New strategic alliance to benefit AU MBA students and alumni

Athabasca University’s (AU) Faculty of Business and the Supply Chain Management Association (SCMA) are coming together in joint strategic partnership. This new tactical alliance arose from the continued necessity to expand global competitive advantage in the ever-evolving world of supply chain management. Supply chain management is no longer a straight line from point A to point B; raw material to product to consumer. It encompasses entirely new and growing challenges from micro segmentation, to technology and digitization, to incorporating service chains into existing product chains.

“Supply chains have never been more challenging to manage than they are today,” says Dr. Deborah Hurst, Dean of Athabasca University’s Faculty of Business. According to Dr. Hurst, “supply chains have impacts not only on company profits, efficiencies, and environmental footprint, they can also transform local economies around the world and are sources of true competitive advantage. Historical movement of raw materials like lumber, oil, or iron from around the world were transformed into end user products landing on store shelves and eventually into our homes.”

“Now raw materials can be anything from service to data, not your typical supply chain ‘products’ but it still needs to be harvested, analysed, and moved through organizations before it can be parsed into action.” Dr. Hurst adds, “organizations that can translate these new product streams effectively will have a huge advantage over those who fail to fuel their innovation with information.”

As supply chains continue to develop, grow, and evolve it is important for AU to continue to partner with organizations such as SCMA to deliver executive management education for today’s global business environment. This alliance is true to AU’s commitment to remove barriers to access education by allowing students to study anytime and anywhere – Supply Chain Management Professionals (SCMP) will be able to continue to work while they cultivate their executive management and leadership acumen and ultimately their future success.

This partnership will provide people currently working in supply chain the opportunity to develop soft skills in leadership as well as hard-management acumen, and because transfer credit is given for those that hold the SCMP designation, it allows students to finish their Online MBA for executives program up to six months faster. Conversely, AU Online MBA for executives graduates will also be granted advanced standing within the SCMP program with a reduction of two modules and three workshops.

Dr. Hurst explains “This is exactly the type of relationship we want to build. It’s a win, win, win for students, for SCMA, and for our Faculty of Business.”

“It’s all about providing our members with sustained options for career development,” says Cheryl Farrow, President and CEO with SCMA. “The types of skills required in supply chain management are constantly evolving. New trading relationships, technology disruptions, more active corporate responsibility programs, and increasing competitive pressures are just some of the reasons there are growing expectations of the supply chain role. Delivering a strong, highly applicable education through this alliance will benefit students, professionals, and employers.”

For students that currently hold the SCMP designation, this new alliance may affect you. Please contact SSQ for additional information and benefit to you.

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