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21871 Strategic Value Chain Management

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2018 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Business
Credit points: 8 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


This subject focuses on development of advanced conceptual skills in value chain analysis through reviewing up-to-date, leading-edge knowledge and decision-making in complex and unpredictable business environments. Students acquire an understanding of the issues and challenges faced by organisations managing the value chain in the global context, with particular emphasis on the strategic aspects of managing services and operations in these organisations.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

Upon successful completion of this subject students should be able to:
1. Understand challenges in the area of strategic value chain management related to social, environmental and technological issues
2. Relate value chain concepts, techniques and examples of best practice to their own work environment
3. Apply advanced conceptual skills in value chain management to complex business problems through exposure to up-to-date, leading-edge knowledge of core business processes
4. Demonstrate an understanding of the dynamic nature of relationships between business strategy, operations and business global environment

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

Global businesses have established value chain networks to work within the emerging business environment. Products and services now have multiple applications and business organisations are redefining their core capabilities and processes. Many products become services as they move through their life cycles as manufacturers address new stakeholder expectations. In the traditional business model companies competed with each other; in the developing business model "global value chain networks" are competing with each other. At the industry level value chains can be seen as business network structures, or confederations, that are developing from traditional corporations.

This subject contributes to the development of the following graduate attributes:

  • Attitudes and values

This subject also contributes specifically to develop the following Program Learning Objectives for the Executive MBA:

  • 4.1: Demonstrate a high level personal autonomy and accountability for professional practice that adheres to the principles of responsible corporate governance and social responsibility

Teaching and learning strategies

The subject explores the concepts of rapidly growing business models using examples and case studies. The model integrates research, design and development, manufacturing, sales and marketing, distribution, and service activities in a holistic analysis of business models and their contemporary applications.

Content (topics)

  • Global value and emerging business models
  • Value drivers and stakeholder value management
  • Operational and strategic cost drivers
  • Value chains as networks
  • Operational and strategic outsourcing
  • Mergers, acquisitions and strategic alliances


Assessment task 1: Assignment (Group)


This addresses subject learning objective(s):

1 and 4

Weight: 30%

Assessment task 2: Assignment (Individual)


This addresses subject learning objective(s):

1, 3 and 4

Weight: 20%

Assessment task 3: Assignment (Individual)


This addresses subject learning objective(s):

1, 2, 3 and 4

Weight: 50%

Minimum requirements

Students must achieve at least 50% of the subject's total marks.

Required texts


Walters D Rainbird M (2016) “Creating Value: A Practical Guide for Boards and Directors” Australian Institute of Company Directors

Resources for this subject will be provided on UTS Online. Students will be expected to complete readings prior to class.

Are set out below. They include classic articles or texts that underpin the theory of this subject. They also include more contemporary works. Finally there are references to further reading if a particular area is of interest.


Lecture 1 and 2


J Magretta, “Why Business Models Matter”, Harvard Business Review, May 2002.


G Kenny “Repositioning Is Not A New Business Model” Harvard Business Review April 2016

M Goedhart T Koller D Wessels The real business of business McKinsey & Company March 2015

Further Reading

Making Value Chains Work Better for the Poor: A Toolbook for Practitioners of Value Chain Analysis - UK Department for International Development - 2008


P Evans P Forth, Navigating a World of Digital Disruption, Boston Consulting Group 2015

Lecture 3

“How Digital Delivery Puts the Restaurant Value Chain Up for Grab” Boston Consulting Group January 2017

“IT as a Service - from Build to Consume” McKinsey September 2016

Further Reading

“The Age of Analytics” McKinsey December 2016

Digital in Industry” McKinsey August 2016

Automotive Revolution - perspectives towards 2030” McKinsey January 2016

Lecture 4


The Demand Chain: Connecting with the Customer Booz Allen & Hamilton 2010

C M Christensen, M E Raynor and R McDonald, “What is Disruptive Innovation?” Harvard Business Review, December 2015.


The M&A Paradox” Financial Times January 16 2014

The Value Premium of Organic Growth” McKinsey January 2017

“Value Chain Reintegration” Boston Consulting Group 2014

Further Reading

“What Private Equity Strategy Planners Can Teach Public Companies” McKinsey October 2016

The Eight Essentials of Innovation” McKinsey April 2015

Lecture 5


A Slywotzky “Business Design” January 2015


G Jude C Macdonald The Personal Supply Chain Telstra Report 2015

Further Reading

K Bozdogan Towards An Integration of the Lean Enterprise system, Total Quality Management, Six Sigma and Related Enterprise Process Improvement Methods MIT Working Paper 2010

Lecture 6


Maximising Shareholder Value: Maximising Clarity in Decision Making Chartered Institute of Management Accountants 2004


“The Cost Conscious Australian Organisation” Accenture/ Australian Financial Review 2013

J Kotzen T Nolan F Plaschke J Tucker J Ghesquieres The Art of Performance Management Boston Consulting Group March 2015

Finding the True Cost of Portfolio Complexity” McKinsey September 2016

Further Reading

M Goedhart, C Levy and P Morgan, “A Better Way to Understand Internal Rate of Return” McKinsey & Company, November 2015

Lecture 7


M Porter and M Kramer, “Creating Shared Value”, Harvard Business Review, Jan–Feb 2011.

Further Reading

S Benn The Future of Resources FutureAgenda 2015

Lecture 8


M J Lanning and E G Michaels, A Business is a Value Delivery System, McKinsey Staff Paper, No 41, June 1988.

Lecture 9


“The Factory of the Future” Boston Consulting Group December 2016

Further Reading

B Myerholtz, R Tevelson, E Wood “The Design-to-Value Advantage” Boston Consulting Group January 2016

R Giacobbe C Plummer K Renker AP Skerlavaj The Service Value Chain Accenture 2011

C Baur D Wee Manufacturing’s Next Act McKinsey June 2015

Getting the Most Out of Industry 4.0” McKinsey April 2016

Other resources

Students should familiarise themselves with publically available information on one of the following and be prepared to contribute to class discussion - BHP, Dominos, Qantas.

This includes:

Latest company reports and announcements (from ASX or company website) Recent and on going press coverage and commentary.

NOTE: do not approach the company’s directly. Part of the exercise is evaluating the use of publically available information.