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What Is a Case Study?

When you’re performing research as part of your job or for a school assignment, you’ll probably come across case studies that help you to learn more about the topic at hand. But what is a case study and why are they helpful? Read on to learn all about case studies.

Deep Dive into a Topic

At face value, a case study is a deep dive into a topic. Case studies can be found in many fields, particularly across the social sciences and medicine. When you conduct a case study, you create a body of research based on an inquiry and related data from analysis of a group, individual or controlled research environment.

As a researcher, you can benefit from the analysis of case studies similar to inquiries you’re currently studying. Researchers often rely on case studies to answer questions that basic information and standard diagnostics cannot address.

Study a Pattern

One of the main objectives of a case study is to find a pattern that answers whatever the initial inquiry seeks to find. This might be a question about why college students are prone to certain eating habits or what mental health problems afflict house fire survivors. The researcher then collects data, either through observation or data research, and starts connecting the dots to find underlying behaviors or impacts of the sample group’s behavior.

Gather Evidence

During the study period, the researcher gathers evidence to back the observed patterns and future claims that’ll be derived from the data. Since case studies are usually presented in the professional environment, it’s not enough to simply have a theory and observational notes to back up a claim. Instead, the researcher must provide evidence to support the body of study and the resulting conclusions.

Present Findings

As the study progresses, the researcher develops a solid case to present to peers or a governing body. Case study presentation is important because it legitimizes the body of research and opens the findings to a broader analysis that may end up drawing a conclusion that’s more true to the data than what one or two researchers might establish. The presentation might be formal or casual, depending on the case study itself.

Draw Conclusions

Once the body of research is established, it’s time to draw conclusions from the case study. As with all social sciences studies, conclusions from one researcher shouldn’t necessarily be taken as gospel, but they’re helpful for advancing the body of knowledge in a given field. For that purpose, they’re an invaluable way of gathering new material and presenting ideas that others in the field can learn from and expand upon.


a case study on supply chain

Cropped SCM Globe logo

Supply Chain Management Design & Simulation Online

Supply Chain Case Studies

SCM Globe comes with a library of case studies that explore COMMERCIAL , HUMANITARIAN , and MILITARY supply chains (see below).

The case studies range from relatively simple beginning cases like Cincinnati Seasonings , to quite challenging advanced cases such as Zara Clothing Company , or Nepal Earthquake Disaster Response .  Case studies are laboratories where you apply what you learn in lectures and readings to solve supply chain problems in highly realistic simulations. Each case has a " CASE STUDY CONCEPT " showing the supply chain principles and practices highlighted in that case.


A map of Spain with a logistics hub circled in green and a manufacturing facility in red. There are arrows pointing at it and lines extending out. There is a data window to the sides.

The case studies presently available in the SCM Globe library are shown below. You are welcome to use any or all of them as you wish (you can also create your own case studies or we can create them for you). They are listed in the three categories. As you work with these cases you will gain an intuitive understanding of supply chain dynamics and develop the analytical skills for designing and managing real supply chains.

We recommend people new to SCM Globe start with the  Cincinnati Seasonings case study . Work individually at first, not in groups. Do the three challenges shown in the online introduction to Cincinnati Seasonings. That's how you'll learn to use the software, and how to use simulations to analyze and design supply chains. Then you will be ready to work in groups or work on more advanced cases.  Click on the case studies below to see a description and introduction to each case.

Commercial Supply Chain Case Studies

A map of New York with supply chain routes highlighted in blue.

Collaborative Supply Chains

A satellite picture of the Luanda port in Angola showing high lighted routes between locations.

S&J Trading Company – Angola

A screenshot from SCM Globe zoomed out to a scale which shows the 'Java Furniture Company' global supply chain superimposed on a map of the world.

Java Furniture Company – Indonesia

Picture of a map from the SCM Globe app showing the suppply chain route from Cincinnati to Louisville.

Cincinnati Seasonings

Map of a supply chain of the Roman Empire that supplied olive oil to Rome

Supply Chains of the Roman Empire

Silk Road in SCM Globe Simulation

Ancient Silk Road – First Global Supply Chain

A screenshot of the Zara supply chain showing how products flow from factories to stores

Zara Clothing Company Supply Chain

screenshot of Fantastic Corporation's global supply chain

Fantastic Corporation – Global Supply Chain

Simulation on SCM Globe showing Unexpected Disruptions

Fantastic Corporation – Unexpected Disruptions

Humanitarian supply chain case studies.

