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Executive Education Supply Chain Management Programs

Through the Center for Supply Chain Excellence, the Chaifetz School of Business offers executive education programs that provide every member of the supply chain industry significant opportunities to improve both corporate profitability and return on assets.

The certificate programs are designed for those who have at least three years of experience in any of the functional areas of supply chain management.

A candidate who completes the certificate requirements will receive a certificate of completion from Saint Louis University Center for Supply Chain Excellence. This non-academic credit, executive education certificates will establish a permanent record within the Richard A. Chaifetz School of Business at Saint Louis University, documenting the recipient’s exposure to state-of-the-art supply chain management techniques. 

Members of the Center for Supply Chain Excellence can redeem member discounts on program tuition. Contact the Center at to learn more.

Integrated Supply Chain Management Certificate 

SLU’s Integrated Supply Chain Management Certificate offers comprehensive management development techniques and tools for professionals involved in inventory management, purchasing, warehousing/transportation, project management and lean principles in the overall supply chain pipeline. The certificate program is offered in the fall and spring semesters and includes the following courses.

Spring 2023 Virtual Integrated Supply Chain Management Certificate Schedule

  • Project Management and Supply Chain Simulation | January 26
  • Finance for Supply Chain Professionals | January 27
  • Betting On Uncertain Demand | February 23
  • Managing Variability in the Supply Chain | February 24
  • Managing Inventories for Increased Profitability | March 9-10
  • Strategic Sourcing and Change Management | March 23-24
  • Business Analytics for Supply Chain | April 6-7
  • Transportation and Warehouse Management | April 27-28
  • Graduation and Project Presentations | May 12

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Business Analytics for Supply Chain

Business analytics is the art of analyzing business data for decision-making. In the context of supply chain management, business analytics is about combining supply chain related data and solving specific SCM problems. An example of such a problem is finalizing a location of a new distribution center by analyzing the variables: city population, cost of living, proximity to suppliers, customers, ports and airports.

This course provides a foundation for analytical concepts, techniques and tools required for supply-chain decision-making. Participants learn the basic concepts of analytics and acquire necessary skills for using them for decision making. They also get hands-on exposure to forecasting and create visualizations to solve specific SCM problems.

Topic preview:

  • Importance of analytics in supply chain management
  • Key analytics concepts related to supply chain management
  • Developing supply chain metrics
  • Demand forecasting
  • Supply chain-based decision making with current analytics tools

Participants learn to:

  • Develop supply chain metrics for analysis
  • Use supply chain metrics to make business decisions
  • Forecast demand (using ARIMA model) 
  • Use proprietary data visualization tools to solve problems
Finance for Supply Chain Professionals

Implementation of a supply chain is expensive and risky. It requires substantial investment in the areas of finance and human capital with unknown results. Supply chain operations profoundly impact a company’s income and financial statements in various ways, including purchasing, sourcing, product design, manufacturing, transportation, logistics, packaging, storage and distributions. Nevertheless, many supply chain professionals have no or little knowledge of how their work contributes to the financial and income statements. Days inventory, days in sales outstanding and days in pay profoundly affect the company’s cash flow.

The purpose of this one-day workshop is to outline how integrated supply chain tools improve the financial health of companies. Fundamentals of supply chain principles have to be firmly in place before any attempts to use expensive information technologies and supply chain tools. Key metrics that contribute to a company’s financial health will be addressed to understand the basics of financial and income statements within and between supply chain partners.

Topic preview:

  • Fundamentals of supply chain principles
  • Common traits for top supply chain performers
  • Fundamentals of income and financial statement  statements in supply chain
  • Profitability: Return on investment, return on asset and economic profit
  • Return on equity
  • Flow of financial information within supply chain networks
  • Bankruptcy Model
Managing Inventories for Increased Profitability

Inventory management deals with specifying the shape and percentage of stocked goods, including raw materials, work in process, and finished goods. It is required at many locations across a supply network to support production and customer requirements.

