Simulation of the supply chain is vital for companies. Simulation identifies the market and product dynamics of a company. It also improves the services rendered to a company’s clients. Nikon has lately focused its attention to improving the effectiveness of its supply chains.
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UPS has helped the company to have a fully synchronized supply chain that is quite effective. UPS took up the task of coming up with an integrative supply chain to help the company to introduce a new product line (Nikon, 2010).
United Parcel Services was able to come up with an integrated, yet not sophisticated, supply chain solution that saw Nikon have the capacity to control inbound flight and ocean freight. The concept was put in simulation and the company was quite happy with progress that was realized. Initially, the company would have to wait and to have its products shipped specifically due to their delicate nature (Nikon, 2010).
The goods had to be repackaged using other human resource which added onto the cost for the company. UPS however came up with software that could disembark the whole product into parts way before the departure of the flight.
This was meant to enable it use as minimal space as possible which is one of the requirements of an effective supply chain. This also ensured there was little space used when packaging products which is also important to save on the cost associated with the supply chain.
This was highly beneficial to the company as it reduced the length of the supply chain which served the purpose of increasing the availability of the company‘s products in the market. Therefore, it increased profits for the company (Nikon, 2010).
The software employed the use a machine that could easily dissemble products of a company that had similar features quite fast. Once that was done a person would be involved in putting the parts together for a particular product. This was very fast and efficient. When all was complete the company would employ the services of cranes that would pack the goods either in a ship or an aero plane.
The software can even estimate the space that would be needed for a particular product sample to be fully packaged (Chang et al. 2010). Compared to human product handling, the software is quite economical as it reduces the advent of damaging the product as the process of transfer from one mode to another is done.
The process also upholds most of the principles of an efficient supply chain. These include ergonomic principle, safety principle and cost principle among others (Saunders, 2000).
In the modern world it is paramount to focus energy on the effectiveness of the whole supply chain and the above software ahs the capacity to deliver just that. Once the journey is complete, the software is able to get the product to shape (Winsberg, 2001). Some of the products that use this software, which gets instructions from a central person, are cameras.
It helps to keep them in god condition and to enhance the need for lesser human handling. It is also used in manufacturing as it is able estimate the different sizes of the diverse parts and to inform the engineers. It is computer aided and has the capacity to make supply chains more efficient in future (Hertel, 2002).
Chang, Y. et al. (2010). Supply Chain Modeling Using Simulation. Simulation Journal, 2(1), 21-35.
Hertel, J. (2002). Using Simulations to Promote Learning in Higher Education. Sterling, Virginia: Stylus.
Nikon. (2010). Nikon Focuses On Supply Chain Simulation. Web.
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Saunders, D. (2000). The International Simulation and Gaming Research Yearbook. London: Kogan Page.
Winsberg, E. (2001). Simulations, Models and Theories: Complex Physical Systems and their Representations. Philosophy of Science 68(4), 442–454.