A map of Dresden with blue and orange lines on it.

Disaster Response Supply Chains: Flooding Scenario

Map of Nepal Earthquake humanitarian facilities

Nepal Earthquake Disaster Response Supply Chain

A satellite image of the Hama Military Airport and the western part of Hama with a route highlighted in blue.

Humanitarian Supply Chains: Syria Evacuation Scenario (CIV and MIL)

Military supply chain case studies.

Satellite picture of the Japanese campaign in Burma.

Burma Campaign – 1944 Invasion of India

A map of Prussia, Poland, Lithuania, and Belarus. There are blue lines, icons, and numbered shapes representing the military facilities and locations.

Battle of Smolensk – 1941 Invasion of Russia

Alexander the Great Banner

Alexander the Great Needed Great Supply Chains

New case studies.

New cases are added based on projects we do with instructors, students, and supply chain professionals. Here are the new supply chain models in the library:

Interactive Supply Chain Case Studies

Every case study has a main theme or concept that it illustrates. You will be challenged to use knowledge acquired in lectures and readings as well as your own real-world experience to expand and re-design the supply chains in these case studies.

In the commercial supply chain cases you need to improve and expand the supply chains to support new stores and still keep operating costs and inventory as low as possible. In cases that deal with humanitarian or military missions you need to create supply chains to deliver the right supplies to the right locations when they are needed, and do so at a reasonable cost.

A satellite picture of the Luanda port in Angola showing high lighted routes between locations.

We are glad to provide a  free evaluation account  to instructors, students and supply chain professionals interested in exploring SCM Globe simulations — click here to request an account —  Get Your Free Trial Demo  

See SCM Globe pricing for Academic and Business versions of the software.

The best case to start with is Cincinnati Seasonings . After working through the three challenges presented in the online introduction to this case you will be ready to handle further challenges in this case or move on to more advanced cases. Get a quick introduction to working with case studies in “ Working with Case Studies “.

Screenshots of the Cincinnati Seasonings case study in the SCM Globe application.

As problems are found in the simulations, you make decisions about how to fix them. Make changes to your supply chain model in the Edit screen. Then go to the Simulate screen and run a simulation to see the results of your changes. Depending on the changes you make, your supply chain simulation runs for additional days and other problems arise. As you address these problems you see about how supply chains work. Apply what you learn in readings and and lectures plus your work experience to solve the problems you encounter.

Keep improving your supply chain model until you get the simulation to run for 30+ days. Then download your simulation results and create a monthly Profit & Loss Report plus KPIs (as shown below). This provides an objective basis for evaluating the merits of different supply chain solutions.

spreadsheet reporting template showing monthly profit and loss for Cincinnati Seasonings

Monthly Profit & Loss Reports identify areas for improvement. They help you improve your supply chain to keep it running for 30 days and also lower operating costs and inventory levels. You can work on lowering the carbon footprint of your supply chain too. These are the challenges you address in SCM Globe, and they are the same challenges people face when managing real supply chains. What works well in the simulations will also work well with actual supply chains. Skills you develop in working with the simulations are directly transferable to the real world.

NOTE: You can run simulations for longer than 30 – 60 days, but there is usually no reason to do so. This is because most companies do not run their supply chains unchanged for longer than 30 days at a time. They use a 30 day S&OP ( sales and operations planning ) cycle and these simulations correspond to that monthly S&OP cycle. These simulations focus on the tactical realities of operating a supply chain from one month to the next, and finding what works best.

Accessing the Case Study Library

As shown in the screenshots below, logon to your account and access the case study library from your Account Management screen. Click on the “View Library” button (arrow 1) in upper right corner of the Account Management screen. In the Library screen you see a list of available supply chain case studies; click “ Import ” to load a selected case study into your account; give the imported case a Name , and click “ My Account ” to go back to your Account Management screen.

You are welcome to import any or as many of the supply chain models in the library as you wish. Once you have a copy of a supply chain model in your own account you can make any changes you want to it.

Screenshot of Account Screen and library screen

In Account Management, you “ Create a New Supply Chain ” or work with an existing supply chain by clicking the “ Edit ” button (arrow 2) next to the existing supply chain you want to work on. You can also upload copies of supply chain models sent to you by other SCM Globe users (arrow 3) , and check your account expiration date (arrow 4) .

