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Transportation is a significant component of the costs incurred by any supply chain and the choice of
transportation often has a large impact on supply chain responsiveness and efficiency. Consequently, there is
always a trade-off between efficiency and responsiveness.
Social distancing measures implemented to combat covid-19 have seen the business of e-commerce and
online shopping proliferating and an escalation in the transportation of small shipments. Companies such as
Dell and Amazon primarily transport small packages or orders out to customers. Amazon, for example,
would have seen an increase in orders from their fresh food store. Similarly, SBT is a global exporter of
Japanese used cars. Many car dealers in the Caribbean are increasingly purchasing cars from this company
due to their ability to save on cost.
Both Amazon and SBT would be providing their services efficiently while meeting the expectations of their
customers. Amazon who may want to reduce facility/location cost may have an increased concentration and
2022/2023- Semester 1
Supply Chain Management
a small number of distribution centres. However, they still need to meet the responsiveness expectations of
customers, especially where perishable foods are concerned. SBT, on the other hand, is located in Japan but
customers are more flexible with responsiveness.
Wal-Mart also aim for cost containment within its supply chain. Its network is designed so that a distribution
centre supports several large retail stores that assist with replenishment and responsiveness.
Therefore, the success of these companies is closely linked to the use of appropriate transportation in its
supply chain.
In groups of TWO (2) analyze the case and provide a presentation on the following statement:
A. Discuss the significance of the trade-off between efficiency and responsiveness. (4 marks)
B. Identify and discuss the most appropriate transportation that will be used by Amazon and
SBT in terms of their response strategy to customers. (10 Marks)
C. Identify the mode of transportation that Walmart uses and with the aid of a diagram explain
how Walmart reduce transportation costs while replenishing inventories frequently

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