The 3 Levels Of Supply Chain Management And How They Effect Your Business

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Supply chain management is the process of planning, organizing, and coordinating the flow of materials and information among the various stages of a business to meet customer demand. It is a critical element of any company that wants to grow and maintain its competitive edge.

KEY Takeaways

  • Strategic planning looks at the big-picture and focuses on long-terms decisions. It sets broad goals and provides direction for the entire operation.
  • Tactical planning sets goals and objectives within the scope of that strategy.
  • Operational execution ensures that the plans are implemented properly.

Supply chain management is the process of managing the flow of materials and products through an organization from their source to their final destination. Supply chain management aims to ensure that products are delivered on time, cost-effectively, and in the proper condition.

The 3 Levels of Supply Chain Management: Strategic, tactical and operational

The three levels of supply chain management are strategic, tactical and operational.

1. Strategic Planning

This level of supply chain management is responsible for developing long-term plans that outline the company's overall objectives and goals. It includes identifying and assessing the company's strengths and weaknesses, making strategic decisions about where to focus resources, and creating a vision for the future.

This level of planning looks at the big picture and focuses on long-term decisions. This includes decisions such as:

- Single sources vs multiple suppliers

- Technology sharing

- Location decisions

2. Tactical Planning

Tactical planning involves developing specific plans to achieve specific objectives within the scope of the strategic plan. These plans may include setting targets, establishing priorities, and designing strategies to achieve those targets.

Tactical planning is focused on specific goals and objectives. This includes:

- Purchasing strategies

- Transportation

- Warehouse locations and distribution centers

- Distribution channels

3. Operational Execution

Operational execution is responsible for implementing the tactical plans into action to achieve them. This includes coordinating with various departments within the company, setting up systems and procedures to support execution, and ensuring that all stakeholders are kept informed of progress throughout the process.

Operational planning is focused on day-to-day tasks and details how these tasks should be carried out to achieve the company's objectives. This includes:

- Setting schedules

- Maintaining inventory levels

- Coordinating resources

- Ensuring quality, on-time delivery and cost


Effective supply chain management is essential for any business. By understanding the three levels and how to implement them, you can ensure your company's success. Each level has its own set of challenges and priorities, which must be balanced to achieve success. Failure to do so can lead to wasted resources and lost profits.

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