Use Default Values or Enter New Data for Case Studies

When you load any of the case study supply chain models from the SCM Globe library, they come with default numbers already plugged in. You can either accept the defaults or do some research to find more current data. This data (like data and prices everywhere) changes all the time.

Look for data on products, facilities and vehicles that are used in your supply chain and see what their specifications and costs are. Costs can vary widely in different parts of the world (a useful website for commercial real-estate prices in North America is ). Exact numbers are often hard to find, so make your best estimates and cite the sources of your information.

Metric System of Weights and Measures

In the case studies all weights, volumes, distances and speeds are expressed using the metric system. The metric system is used around the world in every country except three: Liberia; Myanmar; and the United States. So it is good for supply chain professionals to feel comfortable with the metric system.

Register on SCM Globe for Access to all Supply Chain Simulations

Click the blue "Register" button on the app login page, and buy an account with a credit card or PayPal (unless you already have one). Then scan the "Getting Started" section, and you are ready to start. Go to the SCM Globe library and click "Import" next to the supply chain models you want.

SupplyChain →

No results found in working knowledge.

Logistics Bureau

7 Mini Case Studies: Successful Supply Chain Cost Reduction and Management

May 25, 2019 | Cost Saving | 28 comments

a case study on supply chain

If you were to tell me that your company had never looked at its supply chain costs and sought to deliver reductions, I would be mightily surprised. On the other hand, if you told me your company hasn’t been able to sustain any progress in supply chain cost reduction, I wouldn’t be surprised at all.

Most companies begin with the best intentions to achieve successful and sustainable supply chain cost management, but somehow seem to lose momentum, only to see costs increase again in short order.

The following seven mini case studies explore a few high-profile companies that have managed to sustain their supply chain cost-reduction efforts and keep expenses under control. The challenges faced by these organisations and the steps they took, may provide some inspiration for successful long-term cost management within your organisation.

1. Deere & Company

Successful Supply Chain Cost Management Case Study - Deere and Company

Deere & Company (brand name John Deere) is famed for the manufacture and supply of machinery used in agriculture, construction, and forestry, as well as diesel engines and lawn care equipment. In 2014, Deere & Company was listed 80th in the Fortune 500 America’s ranking and was 307th in the 2013 Fortune Global 500 ranking.

Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenges: Deere and Company has a diverse product range, which includes a mix of heavy machinery for the consumer market, and industrial equipment, which is made to order. Retail activity is extremely seasonal, with the majority of sales occurring between March and July.

a case study on supply chain

The company was replenishing dealers’ inventory weekly, using direct shipment and cross-docking operations from source warehouses located near Deere & Company’s manufacturing facilities. This operation was proving too costly and too slow, so the company launched an initiative to achieve a 10% supply chain cost reduction within four years.

The Path to Cost Reduction: The company undertook a supply chain network-redesign program, resulting in the commissioning of intermediate “merge centers” and optimization of cross-dock terminal locations.

Deere & Company also began consolidating shipments and using break-bulk terminals during the seasonal peak. The company also increased its use of third-party logistics providers and effectively created a network that could be optimized tactically at any given point in time.

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: Deere & Company’s supply chain cost-management achievements included an inventory decrease of $1 billion, a significant reduction in customer delivery lead times (from ten days to five or less) and annual transportation cost savings of around 5%.

Successful Supply Chain Cost Management Case Study - Intel

One of the world’s largest manufacturers of computer chips, Intel needs little introduction. However, the company needed to reduce supply chain expenditure significantly after bringing its low-cost “Atom” chip to market. Supply chain costs of around $5.50 per chip were bearable for units selling for $100, but the price of the new chip was a fraction of that, at about $20.

The Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenge: Somehow, Intel had to reduce the supply chain costs for the Atom chip, but had only one area of leverage—inventory.

The chip had to work, so Intel could make no service trade-offs. With each Atom product being a single component, there was also no way to reduce duty payments. Intel had already whittled packaging down to a minimum, and with a high value-to-weight ratio, the chips’ distribution costs could not be pared down any further.

