Detailed Programme

The 'Executive Master Class in Supply Chain Management' starts with four core modules. These have been designed to give you a superb Supply Chain Management learning experience and get you working alongside your fellow participants and faculty. When you’ve completed the core modules, it will be up to you to decide what you want to learn by choosing electives that fulfil yours and your company’s needs. We’ll suggest two learning paths but at the same time allow you to build your own learning path. You will find more details when you browse through this programme webpage.

Core modules

Kick-off evening session (19 April 2017 as of 6pm, Ghent)

During the kick-off session you will be introduced to the programme, the Vlerick way of learning and key practicalities. We will spend some time to get to know each other and together enjoy a welcome dinner.

  • Studying at Vlerick Business School: our approach to learning with impact
  • Programme overview and practicalities
  • Welcome to Vlerick Alumni
  • Get-to-know your colleagues

Module 1: Strategy and planning for an effective supply chain (20, 21 & 22 April 2017, Ghent)

As globalisation and competition amongst suppliers increases, the spotlight on supply chain management is shining like never before. This module will show you how to turn your organisation’s strategy into an effective supply chain design. You’ll be guided through a business simulation to introduce the dynamics of supply chains and gain insights into the strategic role of the supply chain manager. We’ll be investigating inventory management and integrated supply chain planning, covering multi-echelon safety stock optimisation, forecasting techniques and capacity planning.

  • Understanding supply chain dynamics
  • Using your supply chain to create a competitive advantage
  • Supply chain segmentation
    • Aligning the supply chain to your customer segments
    • Designing efficient, flexible and adaptable supply chains
  • Planning and managing inventories in a supply chain
    • Balancing inventory costs and customer service
    • Benefits and risks of inventory pooling
    • Managing uncertainty: securing your safety stock in a multi-echelon system
  • Integrated supply chain planning
    • Gaining practical knowledge of demand planning, forecasting and inventory optimisation tools and techniques
    • Understanding the value of data analytics in the supply chain
    • Matching supply and demand

Module 2: Structuring the global supply chain (18, 19 & 20 May 2017, Brussels)

You as a supplier – how does your organisation fit in the chain? We’ll discuss supply chains from the perspectives of distribution, global network design, contract management and the use of technologies in the total supply chain. You’ll identify challenges in international distribution and understand and analyse the cost of distribution. We’ll explore outsourcing and service contracts in the context of international supply chain collaborations - applications include service level agreements, gain sharing mechanisms, global partnerships and alliances.

  • Developing a strategy for distribution logistics
    • Identifying challenges in international distribution
    • Learning the strengths and weaknesses of different network designs
    • Understanding and analysing the cost of distribution for the purpose of distribution network decision-making
  • Global integration and local responsiveness
    • Decision-making in international manufacturing
    • Recognising the strategic role of the plant and identify potential lead plants
    • Using value-adding technology in the supply chain
  • Service level agreements (SLAs) for outsourced services
    • The benefits and drawbacks of outsourcing in a supply chain
    • Learning the principles of ‘intelligent’ SLAs
    • Increasing value by applying gain sharing principles

Module 3: Managing cross-functional supply chains (22, 23 & 24 June 2017, Brussels)

This module focuses on collaborating with areas like sales, marketing and finance – and how to use collaboration into a competitive advantage. First you’ll learn what effective sales and operations planning is and how it links to revenue management and performance management. Then we’ll explore the impact of supply chain management on cost control and financial performance, addressing topics such as cost-to-serve, working capital reduction and cash management. Finally we’ll discuss the supply chain organisation model and the roles and responsibilities of a supply chain department and a supply chain manager.

  • Integrated sales and operations planning (S&OP)
    • Synchronising forecasted demand with supply resources
    • S&OP as a mechanism for communication and collaboration across functions
    • Applying revenue management methods to increase supply chain profits
    • Defining relevant S&OP performance indicators
  • Understanding supply chain cost and financial performance
    • Understand the impact supply chain management can have on financial performance
    • Identify the drivers of cost in the supply chain
    • Carry out a cost-to-serve analysis
    • Recognise the mechanics and various accounts that make up a firm’s balance sheet
    • Learn how to manage the various trade-offs that firms face when dealing with working capital
  • Organising for supply chain management
    • Understand your organisation’s supply chain maturity
    • Learn the roles and responsibilities of the supply chain manager
    • Identify the best design for supply chain excellence

Module 4: Managing agile and sustainable supply chains (24, 25 & 26 August, Leuven)

We’ll provide hands-on insight into how to identify and analyse supply chain risks. You’ll learn how to build resilience into your supply chain through reviewing global sourcing options and mass customisation. As a result you’ll be able to mitigate uncertainty and generate higher margins. The second part of this module will show you how to orchestrate supply chain sustainability. You’ll learn key sustainability principles and know how to implement them in your firm and extended network.

  • Understand and manage global supply chain complexity and risk
    • Understand the challenges of global sourcing
    • Use total landed cost to identify the most cost-effective global networks
    • Learn how to identify, analyse, manage and mitigate risks in the supply chain
    • Explore and apply simulation techniques for risk related decision-making
    • Highlight capabilities that allow a firm to anticipate and overcome disruptions
    • Learn how mass customisation strategy helps companies achieve higher levels of flexibility and lower costs
  • Supply chain sustainability
    • Learn how to create and protect long-term environmental, social and economic value for all stakeholders and understand the principles of sustainability
    • Build a business case for supply chain sustainability
    • Master practical tools to engage with suppliers on sustainability

In-company project

With this Executive Master Class, you’ll have an impact in your organisation! Not only are our classes filled with practical examples, case studies and guest speakers. Through an in-company project, you’ll be able to work on your own challenges, relevant to your business.

