Discussion Board Replies/Entering Global Markets


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(Reply to these 3 posts) (Original Content Only) (100 words per reply) (in-text citations and references are a must)

1. Key Term and Why You Are Interested in It


  • Key Term and Why You Are Interested in It

In the era of rapid growth in technology, e-commerce industry is transforming and developing around the globe. My academic curiosity led me to select the key term “e-commerce” and its growing impact on various facets of society, technology, business, and economy. For instance, it is a multifaceted and interdisciplinary landscape that provides job opportunities, as well as gives insight into entrepreneurial opportunities. The future trends in e-commerce intrigued me the most, as the labor market is changing. The job roles and employment opportunities are evolving because they are replaced by automation, AI integration and highly developed software’s.

  • Explanation of the Key Term

E-commerce refers to the process of dealing business i.e., transactions of goods and services via electronic means of communication. It appears to be a digital market place that is controlled and operated via websites, software/mobile applications, and newly developed online market places/stores. People conduct their business digitally around the globe. There are two general types of e-commerce i.e. business-to-business (B2B), where companies operate business with suppliers, distributors and other partners via electronic networks and business-to-consumer (B2C) where company sells products to consumers directly (Yan Tian, 2008). Moreover, e-commerce is dependent on digital marketing strategies, search engine optimization and social media engagement etc.

  • Major Article Summary

The article “What Impact Will E-Commerce Have on the U.S Economy” by Jonathan L. Willis states that in the U.S e-commerce appears to be fastest growing sector. Along with the highly technologically operated physical industry there is still trend of digitally operated business like e-commerce. E-commerce has great impact on the economy of the country. It influences productivity level and has potential to control inflation to great extent. It helps in decreasing the cost in relation to traditional shopping methods. This in turn increases productivity level. E-commerce has emerged as an increasingly popular ways for transactions between buyers and sellers. All the affairs are controlled via electronic networks. For e-commerce to flourish, incentives should meet both buyers and sellers needs and requirements. For instance, seller’s benefits from low transaction cost while buyers experiences cheaper purchases through e-commerce. E-firms may experience lower advertising cost via efficient supply chain management. In conclusion, high use of e-commerce will influence the economy in two possible ways: higher productivity and potential downward pressure on prices and inflation. While increased completion in e-commerce can lead to faster technological innovations and efficient cost-saving measures in business. E-commerce contributes in high productivity and low cost (Willis, 2012).


  • The cited work revolves around the central idea of e-commerce in general. For instance, the concept of e-commerce is deeply rooted from long ago, while on other hand new developments and innovations are changing the trends and business skills. Both buyers and sellers are the key parties in e-commerce which divides it into two broad categories i.e. B2B AND B2C, discussed above. In today’s world of technology everything is operated virtually, business around the globe is conducted digitally on different platforms. E-commerce will affect the level, not the growth rate of productivity in long term because increasing innovations leads to further improvement and development.
  • The cited work shows the importance of e-commerce and its impact on business dealings. As discussed earlier, AI is widely used in e-commerce and financial sectors. It insures standardized and reliable quality control methods, while improving strategies for the customers (Harikumar Pallathadka, 2021). For instance, there is high risk of fraud and hacking in e-commerce, turnover in e-commerce leads to payment fraud. They take extra risk management for online retailers like by adding general risk premium to prices. They limit transactions to customer-specific basis only. They also deal and look at risks associated with different ways of payment (Markus Ruch, 2012).

2. Key Term and Why You Are Interested in It

The key term I’m interested in is “continuous improvement (CI) and Kaizen.” The terms have appeared within my industry over the last decade and continue to gain attention. The term Continuous
Improvement is without a doubt something that is occurring with us each week and each assignment. Not only is this something that is translated to our education, but also a concept applied to everyday life. When running a business or learning to run one, an owner, manager, or person of responsibility it is important they must seek to always find ways to improve and continue to grow. Seeking to better understand this term felt was the correct one to choose for this assignment.

2. Explanation of the Key Term

Continuous improvement is a key area to examine in today’s international business. Satterlee (2023) wrote that continuous improvement “is a management technique that historically involves several incremental improvements to a process rather than a single overpowering improvement or change” (p 228.) This term is sometimes used with the Japanese term, Kaizen. Continuous improvement has been given different definitions over the last 30 years, but one thing has stayed consistent. Carnerud et al. (2018) wrote the focus of continuous improvement process “is on engaging all people in the organization to achieve more productivity, quality, well-being, ergonomics and effectiveness.” Continuous improvement is a philosophy taken by an organization to eliminate waste. This waste can be through lost time, wasted materials, and wasted efforts.

