Executive summary

The article discusses the importance of the supply chain in the success of companies. It shows how different societies employ different supply chains in their activities to achieve success. The essay focuses the supply chain of Apple Company and Fly Emirates airline. It discusses the different aspect of the two company supply chain, their advantages and the problems that are encountered. The article compares the two system and shows why each is so useful in their industry. The essay then discusses the issue that has developed over time in the supply. Factors relating to technology, environmental factors, and ethics. We look at how each of the two companies has tackled this issue. It then draws a conclusion on the supply chain of both companies.
There are a lot of processes involved in the productions of a good to its final consumption. This can be termed as the supply chain. The supply chain a long channel with a company collaborating and coordinating with different players in the industry. The supply chain begins with the suppliers who provide the raw materials, then storage, processing of raw materials, marketing and sale of the goods. The chain ends with the consumer. All the processes involving conversion, sourcing, procurement, and logistics activities. Every firm has developed their supply chain that provides them with the most efficiency. Companies choose their supply chain depending on the goods or service that they trade. Some products have a long supply chain with many people involved in the chain. On the other hand, service has a shorter supply chain, and fewer people are involved. The supply chain chosen by a firm depends on various factors such as the type of product and technology available. Apple Company boasts one of the best supply chains in the world. The firm is globally dealing with both hardware and software. The company has developed its supply chain to suit its needs and its market. The Fly Emirates is the fastest growing Airline Company. Emirates have developed a unique supply chain that is efficient and provides them with a competitive advantage over their competitors. Both Apple Company and fly Emirates have used their supply chain to compete favorably in their industry. By adopting their supply to their needs, they have become successful.
Apple Company supplies Chain
Telecommunication is one of the most competitive industries in the world. It also one of the most profitable business in the world. Apple is responsible for products such as IPhone, IPad and Mac computers. It also supplies software for its products. A lot of processes is involved in the production and supply of this items. The company has an elaborate supply chain that requires close monitoring for it to work. Most of their enterprises are situated in Asia where labor is cheaper. The company relocated their businesses to China and other Asian countries to reduce their cost of production. The company ensures that the raw materials are available for the company to manufacture their phones and other electronic devices (Fawcett, et al., 2007). Once the devices are developed, the goods are transported all over the world where they are sold. Key people in the supply chain include the suppliers, the employees, the investors, the management, and the clients. A problem in the supply chain would heavily affect the business. If the vendor does not provide the raw, then there would be an issue in production. The employees play a significant role in ensuring that research is done, goods processed, and sold. The investors provide the funds for expansion and management of the business. The managers act as the supply chain management and ensure that the supply chain is working efficiently. The clients are the final piece of the supply chain and determine if the supply chain is successful.
An aspect that makes Apple Company supply unique is the interconnection between the software and hardware used in the products. The company designs specialized software for each device so as to make them unique in the market. A lot of research is done to ensure that the lasts technology is available for the devices and that the devices can utilize the technology. There is a close coordination between those researching and those creating software and hardware. Typically the supply chain begins with the collection of data from consumers. This will include opinions, critics and complain. The firm sorts the information and discovers the areas that they need to improve to make their products better. The corporation then applies this knowledge to innovation and invention which leads to the creation of improved appliances (Hugos, 2011). It is critical for the product to keep improving as new technology develops. As the software team develops a new application, they communicate with the hardware team to design specifics that would enable the new device to be able to contain the new software. The hardware team designs the final package that is to the liking of the consumers. Once the final product and design are developed and tested it is sent for mass production. As production is carried out there is a mass advertisement for the new product and the features that are involved. The clients know what to expect from the new product. Application developers start developing applications that the device can operate. Once the phone or computer is on the market, the product is complete, and buyers get what they wanted.