In order to meet the Executive Master Class certification requirements, you should successfully execute an in-company project, which allows you to translate your knowledge into business practice. Throughout this in-company project, you’ll apply the knowledge and experience acquired during the programme in your own business. This project is carried out under the supervision of a faculty adviser and an internal company adviser. The scope of the project is defined in consultation with the company and the Vlerick adviser. The outcome of the project is a practical and relevant management report that will help you realise the impact of the Executive Master Class in your business.

You can start with the project as of the very first module. Of course, we’re on your side and we’ll help you frame the project scope and link you to a Vlerick faculty adviser. You’ll need to complete the in-company project by September 2017.

Recommended paths

When you’ve completed the core modules, it will be up to you to decide what you want to learn. Based on our experience we recommend three possible paths. You choose the one that best fulfils yours and your company’s needs. Not sure what to choose? We‘ll be happy to advice you on this!

Path Expert

Expert Path - "Deepen your supply chain expertise"

Select a combination of 2 or 3 modules (in total 7 - 9 days):

Purchasing Management (October, Brussels)

This three-day module focuses on the essentials of proper and successful strategic purchasing management. After this programme, you'll understand your organisation's purchasing activities, and how purchasing transforms from an administrative or operational function to a strategic tool for success.

  • Determine the most effective purchasing strategy for any product or service
  • Develop powerful tools to assess and monitor your suppliers
  • Understand the dynamics of the purchasing function and use it to add value to your organisation
  • Learn about the future purchasing trends

Operational Excellence (November-December, Gent-Leuven)

In 2 three-day modules you’ll learn the meaning of operational excellence and how to effectively use the lean tools and methodologies to create value for your organisation. You'll learn how to correctly apply lean thinking, principles and tools. And you'll focus on how to manage lean projects.
  • Develop an integrated overview of operational excellence practices
  • Correctly apply lean thinking, principles and tools
  • Learn what a lean enterprise really means and how you manage lean projects

Supply Chain Finance: Integrating Supply Chain & Financial Management (December, Brussels)

In this module, you’ll work through a hands-on case study and you’ll build an integrated view on your business’ management. You’ll study profitability improvements through cost management, working capital reduction, product portfolio rationalisations, and revenue management.
  • Work with results from Activity-Based-Costing, Cost-to-Serve, and Cost of Goods Sold analyses and present the outcomes to your management
  • Know how inventories and (customer/supplier) payment terms impact your company’s working capital need and other financial performance metrics such as Return on Assets or Return on Capital Employed
  • Segment customers based on their profitability, and improve distribution channels to these customers
  • Evaluate and rationalise product portfolio’s and develop skills in product pricing and revenue analysis
  • Reap the benefits available through effectively managed distribution channels
  • Integrate views from operations, supply chain, finance and marketing/sales and develop a realistic and executable action plan
Path Leadership

Leadership Path - "Grow professionally and as a person"

Negotiation to Create Value (November - December, Brussels)

Don't just explore the process and tactics at the negotiating table but develop the skills you need to lead negotiations with multiple parties and close optimum deals. Sharpen your negotiation skills and, moreover, learn to secure win-win results for all parties.

The People Manager (November - December, Brussels)
Your employees, and the way you steer and motivate them, make or break the success of your company. This programme therefore develops your people management skills to sharpen your company's performance and competitive advantage.

Path Pick & Choose

Pick & Choose

The recommended paths don’t fully address your needs? Then simply build your own path by selecting the 2 or 3 electives most suited to yours & your company’s needs. You can choose these electives from all short-focused programmes with a minimum of 7 and up to a total maximum of 9 days. Our programme finder will give you a good overview of the broad range of possibilities. Or you can just contact us for further advice.

Discover our unique modular approach: It’s all about you!

The Vlerick Difference

We have a unique approach to learning, which focuses on bringing theory to life, giving you the skills and insight you need to really make a difference. Spend time on our beautiful campuses, and you become part of one of the most active business communities in Europe, learning in a way that will help you to be a more effective and productive business leader throughout your career. Learning at Vlerick really is an experience far away from traditional classroom learning. You’ll work collaboratively with your faculty and fellow participants to bring your ideas to life in a robust and practical way.

Digital − the new normal in business − will also strengthen your learning process. Our online platform ‘Showpad’ and the use of a tablet grant you access to all of the learning materials anywhere, anytime, and enable you to go beyond note-taking: take pictures of the flipchart during a brainstorming exercise, record a video of a role play, participate in a quick poll, create a Wikipage together … and share them on the spot with your group.

Find out more

We facilitate your journey. You make the difference.

Drive real change in your organisation

A learning experience with real impact on your operations? A management programme tailored to the specific needs of your business? Contact us and discover how we can design and deliver customised programmes for your team that add genuine value to your organisation.

Need help?

Contact our Programme Advisor
Programme Advisor
Tel + 32 9 210 98 84
Find the programme most relevant for you!

Our programme finder allows you to find the management programme that best fits your needs.

Find a Programme

Meet Us

Info Sessions & Open Days
17 Nov
Drop In on our Brussels Campus
Category: General Info Sessions

16 Feb
Drop In on our Leuven Campus
Category: General Info Sessions

11 Mar
Experience Vlerick Day Ghent
Category: General Info Sessions

Meet our faculty

Ann Vereecke
Prof Ann Vereecke, key faculty member for Executive Master Class in Supply Chain Management

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