3. Major Article Summary

The major article reviewed was titled “Kaizen and Continuous Improvement – Trends and Patterns Over 30 Years.” In this article, Carnerud et al. discuss the history of continuous improvement and Kaizen. The authors also discuss the differences between the two terms. It was mentioned in our textbook that continuous improvement and Kaizen are synonymous terms, but there are differences. The authors discussed that there has been an increased interest in CI and Kaizen since the late 1990’s. Carnerud et al. (2018) stated that “one of the principal objectives of the implementation of Kaizen and CI is the improvement of quality and productivity in targeted activities and processes.” The authors also discussed the benefits of CI and Kaizen have not been recorded into useful data. The study also stated that there is a clear bond between Kaizen and quality management, but without sufficient data, it is difficult to understand the Kaizen concept in quality management processes. Another good point that Carnerud et al. (2018) discussed was the idea that Kaizen “encourages workers to think positively, convincing them that everyone in the company can contribute by thinking of and giving ideas for improvement.” Lastly, the authors discussed that there is a difference between continuous improvement and Kaizen, but it’s easier to look at them synonymously with a certain
function, e.g., quality management. Both are forms of process improvement.

4. Discussion

Major Article Relates to Explanation and Assigned Module

The article written by Carnerud, Jaca, and Backstrom was a good description of continuous improvement and Kaizen. This isn’t just a top to bottom approach to process changes. The point with CI and Kaizen is to get everyone aware of the need for change and get everyone on board to make the change. Informing employees in an organization of the need for change gets everyone on the same page. The organization completes the tasks at hand, and everyone benefits from the changes. Targeting areas of change and correcting those areas is an objective of the continuous improvement process. There aren’t many differences between CI and Kaizen, but the differences must be complex. It’s easier to consider the 2 synonymous rather than treating CI and Kaizen differently.

Major Article Relates to Other Four Works Researched

There were four other articles used for this review and I will discuss their relation to the key terms of continuous improvement and Kaizen. The first article that was used was “Kaizen, a Continuous Improvement Practice in Organizations: A Comparative Study in Companies from Mexico and Ecuador.” In this article the authors discussed CI in two Latin American countries and the struggles to maintain the continuous improvement. The next article used for this review is “Application of Continuous Improvement Techniques to Improve Organization Performance: A Case Study.” In this document the authors use continuous improvement techniques in an interior design company who is currently facing challenges. Employee morale was studied as a part of the continuous improvement. Khan et al. (2019) concluded “Employee morale is directly related to company productivity, thus keeping their morals high will enhance productivity.” The next article used for this discussion board was “Key Lessons to Maintain Continuous Improvement: A Case Study of Four Companies.” In this article, CI was discussed through factors and barriers based on a company’s maturity level. The last article used was “Linking Continuous Improvement to Manufacturing Performance.” This article discussed the importance of increasing efficiency and quality of products using continuous improvement.

3. Supply Chain Management and Why I am Interested in It

I am interested in Supply Chain Management (SCM) because I have done much research on this topic in a prior course. During that research, it amazed me how much the day-to-day business growth and development depend on SCM. For businesses to compete, they must go with the most efficient and effective way to develop a product, produce it, manufacture it, sell, and deliver it. Based on my research, much of this depends on many outsourcing partners and SCMs in today’s business. Business models have changed over the years, from suppliers being organizations that fed into the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) to now suppliers are business partners, working together on strategies as partners to be the most cost-efficient for each partner and the most profitable. They do this by sharing technology and data to be more streamline to each other, using software such as an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tool that electronically identifies parts, inventory, billing, invoicing, and payment processing between each other for further efficiency. Even though many of the technologies merged, when COVID-19 hit the world, it shut down many of the suppliers’ plants, manufacturing plants, and transporting was detained or altogether canceled, which left a high disruption in Supply Chain Management.

  • Explanation of the Key Term Supply Chain Management

According to Satterlee (2019), supply chain management (SCM) is a major concern for managers in two significant ways. First, a wrong decision in the SCM design could result in a rapid loss of expertise and competitive nature by splitting supplier relationships across multiple sites, geography, and businesses. Secondly, if properly managed the organizations are recognized as having a competitive advantage, experience long term success and can make rapid and confident decisions. A dynamic SCM system is significant, and results of global management surveys indicate that efficient supply chain management is critical to their long-term success. Satterlee indicates that an efficient supply chain management system must be built of five fundamental principles: 1) Concurrent versus serial planning across the supply chain (synchronization) 2) global insight – grasp the global impact of local changes 3) Constraint management – recognize and minimize the impact of constraints 4) Build in business optimization- the ability to recommend operational solutions to changing business scenarios and 5) warning -when local changes occur, immediately notify stakeholders on term of sales, inventory, downtime, etc. Each of these five fundamental principles will support the overall goal of achieving maximum customer responsiveness at the least possible cost. Tools such as forecasting, distribution, inventory planning, and e-commerce allow organizational processes to be centered across supply chains. There are many reasons for contributing to the success of an organization’s supply chain. It depends on how efficiently the organization can take a customer request and turn it into a product or service. It is also important to have the ability to adapt to market shifts or changes in customer demand. The level of integration between suppliers will impact the organization’s effectiveness in supply chain management (Satterlee, 2019).