The only option was to try to reduce levels of inventory, which, up to that point, had been kept very high to support a nine-week order cycle. The only way Intel could find to make supply chain cost reductions was to bring this cycle time down and therefore reduce inventory.

a case study on supply chain

The Path to Cost Reduction: Intel decided to try what was considered an unlikely supply chain strategy for the semiconductor industry: make to order . The company began with a pilot operation using a manufacturer in Malaysia. Through a process of iteration, they gradually sought out and eliminated supply chain inefficiencies to reduce order cycle time incrementally. Further improvement initiatives included:

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: Through its incremental approach to cycle time improvement, Intel eventually drove the order cycle time for the Atom chip down from nine weeks to just two. As a result, the company achieved a supply chain cost reduction of more than $4 per unit for the $20 Atom chip—a far more palatable rate than the original figure of $5.50.

3. Starbucks

Successful Supply Chain Cost Management Case Study - Starbucks

Like Intel, Starbucks is pretty much a household name, but like many of the most successful worldwide brands, the coffee-shop giant has been through its periods of supply chain pain. In fact, during 2007 and 2008, Starbucks leadership began to have severe doubts about the company’s ability to supply its 16,700 outlets. As in most commercial sectors at that time, sales were falling. At the same time, though, supply chain costs rose by more than $75 million.

Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenges: When the supply chain executive team began investigating the rising costs and supply chain performance issues, they found that service was indeed falling short of expectations. Findings included the following problems

The Path to Cost Reduction: Starbucks’ leadership had three main objectives in mind to achieve improved performance and supply chain cost reduction. These were to:

To meet these objectives, Starbucks divided all its supply chain functions into three main groups, known as “plan” “make” and “deliver”. It also opened a new production facility, bringing the total number of U.S. plants to four.

Next, the company set about terminating partnerships with all but its most effective 3PLs . It then began managing the remaining partners via a weekly scorecard system, aligned with renewed service level agreements.

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: By the time Starbucks had completed its transformation program, it had saved more than $500 million over the course of 2009 and 2010, of which a large proportion came out of the supply chain, according to Peter Gibbons, then Executive Vice President of Global Supply Chain Operations.

a case study on supply chain

Like Deere & Company, AGCO is a leading global force in the manufacture and supply of agricultural machinery. The company grew substantially over the course of two decades, achieving a considerable portion of that growth by way of acquisitions.

As commonly happens when enterprises grow in this way, AGCO experienced increasing degrees of supply chain complexity, along with associated increases in cost, but for many years, did little to address the issue directly, primarily due to the decentralized and fragmented nature of its global network.

In 2012, AGCO’s leaders recognised that this state of affairs could not continue and decided to establish a long-term program of strategic optimisation.

Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenges: With five separate brands under its umbrella, AGCO’s product portfolio is vast. At the point when optimisation planning began, sourcing and inbound logistics were managed by teams in various countries, each with different levels of SCM maturity, and using different tools and systems.

As a result of the decentralised environment, in which inbound logistics and transport management were separate operational fields, there was insufficient transparency in the supply chain. The enterprise as a whole was not taking advantage of synergies and economies of scale (and the benefits of the same). These issues existed against a backdrop of a volatile, seasonal market.

The Path to Cost Reduction: Following a SCOR supply chain benchmarking exercise, AGCO decided to approach its cost reduction and efficiency goals by blending new technology—in the form of a globally integrated transport management system (TMS)—with a commitment to form a partnership with a suitably capable 3PL provider.

As North and South American divisions of the company were already working with a recently implemented TMS, leaders decided to introduce the blended approach in Europe, with commitments to replicate the model, if successful, in its other operating regions.

With the technology and partnership in place, a logistics control tower was developed, which integrates and coordinates all daily inbound supply activities within Europe, from the negotiation of carrier freight rates, through inbound shipment scheduling and transport plan optimisation to self-billing for carrier payment.

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: Within a year and a half of their European logistics solution’s go-live, AGCO achieved freight cost reductions of some 18%, and has continued to save between three and five percent on freight expenditure, year-on-year, ever since. Having since rolled the new operating model out in China and North America, the company has reduced inbound logistics costs by 28%, increased network performance by 25% and cut inventory levels by a quarter.

a case study on supply chain

Headquartered in Westport Connecticut, Terex Corporation may not be such a well-known name, but if your company has ever rented an aerial working platform (a scissor-lift or similar), there is a good chance it was manufactured by Terex and dispatched to the rental company from its transfer center in North Bend, Washington.

The North Bend facility is always full of lifting equipment. The company makes most pieces to order and customizes them to meet customers’ unique preferences. Terex maintained a manual system for yard management at the transfer centre, which generated excessive costs for what should have been a relatively simple process of locating customers’ units to prepare them for delivery.

The Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenge: A wallboard and sticker system was a low-tech solution for identifying equipment items in the yard at Terex. While inexpensive in itself, the solution cost around six minutes every time an employee had to locate a unit in the yard. It also required a considerable number of hours to be spent each month taking physical inventories and updating the company’s ERP platform.

The Path to Cost Reduction: Terex decided to replace the outdated manual yard management process with a new, digital solution using RFID tracking. Terex decided to replace the outdated manual yard management process with a new, digital solution using RFID tracking. Decision-makers chose a yard management software (YMS) product, and then had the transfer centre surveyed before initiating a pilot project covering a small portion of the yard.

After a successful pilot, the company approved the solution for full-scale implementation, replacing stickers, yard maps, and wallboard with electronic tracking and digital inventory management. As of December 2017, Terex was planning to integrate the yard management solution with its ERP platform to enable even greater functionality.

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: While the YMS cannot reconcile inventory automatically with the Terex ERP application, it does at least provide a daily inventory count via its business intelligence module. That alone has saved the labour costs previously incurred in carrying out manual counts.

More importantly, though, the RFID-based unit identification and location processes have saved the company around 70 weeks per year in labour costs, by cutting the process-time down from six minutes, to a mere 30 seconds per unit.

Avaya is a global force in business collaboration and communications technology, and not so many years ago, was operating what, by its own executives’ admission, was a worst-in-class supply chain. That situation arose as the result of multiple corporate acquisitions over a short space of time. The company was suffering from a range of supply chain maladies, including a long cash-to-cash cycle, an imbalance in supplier terms and conditions, excess inventory, and supply chain processes that were inefficient and wholly manual.

The Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenge: After Avaya purchased Nortel Enterprise Solutions in 2009, the freshly merged company found itself but loosely in control of an unstable and ineffective supply chain operation. Aside from having too many disparate and redundant processes, the company had multiple IT solutions, none of which provided a holistic view of the supply chain or supported focused analysis.

The Path to Cost Reduction: Avaya’s senior management team realized that its technology solutions, which varied from being inadequate to inappropriate, were causing many of its problems. The various acquisitions and mergers had transformed Avaya into a different kind of enterprise, and what it needed, rather than a replacement for all the discrete systems, was one solution to tie them all together.

To that end, the company put its trust in cloud technology, which was relatively immature at the time, and migrated all processes onto one platform, which was designed to automate non-value-added activities and integrate those critical to proactive supply chain management, namely:

Of course, the technology was merely an enabler, and to transform its supply chain operation, Avaya embarked on a long-term, phased program to standardize processes, initiate a culture change, invest in top talent, and implement a system of rigorous benchmarking and KPI tracking .

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: Avaya’s program of transformation took place over a period of three to four years, between 2010 and 2014. The path to cost reduction was a long one, but ultimately successful.

By making a conscious effort to lead the enterprise into a new way of thinking, change business culture, and unify technology under a single platform, Avaya has improved inventory turns by more than 200%, reduced cash tied-up in stock by 94%, and cut its overall supply chain expenditure in half.

This dramatic turnaround also required the company to switch from a preoccupation with improving what it was doing, to a process of questioning what it was doing and why.

7. Sunsweet Growers

This final mini-case study in our collection, highlights how sometimes, excess supply chain costs are not about warehousing and transportation, but can be attributable to inefficiencies in manufacturing or production and—often at the root of it all—forecasting and planning.

Sunsweet Growers is the world’s biggest producer of dried fruits and a little over a decade ago, found that while it was managing distribution operations well, high production costs were inflating end-to-end supply chain expenditure.

The Supply Chain Cost Reduction Challenge: When the leadership at Sunsweet looked into the company’s production cost issues, recognition soon dawned that the distribution network was at least partly behind the problems. As a result, the company looked at how it could redesign the network to take out some of the production costs.

Later, it became apparent that although a redesign would yield some benefits, one of the most significant issues was in the approach to demand forecasting. Sunsweet was using a manual forecasting approach, with spreadsheets being the only technology involved.

The inefficiencies of this approach proved not only to hamper effective forecasting and production planning, but the knock-effect was an excess of warehouses in the network—so forecasting proved to be both a driver of production cost, and a key to improving the distribution network.

The Path to Cost Reduction: As in a number of the studies we’ve explored here, technology played a large part in solving Sunsweet’s problems. After evaluating some 30 different software solutions, the company finally settled on a supply chain planning suite, and planned its improvement program to make use of each of the solution’s modules in sequence, allowing ROI to be realized in phases as each module was implemented and leveraged.

