Supply chain management (SCM) is a term applied to a management philosophy and to the practices involved in implementing a SCM philosophy, although it can also be used to describe management processes that are not necessarily rooted in a guiding philosophy. SCM, which gained prominence as outsourcing become prevalent in the 1990s, brings together and extends the concerns of total quality management (TQM) and just-in-time (J-I-T) management techniques that preceded it.

As a management philosophy, SCM is a systems approach that involves assembling a team of upstream (suppliers) and downstream (distributors and end users) partners with a common goal of satisfying a particular customer value or set of values. This outlook recognizes the interdependency of team members and attempts to foster a cooperative effort that will ...

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