Contact FutureLearn for Support
Skip main navigation
We use cookies to give you a better experience, if that’s ok you can close this message and carry on browsing. For more info read our cookies policy.
We use cookies to give you a better experience. Carry on browsing if you're happy with this, or read our cookies policy for more information.

Skip to 0 minutes and 8 secondsHi and welcome to Week 2, which is about the global orchestra. A rather strange sounding title which is aimed to help you start to think about the role of the conductor of the orchestra, who brings all the different parts together. And really, in supply chains, it's the role of the planning function to act like that glue, or the orchestrator, and coordinate all the different parts of the supply chain from around the world. We'll begin by looking at planning fundamentals. The planning process, the planning hierarchy, time horizons and the ways that we balance demand and supply. We'll then move on to look at planning in action and how it supports different types of supply chains.

Skip to 0 minutes and 51 secondsWe'll look at this in a fast moving consumer good context, humanitarian logistics, seasonal supply chains and even in construction. Finally, we'll start to think about the role of planning and personality, how our individual personality traits affect the way that we plan. We'll look at concepts such as myopic loss aversion, and you'll even have a chance to do a small experiment. I hope that you enjoy this week and not only take away some individual insights about your own personality and how that affects the way that you plan, but also you find out more about this global orchestra, and how planning helps to coordinate supply chains around the globe.

Welcome to Week 2

Although my passion was initially for manufacturing very quickly after starting work I realised that what we actually made had to be scheduled or planned. There were various different types of planning, that looked at how best to balance demand and supply over different time horizons.

I hope that you enjoy this week and the insight it provides into the world of planning.

How does this block fit into the overall course?

During this week we are going to explore the largely invisible but arguably one of the most important aspects of the supply chain – planning. It is the ‘glue’ that holds the supply chain together or as the title of this week suggests the ‘orchestrator’. Indeed, given global nature of the supply chain, a ‘global orchestrator’.

What will learners be able to do differently at the end this week?

At the end of this week I hope that you are able to begin to think about planning in a different way; to begin to understand the way in which planning seeks to balance supply and demand for different types of products and services. Also to provide some insights into your personal planning orientation and the impact it has on supply chains.

How is the week structured?

The topics for this week are structured into 3 blocks. We begin by looking at planning fundamentals. The planning process, the importance and different ways to balance demand and supply to enable flexibility and the way in which personality impacts planning. We move on to explore how this works in practice and the supply chain responses for different types of events. We then look to the future, and the challenges and opportunities for supply chains in a data driven age. The week ends with an opportunity to reflect on what you have learnt this week and a check your understanding quiz.

How would I like learners to engage?

As always, please do engage in the discussions and don’t feel afraid to share your views. Planning is a largely invisible process and I am very interested to see your perceptions of planning at the start of this week, and how similar or different they are at the end.

Share this video:

This video is from the free online course:

Supply Chains in Practice: How Things Get to You

The University of Warwick