The scope of inventory management concerns the fine lines between replenishment lead time, carrying costs of inventory, asset management, inventory forecasting, inventory valuation, inventory visibility, future inventory price forecasting, physical inventory, available physical space for inventory, quality management, replenishment, returns and defective goods and demand forecasting. Balancing these competing requirements leads to optimal inventory levels, which is an ongoing process as the business needs shift and react to the wider environment.

Management of inventories, with the primary objective of controlling stock levels within the physical distribution system, balances the need for product availability against the need for minimizing stock holding and handling costs.

Topic preview:

  • Importance of inventory as an investment
  • Functions of inventory
  • Demand Planning and Forecasting

  • Inventory stratification and analysis

  • Service levels and safety stock

  • Performance metrics

  • Inventory costs

  • Current topics affecting inventory management

Participants learn:

  • The importance of inventory to the enterprise
  • To describe the critical functions of inventory in the supply chain
  • How to apply forecasting concepts to optimize supply chain performance
  • How to understand methods and value of inventory stratification
  • Methods of calculating safety stock
  • How to use metrics in managing inventory
Project Management and Supply Chain Simulation

This one-day workshop is a part of the Integrated Supply Chain Management Certificate Program managed by the Center for Supply Chain Excellence at Saint Louis University.

A supply chain is a complex structure involving multiple partners, companies and even countries. Communication is vital to the ability of the supply chain to meet customer needs while effectively utilizing resources. Through a simple simulation, participants understand the importance of clear communication in a supply chain. Operating in teams, they use financial metrics and dashboards to measure the success of their efforts.

As part of the Integrated Supply Chain Management Certificate Program, teams select and complete a process improvement project for a company of their choosing. This project must be completed within the time frame of the certificate program. The workshop equips them with basic project management concepts and tools that will support successful completion of the selected project.

Participants learn:

  • How to perform a computer-based, multi-cycle supply chain simulation
  • How to identify issues arising from the simulation, suggest improvements, and test a revised simulation scenario
  • How to form project teams and evaluate possible supply chain projects to be completed within the Integrated Supply Chain Certificate program
  • The four phases of a project
  • The key tools used in preparing and executing a successful project plan
Strategic Sourcing and Change Management

Sourcing exerts considerable influence on the success of any company.  As a business function, effective sourcing is key to ensuring the ready supply of materials, goods and services – wherever they may originate. Sourcing also controls a substantial portion of the company’s spend, making it instrumental in the company’s profit potential.  It serves as a beacon for quality and sustainability, too, as it controls the integrity of inputs that eventually become outputs for the business.  Failures to uphold organizational values in supplier relationships can irreparably harm the reputation of the company.   

Relatedly, change management is essential to the success of any organization, yet it is very difficult to move organizations in desired, needed directions. Yet, managing organizational change is vital to not only sustained success but survival. As former GE CEO Jack Welch once quipped famously: “If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, the end is near.”  Yet, how are individuals and organizations expected to develop receptivity and the means for change?  This session will examine key success factors for effecting and sustaining change.  We will review models that help to minimize performance gaps and enable growth.

Topic preview:

  • What is strategic sourcing?
  • Total cost of ownership and decision-making process

  • Global sourcing issues

  • Supplier collaboration

  • Supplier evaluation and scorecards

Participants learn:

  • To determine when to buy versus make

  • How to manage supplier performance

  • Techniques to measure, evaluate and manage suppliers and costs

  • Keys to implementing change

  • How to avoid significant performance drops when implementing change

  • The essential ingredients to change management

Betting On Uncertain Demand

Uncertain demand complicates the management of supply. If demand were known, we could produce the right quantities at the right times, schedule just enough capacity, and manage operations at minimal cost. Instead, fluctuating demand results in supply chains that face shortages, surpluses, and exorbitant expenses. Most firms respond by seeking better forecasts, expecting demand planners to serve as a crystal ball for future events. This does not work. Forecasts are almost always wrong and there is no silver bullet to improve them. In this course, we examine a better approach, one that explicitly accounts for uncertainty in demand, yielding decisions that hedge against the unknown. Course topics apply to tactical, operational, and strategic decision making across a supply chain.

