The Impact of Flexible Lead Times in a Forest Industry Supply Chain: A Simulation Study

A. Sialiauka (Finland) and K.-M. Bjrk (Germany)


Supply Chain Flexibility, Simulation, Genetic Algorithms


In this article a simulation framework has been developed to examine the influence of the flexible lead times on the supply chain performance with an example of a Nordic paper industry supply chain. The flexibility for a producer in the form of flexible lead times was supposed as one possible instrument for reducing the total supply chain costs. Since this flexibility leads to an additional cost for the distributors, the challenge was to find how much more manufacturer can gain with flexibility than the distributors will loose, and consequently the whole supply chain has to be considered. The study was based on an actual data from a Nordic finish tissue paper producer. The simulation experiments prove that the flexible lead times are indeed an efficient approach and can reduce the total supply chain costs without a decrease in the service level.

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