At the same time, Sunsweet implemented a sales and operations planning program (S&OP) that once established, enabled plant resource requirements to be anticipated months—rather than weeks—in advance. As the overall improvement plan passed through its five phases, positive results accumulated and as hoped, software ROI reached 100% even before the company completed its full implementation.

Supply Chain Cost Management Results: Of course, the objective of Sunsweet’s improvement program was not merely to achieve a 100% return on investment in its supply chain planning platform. The aim was to reduce production costs, and although the company hasn’t published hard figures to quantify the total financial gain, it has claimed the following wins:

From the achievements documented above, and highlighted in several industry publications and articles, you don’t need to be too much of a mathematician to deduce that cost savings would have been considerable.

Making Supply Chain Cost Reductions Stick

Of course, the above case studies are merely summaries of the changes these high-profile brands made to their supply chains. What can be seen from these brief accounts, though, is that for an enterprise to make significant and sustainable cost improvements, substantial change must take place.

At the same time, none of the changes took place overnight. Each of the companies tackled issues in phases, effectively learning more as they went along.

You Won’t Find Savings in the Comfort Zone

When it comes to making supply chain cost reductions that stick, you should explore every avenue. However, at the root of high costs, there will usually be one major factor requiring innovation, whether it’s the network, inventory strategy, the working relationships with supply chain partners, or some other element of your operation.

Seldom do companies make decent savings by whittling away piecemeal at what seem, on the face of it, to be the most pressing issues of the day (such as direct transportation costs or supplier pricing).

If you want to see sustainable cost reductions, your company will need to view the big picture from a new angle or two, and be prepared to step outside of the comfort zone to which it will have become accustomed.

Editor’s Note: We originally published this post in June 2016 under the title “3 Mini Case Studies: Successful Supply Chain Cost Reduction and Management”. We have since expanded it to include four new case studies, so that there are now seven mini case studies in total.

Contact Rob O'Byrne


Norberto Pruskowski

As soon as I noticed this internet site I went on reddit to share some of the love with them.


What was the challenge facing supply chain cost reduction at Terex? What path did they take? 5 2. What challenges were faced by Starbucks? What path did they take?

Rob O'Byrne

Did you read the case studies? ?

Anggi Fergian

I have an assignment to search example of SCM and finally I faound it. Thank you for writing this case studies.

Jonalyn Torres

Hash Café is a coffee shop giant that has 120 branches all over Philippines and has been in the business for 25 years. For the past 2 years, it has encountered problems supplying its branches. Furthermore, The management of Hash Café decided to create a technical working group to investigate the rising costs and supply chain issues in order to know where the problem lies and to suggests ways and means to address it.

The following were the findings made by the technical working group:

a. Fewer than 50% of outlet deliveries were arriving on time

b. Several poor outsourcing decisions had led to excessive expenses

c. The supply chain had evolved and had unnecessarily become complex

After reading the case study, answer the following questions:

What do you think are the root causes of the major problems encountered by Hash Café? • Increased Cost the Supply Chain

What corrective actions should the management do to resolve each finding by the technical working group? • Reorganize the supply chain • Reduce cost to serve • Lay the groundwork for future capability in the supply chain

If you are one of the members of the technical working group what are your other suggestions to improve the supply chain management policies of Hash Café

Ernest Loi Abut

What is the answer?


excellent article. looking for more pl suggest ref for deep case studies. tks

Thanks, Asheesh! We have a wide range of case studies you can look at. Here’s the link:


Sir your articles are excellent. Let me have article on traceability in supply chain. regards:


How to reduce Shipping cost of machinery globally

Rob O'Byrne

I would look at:

Lead times required Order quantities and sizes Transport mode in use Review of available transport suppliers and rates

Jason Darnstaedt

Cost reduction and management are two important elements that help increase profits. Unfortunately, not every company gets it right. These case studies show how it’s possible to improve the situation.


Very helpful for my class on logistics


All small, mid and big size companies want to reduce shipping, supply chain cost but few of them succeed. I must say this article is more informative and your case studies really help to many.

Fakhuddin Sheik

This helped my students in Logistics Management course to better understand the application of SCM concepts. Thanks.

Glad it helped.

Luis Jervis

Is there any reference you used?

No, just web research.

