Agents and Distributors (4)

For at least two decades, the supply chain management literature has argued that integrated, collaborative supplier-manufacturer relationships generate efficiency and quality advantages that are not possible through a purely transactions-based, buyer-seller dynamic. If such consensus is well-founded, supply chain managers should strive to build collaborative, relationship-based supply networks and fundamentally underpin these with a positive, non-opportunistic approach to supplier management. Any agent, broker, distributor, third party logistics provider, supplier, or other nodal or non-nodal supply chain actor is likely to perform better (more conscientiously and cost effectively) if she or he is motivated and managed considerately. The aggregate effect of all supply chain actors performing their roles efficiently is one of profound general improvement.

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