and services by this organisation lowers. The outsourcing tool is used by Apple to become prominent in the world of information technology.

Apple as an organisation found a quick solution for a lower price and good quality. With the help of outsourcing, Apple is promoting and distributing its products in Europe, Asia, and China etc. These types of choices are faced by Apple with the help of outsourcing so they can develop different software and also improve their quality. one of the most important reasons for using outsourcing as a tool is the reduction of the project’s total cost (Cole et al., 2019). The next reason that is taken into consideration helps insulation management to the aspect of strategic planning as well as having more control over the core functions that are taking place in an organisation. The next advantage looks into finding different types of solutions to incapacity issues.

Global sourcing as a tool for Apple

Apple is a company that has moved on 700 to 800 suppliers in 31 countries. Most of these suppliers are spread throughout the world and Apple is an organisation that is developing through that. This is possible because of the global sourcing tools and strategies used by this organisation (Lockamy, 2017). With the help of global sourcing, Apple is being sustainable and also transparent with the customers throughout the world.

Global sourcing is used as a procurement strategy in strategic planning management and also a tool in supply chain management by the organisation to reach efficiency and deliver and search for products and services in a global scheme (Clarke and Boersma, 2017). The organisation is getting the advantage because they are getting to exploit different global efficiencies in the product and service. With the help of global sourcing, Apple is getting low-cost skills Labour and also low-cost raw material which is helping them in their production and manufacture.


Question 2- Organisation’s approach to quality, soft and hard network management

Organisation’s approach to quality

Apple is an organisation that focuses on the development of the quality in quality management systems. The organisation’s approach to quality is extreme because it offered a further word in different types of countries. This particular organisation looks into the country we should be approaching quality (Park, 2017). There are different types of consultants as well which helps this particular organisation to apply and implement several types of methods and technical tools for the enhancement of quality.

Apple can be considered as a multinational company that looks into the approach to quality in a serious manner because it develops throughout the world. There are several types of modifications that are made to sell customers the only services and customer electronics. After that, the strategic plans in the different types of objective scores and the approach to quality have a major emphasis on the responsibilities in social and quality factors (Van Weele and Van Raaij, 2014). Apple as an organisation focuses on different types of an adequate management system which looks into a proper approach for increasing and developing quality. The vision and mission of the organisation as well as the coals go through the strategic formulation and the strategic implementation through immense control for quality analysis.

The most important approach that can be seen in the quality management for supply chain management and strategic planning in this organisation focuses on the deduction and the reduction of different types of errors (Johnsen et al., 2018). Apple also focuses on the different types of activities that are seen in employees which improve the customer service and the experience as well. Supply chain management aims into focusing on the internal guidelines and standards so that no flow is detected in any types of products and services of the organisation.

Apple as an organisation is also committed to a high standard of work and products so that perfection can be delivered. Apple has also noted that quality is extremely necessary that is why the strategic planning and supply chain management practises and objectives have helped the manufacturing industry to deliver high-quality products (Barney, 2012). For the deliverance of proper quality, the control chart and different types of communication strategies have also been implemented.


Supply chain management in the organisation

The supply chain management practises of Apple are considered to be one of the best supply chain management practises because of the innovation and the design. The most important reason behind the trends and the importance of supply chain management is the way that Apple designs the inventory (Cousins et al., 2008). Back in 2011, there were certain types of comparisons made between Apple and other companies but using certain technology this particular company’s inventory cannot be replaced with anyone else. In a nutshell, the supply chain operation and supply chain management of Apple purchases different types of components and materials from different suppliers throughout the world.

All of these factors get shipped to the different assembly plants. After that, distribution outsourcing and global sourcing are also used for distributing channels such as retail stores and other distributions for the world (Li et al., 2006). It can be seen that Apple manages great inventory management and is pledging management because the components of the company and the strategies help them to deal with different suppliers for better relationships. After that for the dispersion rethinking and worldwide sourcing is likewise utilized for appropriate channels, for example, retail locations and different disseminations for the world.

It may very well be seen that Apple oversees an incredible stock administration and is swearing at the executives on the grounds that the parts of the organisation and the systems assist them to manage various providers for better connections.


‘Soft’ and ‘hard’ network management practices 

Soft and hard network management practises can be considered one of the most important aspects of the leadership and the workplace environment of Apple. Apple is an organisation that focuses on the store’s soft and hard network management practises because the incorporation of supply chain management is seen in the organization’s approach (Das and Teng, 2000). The company also focuses on the practises because these types of practices incorporate different types of supply chain management issues and is also evaluated through certain management practises.

The significance of supply strategy in relations to different types of examples can be seen in Apple because there are certain concepts and principles of supply chain management that have been endured by the organisation (Fawcett et al., 2008). This particular of my version elsewhere said principles of soft and hard supply chain and network management practise.

For taking into consideration the different types of aspects in hard and soft management practise the network security and the quality management of the organisation has to be taken into consideration. The hard management practises in the network allows accessing different types of software and verifying the identity with a certain physical device rather than relying on passwords and authentication codes (Fawcett et al., 2008). Technological factors of hard and soft tokens are used in this company for multiple factors of authorization access for several products and services in software.

Apple is an organisation that focuses on hardware and software security and it increases more security for better features. There are different types of hard and soft tokens in networking management practises that are used by Apple which looks into putting and requesting access and there are also certain types of cryptographic keys and security pins used by the organisation (Fawcett et al., 2008). Innovative components of hard and delicate tokens are utilized in this organization for various variables of approval access for a few items and administrations in programming.

