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Apple Supply Chain Management, Strategic Supplier Selection

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It is important to note that when consumers buy Apple products, they buy it because of its design, user interface and cutting edge technology. Thus, these constitute to be Apple’ s core competency. The parts for Apple products are quite similar to those of its competitors including Dell, Hp or even Toshiba. What differs is the user interface that Apple has developed and it gives Apple the edge over the competition. By outsourcing on the production, Apple has easily focused on designing the products and on the research and development of its products.

In this way, suppliers can benefit from the research and development at Apple to produce one of the leading technologies such as the LCD for iPhone that took a long time for the competitors to copy. The sourcing strategies for Apple are based on its own strategy. Apple has been successful in developing a strategy where it has gotten ahead of the competition by developing the latest technology and once the competition catches on to Apple’ s latest technology, Apple goes ahead and comes up with another consumer product or an extension of the previous one.

Thus, for Apple, the technology is the main focus and the suppliers are rendered secondary in the whole picture. The suppliers of Apple are diverse and do not enjoy high bargaining power over Apple. Apple cannot allow its products to be made public as competition is exceedingly high in the technology industry. Thus Apple demands strict security controls over the privacy of its products. Recently, there have been cases of suicide at the factory of Foxxcon which has raised a concern about the extent of the power Apple has over its suppliers.

Even though the main supplier for Apple is the Taiwanese factory, Foxxcon, Apple has various other suppliers all over Asian countries including China and Hong Kong. These suppliers further decrease the power of the suppliers. But more than one supplier often results in inconsistent qualities and issues of privacy control.  

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