Republic Electric is faced with the need to engage in a systematic process of evaluating vendors for its just-in-time manufacturing. The case gives students the opportunity to think through the process for vendor selection in the context of real-world constraints for a specific organization, to become acquainted with the Delphi technique for developing consensus, to gain hands-on experience with linear averaging, to engage in calculations of value indexes, and to recognize the marketing implications of effectively evaluating vendors. A key takeaway for students is the fact that vendor selection decisions are multifaceted and will vary among organizations depending on each organization’s particular strategic needs, operational constraints, and human judgment.
The case is based upon a consulting assignment with the company that is represented by Republic Electric. The experience was gained first-hand by one of the authors.
Relevant courses and levels
This case is targeted at undergraduate students in marketing, materials management, supply chain management, and purchasing, but can work well in a variety of business courses in which supply chains or the development of evaluation tools is studied, to include graduate classes.
The concept of vendor assessment is well developed in the literature and represents a pragmatic, but often neglected, step in the practice of choosing suppliers.
The names of the institutions and individuals involved have been disguised, however the material facts of the case are authentic.
Disclaimer. This case is written solely for educational purposes and is not intended to represent successful or unsuccessful managerial decision making. The author/s may have disguised names; financial, and other recognizable information to protect confidentiality.
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