Purchasing and Distribution

Module summary

Module code: MARK1138
Level: 5
Credits: 30
School: Business Faculty
Department: Systems Management and Strategy
Module Coordinator(s): Li Zhou



It aims to provide students with a range of techniques and strategies which can be used to effectively employ varies of resources; to undertake risk analysis from different aspects of purchasing and supply; to identify proactive and avoid risk as well as initiate post-event recovery; to measure, develop and improve supplier performance in order to achieve competitiveness, effectiveness, efficiency and profitability within the supply chain; to effectively manage stores and distribution throughout supply chain; to coordinate both upstream and downstream of supply chain in order to reduce lead time and minimize overall cost whilst satisfy ultimate customers.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course a student will be able to:

1 Be able to identify the sources of risks and the likely impact of those risks upon the organisation;
2 Be able to develop an integrated approach to help enhance overall supply chain performance;
3 Report the factors that strategically affect the design and organisation of a stores and distribution network;
4 Compare and contrast different negotiation strategies and styles and their impacts in a given range of situations;
5 Apply techniques on transport mode selection and outsource decision;
6 Formulate plans to effectively manage work groups and teams.

Indicative content

Management in the purchasing function: The challenges of management; Organisation structures and culture; Management decision making.
Risk management and supply chain vulnerability: Understanding the nature of risk in purchasing and supply; Risk management processes and structures; Managing risk and supply chain vulnerability.
Improving supply chain performance: Developing and improving supplier performance; Maximising competitiveness; Advanced negotiations in the supply chain; Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the supply chain.
Stores and distribution: Scope of stores and distribution; Distribution planning and moving goods; Warehousing and storage of goods; Controlling stores and distribution; Evaluating the role of information and communication technology (ICT).
Operations management in purchasing and outsourcing: The design and management of the operations network.

Teaching and learning activity

This course will be delivered through one hour weekly lectures and one hour seminars. In addition students will be required to attend computer lab session and work on the online activities for excel modelling.


Group Presentation - 30% weighting, 40% pass mark.
Learning outcomes 1, 3,4, 6 & 7.
Outline Details - Explain how different elements in purchasing and supply chain management add value to organisations and customers. Use real case examples to support your arguments. The group work task will be assessed by a 20 minute presentation plus a 10 minute question session. 300 words.

Take Home Examination - 70% weighting, 40% pass mark.
Learning outcomes 2 - 6.
Outline Details - 3 hour exam.

Students are not required to pass all elements of summative assessment in order to pass the course.