In week 2 you looked at the business operations of companies described in Ch. 14. For your final project, please select one of those companies, or another if you prefer and review their supply chain risk management practices. You may look at companies who are members of the Supply Chain Risk Leadership Council.

You may consider your own organization as well or another. You should be able to conduct online research, especially of publicly traded companies which must provide SCRM information in their Shareholder 10K reports which are available from publicly traded companies. You may also use primary research by interviewing executives at an organization. Please answer these questions about your chosen company:

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Identify at least two supply chain risks faced by the organization
Identify examples, if any, of supply chain disruptions experienced by the organization or expected to experience. These disruptions can encompass natural disasters, cyber hacking, supplier failures and more.
Identify the role of business continuity planning, if any, for the organization
Consider the industry in which your chosen organization is found.Evaluate supply chain risks overall in that industry and industry disruptions.
Offer your own perspectives on future disruptions that may disrupt your chosen company’s supply chain.
The paper is to have a minimum of 1000 words and utilize APUS formatting including cover page, abstract and summary.








Supply Chain Risks




Supply chain risks occur during different stages of the supply chain thus causing supply chain disruptions. The paper focused on IBM within the Tech industry while assessing the supply chain risks. IBM has clearly illustrated some of the supply chain risks within the tech industry. The paper also covered supply chain disruptions at IBM and the role of business continuity planning. Some of the supply chain risks that the supply chain managers should worry about include demand risks, cybersecurity risks, economic risks, globalization risks, and government regulations.

Demand Risks

Customer intimacy has been one of the biggest supply chain risks at IBM. Customer intimacy entails the rising change in consumer demand ranks. Demand risks have led to misunderstood and unpredictable customer demands. Changes in consumer demands have made it difficult for IBM to address demand volatility concerns. Increasing affluence and mass urbanization have offered consumers more economic power. This has led to a demand for new products and services to meet their demands since the consumers have easy access to huge information about retailers and new technologies (Nash, 2016). The demand risks have stemmed from fluctuations in external consumer requirements and management of internal customer requirements. In most cases, it has been challenging for the company to understand the overall demand elasticity.

Security Risks

IBM supply chain is very complex which has led to the issues of security risks within the supply chain. Considerably, supply chain vulnerability and security issues reflect the sensitivity of the supply chain to high disruption. For instance, the complexity of the IBM supply chain results in a hard, complicated, and costly threat due to security issues. The supply chain leaders at IBM have paid much attention to cyber threats which have been on the rise in the supply chain (Nash, 2016).

Security teams within the company are overwhelmed with the increased volumes of cyberattacks. Considerably, supply chain security risk is a multi-disciplinary issue that requires customer support and close collaboration with IT experts. The supply chain is all about ensuring the consumers get what they want, at the right time and place. Cyberattacks have led to risks and disruptions to the integrity of the services and products, the data being exchanged as well as the delivery of associated transactions.

Cybersecurity and Production disruptions

Cybersecurity disruptions are very common at IB due to high cyber threats. Security-related disruptions have been common in IBM. They can halt or disrupt the supply chain operation since the company manages its data through the cloud service.  As the cloud services at IBM increase, the worries of cybersecurity have been on the rise. Ideally, data in the cloud is highly exposed to cyberattacks leading to disruptions in the cloud systems.

Ransomware and phishing are among the cyberattacks that have caused disruptions at IB cloud system services. Cybersecurity incidents localized to third-party suppliers have led to a significant disruption to the plan, development, and delivery process. Additionally, the privacy of data being exchanged between the clients and the company has resulted in integrity disruptions. Cybersecurity attacks in the cloud services have remained a big disruption in the service delivery efficiencies.

Unexpected industry changes are likely to disrupt the company supply chain operations due to changes in supply and demand. Therefore, industry growth and changes are likely to disrupt production at IBM. Since the industrial revolution, many tech companies have risen creating a negative impact on the tech industry. The growth of tech companies has posed a future challenge in supply and demand. This is because an increase in the tech companies has led to more products in the industry as well as uncertainty in the supply of raw materials.

The Role of Business Continuity Planning

Business continuity planning is a proactive plan to mitigate and avoid risks associated with disruption of operations. This entails steps that are considered before, during, and after a threat. Businesses rely on the business continuing planning to create a system of recovery and prevention from potential threats (Azadegan et al., 2020). IBM has a continuity planning which includes a document that outlines how it will continue operating during the unplanned service disruption. The main role of business continuity planning at IBM is to handle IT disruptions, servers, networks, mobile devices, and personal computers. Business continuity planning has safeguarded the ability of IBM operations to keep running even during the disruptions.

Supply chain risks in the Tech Industry

The tech industry involves high-tech companies that supply consumer devices such as tablets, computers, tablets, and hardware like servers, routers, and switches which are central to the economic power of the companies. The high-tech companies are reliant on metals, materials, and other commodities that have affected the raw material costs and availability leading to raw material supply risks. Outsourcing risks have also influenced the supply chain operations concerning high tech parts delay (Sreedevi and Saranga, 2017). For instance, technology hardware whether servers, smartphones, and TVs have a host of problems such as unrealistic timelines, quality suffers, and integration difficulties.

Sabotage is another biggest supply chain risk in tech companies. These include the installation of counterfeit software and hardware as well as the installation of malicious service providers. Tech companies’ supply chain risks develop from any phase of product life cycle design. As tech companies are penetrating new markets and becoming intertwined with high reliance on the IoT connecting, the malicious threats and cybersecurity breaches. Injection of viruses in high-tech hardware products during manufacture, supply procurement, and customer delivery has increased the cyber threats in tech companies.

Future Disruptions that may Disrupt IBM

The growth of the tech industry might be a major disruption for the main players such as IBM. This is due to an increased supply of products and services which may also affect the supply of raw materials. Structural changes and economic uncertainty due to global war trade and strict environmental regulations. Global trade wars have led to the development of new import tariffs on a wide range of consumer products (Manners-Bell, 2017). Trade wars will impact the availability of various raw materials resulting in widespread disruption and operational problems. Therefore, external risks might lead to future supply chain disruptions from government restrictions and regulations. Technology disruption is likely to influence the high tech industry due to the demand to keep up with customer technology use. For instance, the internet of this is arguably one of the disruptive technology in the supply chain changing the digital supply network.




Azadegan, A., Mellat Parast, M., Lucianetti, L., Nishant, R., & Blackhurst, J. (2020). Supply chain disruptions and business continuity: An empirical assessment. Decision Sciences51(1), 38-73.

Manners-Bell, J. (2017). Supply chain risk management: understanding emerging threats to global supply chains. Kogan Page Publishers.

Nash, K. S. (2016). IBM pushes blockchain into the supply chain. Wall Street Journal.

Sreedevi, R., & Saranga, H. (2017). Uncertainty and supply chain risk: The moderating role of supply chain flexibility in risk mitigation. International Journal of Production Economics193, 332-342.

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