  • Major Article Summary

According to the World Health Organization (2023), the Covid-19 epidemic hit the entire world and was declared a pandemic on January 10, 2020. Lockdowns started happening all over the United States and the world. As of August 2023, there were over 770 million confirmed Covid-19 cases, and over 6.9 million deaths globally have been reported (WHO, 2023).

According to Kumar (2021), business-to-business (B2B) firms have traditionally encountered disruptions but never to the scale of the Covid-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic interrupted global chain suppliers by causing unprecedented shocks to supply and demand. Organizations experienced enormous pressure and struggled to reduce the immediate and long-term impact of the supply chain disruptions. There has been an increase in global connectivity between people and markets, but the COVID-19 crisis is an unprecedented disruption, which caused long-term changes such as reducing new endeavors, causing firms to shift to remote work, and changing communication patterns. Post World War II history global economies have not witnessed such a disruption as the impact of Covid-19 and has caused uncertainty of the collective experience of individuals who represent various stakeholders in the SCM (Kumar, 2021). Many organizations develop disaster recovery plans in case of major outages and disruptions and have a plan in place for the recovery of systems, processes, and continued business. There should also be a disaster recovery plan for supply chain management.

4. Discussion

A. How does the cited work relate to your above explanation AND how it relates specifically to the content of the assigned module?

Due to dependency on supply chain management (SCM) in today’s international business, and the possibility of a large disruption such as the Covid-19 pandemic, it is essential to look at the entire process of the supply chain and look for areas of stability, and when there could be bottlenecks or disruptions if something major like Covid-19 happens again.

Per Kumar (2021), Research has been done to examine chaos theory, in the supply chain, the upstream, midstream, and downstream supply chains faced during Covid-19 to understand this low-probability, high-impact event that threatens the viability of an organization. Due to the COVID-19 major disruption, and the possibility of other such as bankruptcies, tsunamis, and financial crisis, have had researchers studying the resilience at firms and network levels and how it impacts supply chain functions such as warehousing, transportation, and labor. It is a good idea to focus on disaster management centers, infrastructural restoration, and transportation management, and develop a deeper understanding of disruptions in the supply chain. In understanding that ‘Chaos theory’ needs to be developed into a disaster recovery plan, conducting business through traditional processes may be impossible under chaotic conditions, but ‘Chaos theory’ strategies can help businesses to understand what decision-making processes should be taken through a major disruption. With its genesis in physical science, chaos theory characterizes a nonlinear dynamic system that reconciles the elements of unpredictability which determines positivism, which ignores most systems’ complexity and diversity (Kumar, 2021).

B. How does the cited work relate to the other 4 works you researched?

Per the disruption of forecasting in inventory management in supply chain flow by Barrow (2016), inventory control is important, and relies on accurate and robust forecasts of future demand. Barrow suggests that there be more than just one model of forecasting, to improve accuracy, and manage the uncertainty, which leads to forecast errors (Barrow, 2016). Barrows’s discussion of having numerous forecast models would be effective and focus on improving accuracy, reducing forecast errors, and less sensitive to a single model. COVID-19 was not any model that could have been planned for. There may be no model for this major disruption only a model of decision-making at each level of the SCM.

In the article on inventory control systems, per Gel (2010), the economic impact of inventory inaccuracies due to complexity can be significant. Pressures for high customer service levels have placed a strong emphasis on control of material flow. Companies are constantly in search of efficient systems and procedures to manage system improvements using data and simplifying the process (Gel, 2010). This article explained the intense complexity of supply chain management and inventory inaccuracies in a stable system. COVID-19, which was unusual, shows that even the best systems and processes could not have been planned for in this disruption.

Per the inventory deterioration model by Jaggi (2015), the formulation of inventory models often presumes that all items are of perfect quality. However, inventory can be mishandled, and goods can get damaged or broken in the production process which causes a risk. These goods will need to be re-ordered, which impacts the demand, cost, planning, and production timeline (Jaggi, 2015). In Jaggi’s article, which discusses the preservation of the product at each level of the supply chain, to plan properly for goods to be preserved and mishandled, would have been almost impossible due to the large disruption of the Covid-19 pandemic. Managers do not know which part of the supply chain would be the broken link until it happened.

Per Xinbao (2019), with advances in wireless communication technologies service providers and suppliers monitor the health status of each product and then conduct condition-based maintenance of each product. This becomes integrated into the traditional supply chain and replacement policies and inventory control expected from the supplier (Xinbao, 2019). In the chaos theory which is now being looked at as a disaster recovery for supply chain management, the Internet of Things (IoT) and wireless communication is the utmost importance in monitoring the supply chain movement and transactions.

In the article about blockchain-based cloud manufacturing by Mantegna (2022), technology spillovers in information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) are disrupting traditional supply chains, leading to a substantial improvement in digital innovation and business modeling in manufacturing. Blockchain-based information systems (IS) and cloud manufacturing (CM) process systems were integrated into a supply chain management (SCM) system for a multi-hierarchal system (Mantegna, 2022). The importance of blockchain-based information is essential to the chaos theory of developing a disaster recovery system for supply chain management.

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