Apple is an association that thoroughly centres on equipment and programming security and it expands greater security for the better highlights. There are various sorts of hard and delicate tokens in systems administration the board rehearses that are utilized by Apple which investigates inputting and mentioning access and there are additionally specific kinds of cryptographic keys and security pins utilized by the association (Das and Teng, 2000). Apple is an organisation that uses different types of soft and hard network management practices, but due to this their supply chain management aspects have improved. As different technologies have been used, that is why the supply chain aspects improve a lot. Global sourcing has also contributed to better management practices and networking management.


Question 3- Supply chain management relationship and competitive advantage

Relationships in supply chain management

Supply chain management has different types of spectrums for relationships. Relationships in supply chain management have been extremely important for Apple as an organisation. Supply chain management focuses mostly on making sure those different types of links in an organisation’s network are operating accurately. All these factors can be made sure if the relationship of the supply chain management is going properly (Das and Teng, 2000). Relationships play a very critical and important role in the supply chains and if the organisations don’t operate them in a proper manner they will feel that the ramifications from customers to the suppliers.

The relationships in supply chain management cover a lot of factors in the supply chain management spectrum. The term relationship is important in strategic management and strategic relationships as well. Relationship in supply chain management covers the internal relationships and the transactional relationships of Apple as an organisation as well. There are different types of relationships that are keeping together the community of supply chain management in Apple (Li et al., 2006). In the whole spectrum of the separation universe, Apple as an organisation looks into comparable social divisions. After that, the technological divisions are also taken into factor by different types of relationships in supply chain management.

It is extremely important to realise that the relationships seen in supply chain management are there to maintain the balance between the power and the influence of an organisation. The working relationships of Apple are with the suppliers and their customers. Businesses and especially Apple also considers calling relationships as partnerships but both of them are not exactly similar. The relationships look into the partnership and they can also effectively maintain the different types of factors in the supply chain (Li et al., 2006). Still, for an organisation like Apple, it is extremely important to maintain high communication and high trust by looking into mutual benefit relationships with the key customers and the suppliers.

It is important for Apple to look into the relationship of the supply chain management to develop strong and positive aspects in the success of the organisation. The ideal separation relationship which is seen in Apple boosts the suppliers and the customer can be connected with each other and they can always share different types of visibility of status and information. Within the company, it is good to build relationships because Apple as an organisation focuses on communication so that the products and services of the organisation can be improved (Barney, 2012). For moving successfully throughout different types of countries Apple as an organisation has to build and optimise the relationships in the supply chain because it is crucial for success in the long and short term as well.

Competitive Advantages

The competitive advantage of Apple is gained through certain outsourced and integrated supply chain management aspects. all these factors look into the resource-intensive as well as certain types of integrated logistics which gives certain competitive advantages and big opportunities to the organisation. Apple is a company that can manage the distribution fleet to ensure different types of rapid collection and the delivery of products and services to organisations and customers (Barney, 2012).

Another competitive advantage gained by this organisation is ensuring safety and a secure environment for the storage of integrations and products for software and hardware. After that, there are greater visibilities of codes that can be seen in the distribution system for Apple. We’re looking into an organisation where the avoidance of paying unnecessary costs for the logistic companies can also be seen as an actively competitive advantage for the organisation. As these types of costs are reduced the investment is increased in the betterment of products and services and that is why Apple can stay ahead of other companies (Cousins et al., 2008). Another competitive advantage of Apple which is the most important aspect for this organisation is the control of software and hardware. With the control of certain software, product differentiation is done by this company.

There are different types of retail strategies and supply management strategies used by this organisation through which the distribution system gets more opportunities than others. The upper hand of Apple is acquired through certain re-appropriated and incorporated inventory networks from the executive’s perspectives (Cousins et al., 2008). Every one of these variables investigates the asset seriously just as particular sorts of co-ordinations which gives certain upper hands and enormous freedoms to the association. Apple is an organization that can deal with the dispersion armada to guarantee various kinds of the fast assortment and the conveyance of items and administrations to associations and clients. Another upper hand acquired by this association is guaranteeing the wellbeing and secure climate for the capacity of mixes and items for programming and equipment.

Models and strategies

Total quality management

The total quality management aspect focuses on the streamlining of the entire supply chain in Apple. Apple is an organisation that focuses on total quality management and also increases its efforts in increasing quality. This particular strategy includes different types of things from the starting line to the finishing line (Van Weele and Van Raaij, 2014). This is also important in supply chain management because a different type of training for the employees and ensuring customer satisfaction is also seen. Reverse logistics is an important part of total quality management which is seen in these Supply chain aspects of Apple. [Refer to Figure 2]

Figure 2: Total Quality Management

(Source: Van Weele and Van Raaij, 2014)

Customer relationship management

Customer relationship management focuses on the partners which impact customer relationships. This aspect is also related to the supply chain management practises of Apple because different types of impressions are left on the buyer with the marketing and the fulfilment of the organisation (Van Weele and Van Raaij, 2014). The customer service and retention of loyalty in the organisation are also seen engaging with the help of customer relationship management. [Refer to Figure 3]

Figure 3: Customer Relationship Management

(Source: Van Weele and Van Raaij, 2014)


The information gathered in this report has been taken from several articles and journals. The information can also be used further in the research process of supply chain management. The report constitutes the significance and implementation of different types of supply chain management aspects of Apple as a leading organisation. The strategies and frameworks used by the organisation have been focused on. The significance of the supply chain in relation to the management practices have been evaluated in the research paper as well. The impact of managing innovation has also been discussed in the paper by drawing certain examples. The supply chain activities of the organisation have been highlighted in this paper by giving certain importance to the sources used for Apple. The organisation uses outsourcing and global sourcing, these factors are mentioned in the paper. The supply chain management activities have impacted with the help of soft and hard networks which has also been seen.

Share this Post