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In this discussion thread, you will discuss three separate points about the Walt Disney Case.

The Walt Disney Company has theme parks, movies, and retails stores selling thousands of different items. SCM plays a massive role in Disney’s success in delivering services and products to its customers. Consider the raw materials that they use to build the theme parks and the perishable raw materials that they supply from farmers to prepare food and serve visitors. Taking thousands of different items sold in their retail stores into account, the Walt Disney Company must have an effectively managed supply chain system comprised of many entities, including raw material suppliers and manufacturers.

  1. Elaborate on various sustainability practices that the Walt Disney Company utilizes/should utilize to ensure responsible and ethical supply chain management. For example, consider Disney’s sourcing strategies, supplier selection strategies, and labor practices in your discussion. 
  2. Define what e-procurement is and elaborate on its advantages and disadvantages from Disney’s perspective
  3. Define major supply chain risk types from the Disney point of view (e.g., consider the disasters, pandemics, and how they pose risks to Disney’s supply chain). Then, elaborate on supply chain risk mitigation strategies that Disney can use.

Classmates replies:

1. Disney utilizes many different ways of maintaining their supply chain and developing strategies overtime to see what is needed for improvement. For example, Disney parks actors and staff are accounted for enough so that there are just enough costumes and uniforms needed so that no extra ones are purchased. Disney also keeps track of its inventory and demand on what products and services are more popular than others to make sure nothing is over bought or under sold. Having inventory on hand that is not sold or can expire leads to a loss of revenue. Disney also makes sure that they practice commitment toward all cast members with fairness and respect making sure that they do not discriminate.  

E-procurement is where the organization uses the internet to procure the goods and services that are needed for the business. Disney has multiple venders that it reaches out to make sure enough product is keep in stock and is made for the various supply and demand. Overtime supply and demand can vary along the supply chain which can dictate how much product is needed. Disney keeps track of its inventory and the advantage of E-procurement helps Disney make purchases to resupply stores or manufacturers as fast as possible including any order changes that are required to be made. Additional advantages are increased data comprehension, cost effectiveness, and more clear spending. The disadvantages of this could leave Disney in a rough place when suppliers have onboarding problems, time consuming approval chains, including that this is not the best place to obtain direct materials. There are also integration challenges that can lead to a lack of planning and a shift in operations with the digital culture.

Supply chain risk is a major issue for all companies as the world is always changing on an economic, environmental, political, and ethical standpoint. During these shifts in these types of supply chain risks this can dictate whether a business has a strong stand on its operations and ability to adapt overtime. During the Covid-19 pandemic Disney parks took a major turn economically many people lost their jobs and were forced to go on unemployment, including the environmental wise many park goers were afraid to be around people for an extended time. Many amusement parks were closed around the world and states which lead to a loss in revenue. Disney was able to overcome these challenges but focusing its efforts on its retailers, and television departments which still allowed people to experience Disney at home with Disney Games, and Disney +. Once parks were back open Disney and many other businesses were suffering with supply issues as many manufacturers are based out of China or overseas which caused supply delays when on boarding with other supply chains. In order for Disney to avoid a major disruption in supply chain delays the company can plan for risk, establish diverse suppliers, and also analyze risk exposure. The act of being overly prepared will allow Disney to be prepared not to fail in the future.

2. 1. The Walt Disney Company utilizes many sustainability practices to ensure responsible and ethical supply chain management. When you have multiple parks around the world, it’s important that you master the art of sustainability. Each one of the Disney parks around the world all play their own part in achieving the highest level of sustainability while still giving their customers the greatest quality of experience. One huge way that Disney has effectively done this is by protecting our oceans. Not only in 2021 did Disney implement programs set to protect natural water systems, but just recently in 2022 they launched a global campaign called “Keep Our Oceans Amazing”. This campaign fights to raise awareness of the challenges facing oceans and marine life and works to protect 10 of our oceans’ sea life and their homes (Grasser, Shelby. “’Keep Our Oceans Amazing’ Campaign Launches in Celebration of ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’.” Disney Parks Blog, This supports ethical supply chain management as well because these campaigns are protecting wildlife and their habitats. Disney also tries to significantly limit their amount of waste while also using low impact products such as recycled goods.

2. E-procurement is when you buy and sell supplies online instead of in person. In general, some advantages of e-procurement are how it saves time, creates less room for error, more room for efficiency, and has a more secure system. Some disadvantages of e-procurement are the cost of operating, non guaranteed quality, potential of fraud, delivery/market risks, and how it’s not as user friendly. But specifically to Disney, an advantage may be that when you master a manufacturing network, it comes with a highly complex network of suppliers. This opens the door to more products, materials, and services which can be imported from around the world. On the flip side, a con may be brand confusion and adjustment because Disney did not start out using e-procurement. This may draw in more threats and will cost them more money.

3. Being a big company comes with having major supply chain risks. From Disney’s point of view, some of these may include ambiguity and uncertainty. The disasters we’ve had in the last couple of years, pandemics, etc can all pose risks to Disney’s supply chain. The pandemic in specific heavily impacted supply chains all over the world. It caused port delays, transportation shortages such as airplanes, pauses and stops completely of production, and so many more negatives. All of these cause uncertainty, and Disney was definitely made to feel this way during that time. Unfortunately, world events as such cannot be predicted so all businesses can do is prepare for them. Thankfully, there are supply chain risk mitigation strategies that companies can use. Disney now requires that all independent licensees and vendors working in the company sign a contract agreeing to comply with their regulatory requirements. Incorporating contracts gives Disney a sense of safety and security. Identifying and evaluating is the best way to mitigate supply chain risks. As long as Disney evaluates situations, they can prepare themselves for future issues that may arise within their supply chain (“Supply Chain.” Disney Social Responsibility, 23 Jan. 2023, In addition, they also have something called Disney’s Supply Chain Investment Program (SCIP) which funds multiple programs that support important issues within the industry. Another strategy that Disney could use would be to make learning new skills a priority. Never be close minded to a new tactic just because you feel like yours is working fine. There is always room for improvement and no one is ever ‘too ready’ for the unknown.

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