Kathleen A. Abel , pp. 39. MAM/Sektionen för Management, 2009.
This paper describes and examines an application of geographic information systems (GIS) – a three dimensional visual mapping software as a supply chain risk management (SCRM) tool. 1 The focus is in the ―added value‖ potential of GIS to assist business risk management in their supply chain decision making which has been minimally addressed in the literature. The underlying basis for this study is Hendricks and Singhal’s (2003) research and framework which linked supply chain performance to shareholder value. This paper proposes the addition of GIS as an added value tool to the current armamentarium of key operational metrics as outlined in Hendricks and Singhal’s framework. Four supporting hypotheses are challenged through a literature search and empirically tested through a survey methodology to assess business decision maker’s opinion regarding; 1. The level of their awareness of risks in their supply chain network. 2. The perception of information gaps present in their current risk management tools 3. The potential to utilize GIS as an added value operational metric tool to enhance their supply chain decision making and 4. Their return of investment, ROI, expectations for utilizing GIS to achieve competitive advantage for greater shareholder value. The findings from the literature and survey revealed that supply chain decision makers overall awareness is not proactive and leads to less than optimal decision making. This reactive approach to supply chain risk was viewed as a result of the use of supply chain risk assessment tools and programs that are suboptimal. Thus, decision makers not only desired, but require tools with the characteristics of GIS to give a broader and deeper view of their supply chain networks to optimize decision making. In addition, business decision makers are willing to invest in GIS to bridge the current supply chain information gap to achieve, maintain, or restore competitive advantage as well as utilize GIS to reduce the negative aspects of supply chain glitches on shareholder value. Keywords: Geographical Information System, GIS; Supply Chain Risk Management, SCRM; Contingency Planning; Enterprise Risk Management, ERM; Shareholder Value