This short case is designed to reinforce the students’ understanding of the constraints on demand planning, and the choices available to supply chain operations managers that may affect their overall planning effectiveness. Zara is a well know example of a company that chooses extra capacity, close supply relationships, and fast lead times over a more traditional strategy based on anticipation and pre-positioned inventories. The questions below provide a frame for discussing the trade-offs of this approach.
1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of Zara's methods?
2. Would these methods work at a company like C&F?
3. What advice would you give to Bill Smith?