Total Quality Management is a very essential function of Supply Chain Management. There are eight principles of TQM i.e. customer focus, leadership, engagement of the people, process control, system management, recurrent development, real approach to decision making and reciprocally valuable supplier relation (Selnes, 19-35). These eight principles present the success witnessed in the developed economies. Today, in the current highly competitive world, firms cannot meet the customers’ demand quick enough using the traditional operational techniques (Baroto, 120). For this reason, high number of firms have embraced the supply chain management technique to acquire competitive advantage within its industry.

You're lucky! Use promo "samples20"
and get a custom paper on
"Supply Chain Management: Total Quality Management"
with 20% discount!
Order Now

Some of the highly successful organization have relied highly on its suppliers. The quality of product manufactured by a supplier has a major impact on the quality of final product of principal enterprise (Selnes, 19-35). For this reason, the TQM has shifted from enterprise approach into supply chain approach. The control of the entire supply chain and maintaining quality play a significant role ensuring advanced competitions in business. In this, to achieve a competitive edge is not all about quality of goods and services and the procedure, however, it involves performance of the entire supply chain system (Selnes, 19-35). The creation of quality management system of supply chain using the above management ideas not only promotes and facilitates engagement of all stakeholders, but also promotes the implementation of quality control of the entire supply chain.

Wal-Mart is the world’s largest and strongest retailer that has gained its competitive edge using the supply chain management. This retail giant stocks goods from more than 70 states across the world and at any given time; it controls more than 11,000 stores in different countries across world (Robinson, n.p.). Managing this kind of business environment effectively and efficiently, supply chain control strategies and system is crucial. Walmart’s is committed to a business approach of minimizing costs of supply chains and deliver quality services to its customers. Wal-Mart has remained as the leading retailer since it’s up to date in the changing environment. As result, Wal-Mart has upped its supply chain by using TQM. Wal-Mart has embraced TQM in controlling retail and supply chain planning and execution of all its operations (Robinson, n.p.). As a result, Wal-Mart can deal with current complexities in consumer-driven market. Throughout planning to delivery, TQM has played a significant role in helping Wal-Mart minimize cost, maximize profitability and integrate its services, enabling it to deliver its high-quality goods and services to customer’s premises.

Wal-Mart’s general technique of supply chain management are quite different other element of overall supply chains namely purchasing, operations, distribution and integration (Robinson, n.p.). For Wal-Mart, supply chain start with the purchases manager who play a significant role in making decision on the goods and services to sell, search for vendors and plan deals for the goods and services. On the other hand, the operation part of the supply chain emphasizes on demand strategy, forecasting and inventory control (Baroto, 120). Through forecasting, it can estimate customers’ demands for various products using the past recorded data, external factors such as sales and promotions and variation in trends and competition.

Using the demand planning, Wal-Mart make accurate projections, a very key step in ensuring effective inventory control. Using the information obtained from the projection, it ensures that the stock in its warehouses are enough and are not either too much or too little to meet customer’s demand (Smithson, n.p.). Transferring goods and services from the warehouse or the manufacturing environment to the different stores set in various parts of the world. The transfer of these goods to the customers is ultimately the distribution role of the supply chain. The supply chain integration links the different operations and information among all the stakeholders in the supply chain to maximize efficacies.

The success of Wal-Mart can be earthed to its use of TQM decision function in its day to day operations. In Wal-Mart, TQM is viewed from three quality standard approaches. The first approach focuses on the lowest quality anticipation of the high number of customers. To maintain this target group, Wal-Mart ensures that most its brands meet the needs of this group by ensuring that its products and services are of terrific value (Smithson, n.p.). The second approach focuses on market average quality for cheap retailers. This approach focuses much on the performance of the Wal-Mart staff, particularly sale people. The last approach focuses on the quality levels that are beyond market averages. This approach is applied for very few Wal-Mart’s output that include but not limited to Sam’s Choice brand. Through the three approaches, Wal-Mart is addresses its operational management for its quality management and ensure high quality in all its operations (Robinson, n.p.). In addition, using the above discussed supply chain management techniques, Wal-Mart minimizes its costs of operations in handling its products and inventory, controlling selection in its stores that in turn leads to lower prices that are transferred to customers.

In conlusion, Wal-Mart has achieved its top most position as a retail enterprise globally due to its excellent supplier integration process, embracement of technology, its distribution processes, control and management of its logistic, inventory control, and products anticipation. From the above discussion, it is evident that TQM has played a significant role creating competitive edge for Wal-Mart in today’s rapid changing world. For this reason, Wal-Mart provide its high-quality products to its esteemed customers at lower price as compared to its competitors giving it a competitive edge.