Anas Khan

A well briefed article for the innovations required in SCM, especially in third world countries. Just now I had completed my reading material of CSCP – Module 1, and I must say it helped me in knowing the real picture of applying these strategies. Thank you for being able to highlight, would remain eager for more.

Glad you enjoy the material. Don’t forget we have a really good online education program at a crazy low price!

Daniel W

This is a very thoughtful, insightful analysis.


Why the selection of the right suppliers is important to Starbucks?

Because too many deliveries were late. (they might run out of stock) So they used new 3PLs with a careful performance measurement system.

Gabriel Okonta

Very insightful analysis.

Can get you please help me with references you used for this write up.

I need to do further research in some of this subject area

I’ll see what I can find, though it’s quite an old article.

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Supply Chain Management: Case studies

Why case studies?

Case studies from harvard, scholarly journal articles, other journals as sources for case studies.

Case studies can provide:

Please note that this is not a guarantee!  But case studies sometimes do provide all of the above ...

Harvard Business School Press vs. Harvard Business Review

We do NOT subscribe to the Harvard Business School Press case studies.  (That would be really expensive ...)  However, please be aware that these case studies are actually quite cheap to buy individually; they go for about $7 each when you buy them directly from Harvard.  Below is a link to their site.

That said, there are some case studies within the journal Harvard Business Review (HBR).  These are not the Harvard Business School case studies (the ones used in the Harvard Business School classes); these tend to be shorter, less detailed and less in-depth, and are usually about fictitious companies.  Also below is a link to the full-text of the HBR.

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Case studies: Digital transformation in supply chain

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Adam Mussomeli

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Adam Mussomeli is a New York–based Principal at Deloitte, with more than 25 years of experience delivering global, highly complex supply chain transformations across industries, both in a consulting e... More

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At the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics

Case Studies in Logistics and Supply Chain Management

Term Spring 2021 Subject SCM.261J Instructor(s) J. Byrnes Units 3-0-6 Date/Time (Lec) Mon, Wed 9:30-11 (Virtual)

RMIT University

Library subject guides

Logistics and supply chain management.

Where to find case studies

Case studies generally describe real world practical examples from which others can gain insight for their own application.  They can provide both positive examples and well as raise issues and challenges for others to be aware of.  

To locate case studies in LibrarySearch , enter the search terms "case studies" or "case study*" and the keywords describing your topic. 

Case studies can be located within the RMIT databases and across various subject areas. 

Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies (EEMCS) 

Cases are written by case writers working in, or closely with, developing economies. They offer local perspectives with global appeal. The collection receives regular content updates throughout the year and all cases benefit from a supportive peer-review process to ensure the highest quality content.

Datamonitor Case Study Series

Short (10-page) company case studies examining the reasoning behind the success of specific companies.

MarketLine Case Studies 

Concise evaluations of the latest innovative company strategies to help you quickly and easily understand exactly what makes them successful.  From social media initiatives to unusual store formats and online retailing, Case Studies present examples of best practice across a wide variety of industries and geographies, bringing innovation into full focus.

ProQuest Case Studies 

EbscoHost Case Studies

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Supply chain management free case studies.

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Share these free Supply Chain Management case studies with your class 

Engage your students with real-world case studies that provide insights into supply chain practices, challenges, and opportunities. Share each case study with your students by simply copying and pasting the activity page URL into your learning management system (LMS).

Case 1: Rising Health Care Costs And The Role Of Outsourcing And Offshoring In The U.S. Health Care Sector

In this case study, your students will identify factors that are driving the health care costs higher in the United States than in peer countries. They will also discuss advantages and disadvantages of emerging trends in supply chain management such as adopting outsourcing in health care. After reading the case, they are encouraged to create an argument in favor of or against the view that health care offshoring is a threat to the U.S. health care industry.  See case study . 

In this case study, your students will identify factors that are affecting demand management in the fast food industry and evaluate the reinvention strategy that McDonald’s has used to keep their fingers firmly on the pulse of their international customer base. Students will also be asked to advice McDonald’s with regards to future trends and the changes it should consider. After reading the case, they are encouraged to research areas in which the company plans to reinvent itself in the coming years, particularly in light of the appointment of its new CEO and the COVID-19 pandemic. See case study

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  14. Supply Chain Management Free Case Studies

    Engage your students with real-world case studies that provide insights into supply chain practices, challenges, and opportunities. Share each case study