This article examines the transition from cooperation to collaboration in the supply chain. The manufacturerretail supply chain is analysed from three perspectives: strategic policy, process integration and community practice. Critical success factors for implementing effective e-collaboration in the supply chain are de- fined from the authors experience of action research (Perkins & Dingley, 2001; Cox, Krasniewicz, Perkins, & Cox, 2006). The article concludes by considering the future trends and challenges of e-collaboration in the supply chain.
Key Terms in this Chapter
E-Collaboration System: A computer-based system that is accessed and used by more than one organisation to support business transactions in the supply chain. The system allows data to be automatically updated in a partner organisation’s systems during the processing of a transaction.
Supply Chain Management: Aligning internal business processes to respond to information received from the customer-supplier interface, and to provide accurate information to the interface, in order to co-ordinate the reliable and timely supply of goods and services to members of the supply chain.
Supply Chain Cooperation: Aligning the activities of two or more organisations in the supply chain to coordinate the supply of goods or services, creating a competitive advantage through improved service or efficiency improvements.
Supply Chain: Two or more directly dependent organisations vertically aligned such that the outputs of one provides goods or services that are essential inputs to the value chain of the other. Physical supply chains are inventory-based; virtual supply chains are information-based.
Internet Technologies: Communication based information technology, including network protocols and communication mechanisms that enable data transmission within and between geographically dispersed organisations to support formal business processes across interfirm networks.
Collaborative Practice: The ways of working that emerge between communities of practice as they work towards the achievement of common goals.
E-Collaboration: The use of information technology to establish, facilitate and sustain cooperation between two geographically dispersed parties, who have common goals, to enable them to work together for mutual benefit.
Supply Chain Collaboration: Integrating the business processes of two or more organisations in the supply chain, embedding activities to form a jointly-owned emerging system with shared goals.
Community Of Practice: The emergent process of social learning as a group of people with shared values, beliefs, and goals work together towards a common aim.