The Apple supply chain is designed for consumer satisfaction as a lot of emphases is placed on what the customers want. The process involves finding the perfect good for the market. From the research to always adopting new technology the company seeks to be a market leader in the telecommunication industry (Lu, 2014). By being a market leader they can determine the kind of application design, the prices of products and this puts the company at an advantage. Due to the aggressive manner that the firm develops its products, it can stay ahead of other businesses. The companies ensure that everyone in the supply chain is satisfied, and there is proper coordination between the different sectors of the enterprise.
Apple supply chain is over-reliant on each process. If there is a breakdown in any process, then the whole supply chain would be affected. If there is a delay in designing or production, then everything else is affected. The supply chain is dependent on how the clients receive their product. If the customers are not satisfied with the end product, then the supply chain is viewed as unsuccessful.
The Fly Emirates Supply Chain
The Fly Emirates conducts flights in over 100 countries in all the continents. The company has grown very fast due to proper planning and understanding the market. Even though the airline is new when compared to other airlines it has surpassed so many other older airlines. The service supply chain is very short with the client benefiting from the service directly. In most times the service provider has an immediate impact on the service provided. The main players in the aviation industry are the airlines, the airports in different countries and the clients (McGinley, 2010). As seen the shuttle connects the other two industry players. Emirates has been able to gain popularity by offering better services. The airline has over500 airplanes than ply different routes. It has made it possible for its clients to visits as many places as possible without them having to endure any difficulty. Employing qualified pilots, air hostesses, and attendants have provided a good customer relationship, and this has improved its image.
Clients can relate to the good service of the airline, and this promotes loyalty to the flight. It has many routes and most appropriate when traveling to different countries. The airline developed a hub system with Dubai International airport, and this allowed the airline to be more flexible in its routes. The hub and spoke system in critical in service delivery and distinguishing the firm from other airlines. The system confronts one key problem of airport congestion and lack of space. There are many airlines, and the number of planes is increasing. Through adopting the hub and spoke system all the services and flights of the airlines are linked. This makes it easy to supervise and coordinate the airplanes. The hub and spoke system is critical in the supply chain in the manner that it works. The airline has a hub at Dubai International Airport. This acts as a base for the airline and all airplanes belonging to the airline passing through the centre. It acts as a resting point for the airline. The supply chain management can monitor the flight pattern and services the plane easily. By using the hub system, the airline has centralized their service to one single airport. It is easier to make decisions when everything is done at one single place more rather than in different airports.
Dubai airport is already one of the busiest airports in the world processing over five million passengers monthly, and when the new Al Maktoum International airport is finished in 2018, it will have the ability to process over 160 million passengers in a year. Dubai is the busiest city regarding commerce and trade as business ventures are shifting towards the East. As a result, the number of passengers traveling through the country is increasing. The airline is at the center of all these activities and through improving its hub to provide better service it is attracting more clients. Their services have also improved closing monitoring the reaction of the customers. The hub system is import in the fact that it not only allows consumers to be closer to the service provider but also allows the airline to grow. The airline is able to create more routes by connecting to new destination (Emirates Airlines, 2015). The system also simplifies the routes eliminating the need for planes to stop at different airports before going towards their destination. As a result it cuts the cost of operation which is extended to the clients who enjoy a lower ticket price.

