One of the key elements of supply chain management (SCM), the design of the agility strategy remains a major challenge for a range of companies due to the need to embrace a huge number of factors prior to responding to a specific issue properly.
Hewlett-Packard is one of the organizations that manage to handle the agility issue properly owing to the Agility program, which HP has developed for addressing the issues concerning [postponement in transactions with overseas partners. Although HP has several delays in delivering the end product and retrieving supplies from its partners, the agility program that Hewlett-Packard has designed creates the premises for the organization to manage its supply chains quite successfully.
It is quite remarkable that the above-mentioned Agility Alliance features Microsoft as HP’s key partner. In other words, the organization is determined to involve other firms into the alliance to work on the search for the agility improvement tools.
As the recent report shows, the dynamic SCM (Enterprise Services Alliances, 2015), which HP and Microsoft have formed over the years of their cooperation, can be viewed as a solid platform for further evolution of the very concept of agility: “This alliance provides development, management and modernization for your mission-critical applications and infrastructure” (Microsoft – HP Agility Alliance Partnership, 2015).
Therefore, HP faces a significant challenge at the moment. The current SCM strategy adopted by Hewlett-Packard could use major improvements, primarily due to the wrong choice of the suppliers and the inconsistencies in defining the firm’s priorities. As a means of addressing the problem, HP has created the program that allows for being supported by a partner; however, the above-mentioned measure also triggers mild distortions on the company’s SCM.
Particularly, the approach undertaken by HP does not presuppose an immediate change to the design of Hewlett-Packard’s SCM design; instead, the development of the program mentioned above requires an impressive amount of time and cannot be viewed as the tool for an immediate resolution of the situation (HP drives business agility with new systems and innovations in infrastructure management, 2014).
It would be wrong to claim that HP’s competitors have designed an impeccable approach towards the SCM related processes. Acer, for instance, employs the approach known as vertical disintegration (Vertical disintegration in supply chain management (SCM), 2014), which means that the company retrieves certain components from several manufacturers instead of one.
Consequently, Acer’s cost management strategy cannot be deemed as reasonable. Dell, on the other hand, is a perfect example of supply chain management done right. The built-to-order model created by Dell helps increase customer satisfaction rates several times by improving the company’s quality standards (Dell modifies its supply chain strategy, 2015).
Despite the fact that HP cannot be deemed as the organization that delivers its products and retrieves the required supplies from its vendors on time, the strategy that the organization adopts in designing a better approach towards procurement clearly deserves appreciation.
As a result, what might seem as a careless attitude towards an essential element of the corporate strategy becomes a minor dent in the overall strong design of the firm’s SCM approach. Despite the fact that HP may have certain problems in the choice of its suppliers, as well as with the compliance with deadlines, the consistent effort of Hewlett-Packard’s leader and managers shows that the firm has an elaborate strategy that will help it stay afloat in the global economy.
Enterprise Services Alliances. (2015).