Topic preview:

  • Managing the tradeoff between too much inventory and not enough
  • Reducing supply-demand mismatch costs
  • Setting service levels

Participants learn:

  • How to move from point forecasts to likelihoods
  • How to use underage costs, overage costs, and demand uncertainty to calculate order or production quantities
  • How to use reactive capacity to reduce supply-demand mismatches
  • How to improve service levels via consideration of holding costs and back-order penalties
Transportation and Warehouse Management 

Transportation and warehousing represent among the most vital activities in business success today. Transportation provides the connectivity for the focal company to critical sources of supply and reach with customers in the market. It is also the largest area of spend in logistics. Warehousing complements this transportation’s connectivity with suppliers and customers by providing strategic locations for feeding the business and its customers. Both activities see elevated stature in the modern environment, with elevated customer service expectations and capacity constraints making it difficult to fulfill market commitments profitably.  Both areas are also witnessing rampant innovation and technological advancements that are altering their fundamentals and traditional mindsets. This workshop will examine the strategy and execution of transportation and warehousing in the modern context, providing methods and tools for navigating the challenges and opportunities these two critical supply chain activities present.

Topic preview:

  • Examine the fundamentals of transportation and warehousing execution

  • Review the strategic and operational decisions faced by supply chain management

  • Appreciate the evolving roles of transportation and warehousing

  • Evaluate how the introduction of new technologies influence decision making

  • Measure how transportation and warehousing performance influence supply chain and business excellence.

Participants learn:

  • Measure transportation and warehousing performance

  • Determine transportation and warehousing costs in the context of total logistics cost

  • Assess the interface between transportation and warehousing decisions in order to optimize customer service and minimize costs

  • Apply activity-based management to “right-size” services and costs

  • Make key decisions in transportation and warehousing that elevate company performance and sustainable outcomes.

Managing Variability in Supply Chain

Variability is the dominant cause of mismatches between supply and demand, from daily inflections in demand to large-scale supply chain disruptions. In this course, we examine the influence of variability throughout the supply chain, from its impact on simple processes to its effect on complex networks. We also discuss variability mitigation strategies designed to improve supply chain responsiveness and profitability. The course material applies to a broad audience from executives to tactical-level employees. Employees from both manufacturing and service industries will benefit from the topics covered.

Topic preview:

  • Supply chain performance evaluation

  • Influence of variability on supply chain performance

  • Variability reduction and mitigation

  • Variability buffering

  • Variability pooling

Participants learn:

  • Key supply chain performance measures
  • The impact of variability on WIP, flow rate and flow time
  • Why high utilization intensifies the effects of variability
  • Strategies to reduce processing time and input variability
  • Tactics to buffer against variability via inventory, capacity, and time
  • Why variability pooling can decrease the amount of buffering required to achieve a given level of performance


Global Operations and Leadership Summit

SLU's Global Operations and Leadership Summit is a week-long intensive program designed for executives in operations and supply chain management. This virtual certificate program is offered over the summer. Stay tuned for the 2023 dates!

Topics Include:

  • Leading Change & the Agile Leader
  • Global Supply Chain Risk Mitigation & Leadership Shift
  • Thought Leadership in the Age of Global Supply Chain Competitiveness
  • Global Finance, Policy and Economics
  • Global Trade Policy, Security, and Supply Chain Leadership
  • Leading through Sequential Decision Problems with Uncertain Information
  • Supply Chain Strategy and Global Sourcing Execution
  • Mexico Global Supply Chain Operations; Leadership Dynamics & Situational Analysis
  • Advancing Technology and Innovation Application
  • Talent Strategies: Achieving Success Smartly as you Attract, Develop and Retain Talent
  • Logistics Competency & Supplier Relationship Management (Insource vs Outsource, Logistics Operations, Critical to Serve Capabilities & Contingency Planning Concepts)
  • Executive Insights into Export Controls and Leadership Competency
  • Global Supply Chain Security and Leading Your Company to the Promise Land
  • Organizational Design for Competitive Advantage