Even though the Fly Emirates is crucial to their success, it faces a few problems. They may experience a flight congestion in case many airplanes are at the same airport. They have been able to eliminate this through using tight traveling schedules for the airplanes and building the bigger Al Maktoum International airport which can service most of their planes. Another problem the face is disruption of their activities as a result of any disturbances in the hub. In case of security concerns or bad weather then the whole service would be brought to a halt. As the entire supply system depends on the hub the whole system would be shut down, and clients will not only be inconvenienced, but the company would experience a significant loss.

The comparison between Apple and Emirates Supply Chain

The success in the service industries such as airline is determined majorly by the number of clients. When the number is high, then the airline is more successful. By adopting a hub system to supply their service the airline can increase the number of the airplane in their fleet, it can increase the number or routes and destinations that their airplanes ply and thus enhance their number of clients. The supply chain adopted allows Emirates to offer better service at a lower fee which is advantageous to them. Apple, on the other hand, uses a more traditional supply chain for its services. There are different sectors that have their roles cut out (Rehman, 2007). Each department plays a critical role in the end product. Failure of one sector delivering can cause the whole system to be unsuccessful. In the system, a lot of close emphases is placed on software and hardware management to ensure that the final product is what the clients demand. Both supply chains are dependent on the loyalty of customers and creation of new clients. They work towards providing the best for the consumers so that they can maintain a similar demand for the product. As a result, the supply chain must be closely monitored to ensure success. Decision is not only based on the clients but the mode of delivery. The clients are the last in the clients but the most important ones. The system is designed to ensure that clients are satisfied. Emirates service encompasses a lot of activities and focuses on saving cost and being able to reach more clients as possible.

Factors affecting Supply Chains

There are many new things that affect the supply chain of both Apple Company and Emirates Airline. The key to this is technology, ethical and environmental factors. The application of technology in the supply chain has served to improve the nature of the supply chain. From the mode of payment to supervision, technology plays a significant role in the supply chain. Technology helps in bridging the gap between the suppliers, the company, and the consumers. Apple uses technology to monitor its inventory with suppliers and ensures that they are not shortchanged (University Alliance, 2016). Emirates are known to employ technology in its operations to improve its service provision. Clients can buy and monitor their flight online, and this has assisted them in efficiency. From the hub, they can monitor all their flights globally and coordinate them and prevent congestion in their hub. Technology assists the supply chain to work better. Another issue has been ethical issues in the supply chain. This mainly affects how people in the supply chain are treated. Apple had an issue when it emerged that the workers in their factories in Asia were being mistreated. This resulted in bad publicity for the company. As a result of this, the companies stalks suffered as consumers were rejecting the products due to unethical issues. Companies are usually required to address ethical issues quickly to avoid bad publicity which would damage the company. Ethical issues may arise in the manner that suppliers, employees, and clients are treated. Discrimination of any form is a moral and may affect the company. Emirates has managed to adhere to ethical standards and have not faced a major case on ethical issues. The last aspect is environmental factors. The amount of pollution done on the environment is critical in the supply chain. Companies are only allowed to emit a certain amount of gasses in their operation. Apple has reduced its emissions by over 10 % in the last three years. Emirates have developed a program in collaboration with the Dubai government that assists them in reducing their emissions to the world standards.


Every company develops a supply chain that works best for their company. When the supply chain is effective, it gives an edge to the company. The supply chain for service industries and good industries are different in many aspects. Apple Company and Emirates each has a unique supply system that has made them be leading firms in their industry. Apple Company system is complicated with very many departments involved. They have to ensure that each sector coordinates for the end product to be what is required. Emirates have a more centralized system as they have adopted the hub system of operation. They can monitor their services through a single point. This has enabled them reach more people and improve their services. Even though the two supply chains are different, they both aim to serve the clients in the best way possible. Issues concerning the environment, ethical issues and the use of technology are being incorporated into the supply chain to give companies an edge over their competitors. Even though Apple and Emirates operate different aspects of businesses, they have been able to stay ahead in their respective industries due to their unique supply chain.

Works Cited

University Alliance, 2016. Apple’s SCM make it a Global Supply Chain Leader, San Francisco: University of San Francisco.

Emirates Airlines, 2015. Fly Emirates Annual Report, Dubai: s.n.

Fawcett, S., Ogden, J. & Ellram, L., 2007. Supply chain management : from vision to implementation. [Online]
Available at: http://encore.deakin.edu.au/iii/encore/record/C__Rb2227070

Hugos, M. H., 2011. Essentials of Supply Chain Management. Boston: John Wiley & Sons.

Lu, C., 2014. Apple had the best supply chain in the world for the last four years – here is what you can learn from it. Trade Gecko, 3 April.

McGinley, S., 2010. INTERVIEW: Maurice Flanagan, Emirates Airline. Arabian Supply Chain.com, 27 July.

Rehman, A., 2007. Dubai & Co.: Global Strategies for Doing Business in the Gulf States. Dubai: Mcgraw-hill.

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