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留学论文Case Study写作参考--英国论文代写范文精选

2015-11-13 | 来源:51Due教员组 | 类别:更多范文

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中石化股份有限公司成立于2000年2月。中国石化股份有限公司是一家综合性能源和石油化工公司,主要从事石油和天然气的勘探、开发、生产和销售;生产、销售、储存和运输成品、化纤、化肥;管道输送天然气和石油;进出口业务及代理业务的进出口贸易、天然气、石油产品、石油化工产品和技术等。
留学论文Case Study写作参考
In this chapter, a brief introduction of Sinopec Ltd is presented, a summary description about how the ERP system is being employed is covered.
1.1 Company background
Sinopec Ltd’s parent, Sinopec Group, is a super-large petroleum and petrochemical enterprise group, headquartered in Beijing, established in 1998 on the basis of the former China Petrochemical Corporation.
As a joint stock entity under Sinopec Group, Sinopec Ltd was established in February 2000. Sinopec Ltd is an integrated energy and petrochemical company, mainly engaged in exploration, exploitation, production and sales of oil and natural gas; the production, sales, storage and transportation of refined products, chemical fibres and fertilizers; pipeline transportation of gas and oil; the import and export business and agency business of import and export of oil, gas, oil products, petrochemical products and other commodities and technologies; research, development and applications of technology and information.
Besides this, Sinopec Ltd is the largest producer and supplier of oil products (http://www.51due.net/writing/including gasoline, diesel, aviation kerosene etc.) and major petrochemical products (intermediate petrochemical products, synthetic resins, synthetic fibre monomer and polymers, synthetic rubber and fertilizers) in China, and also China’s second-largest crude oil producer. Sinopec built up its company structure with the reference to the international model, establishing a standardized corporate governance structure and implementing a multidivisional management system of centralized decision-making, hierarchical management and specialized operation. There exist wholly-owned subsidiaries, holding and joint subsidiaries and branches, about 80 of them in total. They incorporate enterprises and business units of oil and gas exploration and development, oil refining, chemicals, sales, research and foreign trade. The organization structure of Sinopec Ltd is displayed below.
Even though Sinopec Ltd has the trend to be more and more internationalized and covers most segments of the oil supply chain, it can never disobey the government’s regulations due to its role of state-owned and can never go against the growth direction of China’s oil industry.
1.2 Oil industry in China
Since 1998, China’s petroleum companies have been restructuring. According to its practical operation and development, each company has gradually began the separation of core businesses and non-core businesses. On the basis of doing this, joint-stock subsidiaries succeeded to list. Through restructuring corporations, China’s petroleum enterprises achieved the integration of upstream and downstream petrochemical production, the integration of domestic and foreign trading, the integration of production and sales. It boosted the international competitiveness extremely by clearing the challenges of segmentation of the upstream and downstream, discrepancy of domestic and foreign trade.
As the market competition intensifies, the competition between enterprises has tended to evolve to the integral competition of the supply chain, while cooperation-competition between enterprises in the same supply chain has the trends to be deeper and further cooperation. The oil supply chain is characterized by huge demands of funds, complicated structure, high degree of close fitting etc. Meanwhile, with the rapid growth of the internet technologies, the new era has already been at hand in terms of enterprise management information system. Among them, ERP system is often studied and employed as one of the primary management tools.
1.2.1 Composition and characteristics of oil supply chain
According to the differences of production processes, the oil supply chain can be divided into three stages—supply, production and sales.
1. Supply stage mainly incorporates raw materials, equipment (procurement, loading, unloading, transportation, storage and distribution) and waste recycling etc.
2. Production stage mainly incorporates oil and gas exploration, transportation and warehousing in the process of production, the conveying of crude oil and sewage between oil production stations and united stations and conveying of crude oil between united stations.
3. Sales stage mainly incorporates sales of crude oil and natural gas and the distribution of petrochemical products and refined oil.
It can be concluded that in the entire oil supply chain oil exploration and production companies act the most significant role when making oil products. They are promoting raw material supplies and construction activities for upstream companies and also pushing downstream oil refinement, distribution system and customers. As a comprehensive corporation, Sinopec Ltd covers all those processes and segmented businesses with the expertise in oil refining.
1.2.2 Operation mechanism and process flow of oil supply chain
Chinese scholars often argue that petroleum supply chain should be established on the basis of value-added processes. According to the value-added process of petroleum products Li & Wu (2004) proposed a system suitable for supply chain of oil industry, including raw material supplies, crude exploration, transportation, refining, petrochemical and distribution etc.[28]Zheng (2005) argued that from the perspective of the characteristics of the petroleum industry, the supply chain system itself can be formed from the exploration of oil and natural gas to storage, transportation, refinement and sales, and a supply chain management model of universal applicability for petroleum companies came up. [29]
Therefore, in this project, a general oil supply chain is supposed to comprise the subsequent nods: petroleum machinery manufacturing company, petroleum exploration and development company (oil field), petroleum transport company, petroleum refining and chemical company, product sales company, distribution company and end customer. There exists information flow between each nod besides those material flows.
When information gets feedbacks between each nod step by step, a closed information flow is presented. On the basis of the above analysis, this project will simplify the structure of petroleum supply chain as figure 5.2 shown below.
Figure 5.2 General structure of petroleum supply chain
Due to the special national conditions, China’s petroleum industry has some particular characteristics. The framework above only applies to China after being amended.
Firstly, from the angle of the state, the impacts of the government penetrate into every link in the supply chain.In detail, the exploitation of crude oil, conveying, laying pipelines and other activities are intervened or coordinated by the government. Most significantly, the central government masters the rights to determine the prices of major petroleum products, which is meant to affect distributors and end customers directly. Moreover, the three leading petroleum companies are all state-owned enterprises including the Sinopec Group. Simply speaking, the oil supply chain is actually dominated by the government.
Secondly, from the angle of the enterprise, these three leading petroleum groups are being built up through the merger of small and medium-sized companies. Subsidiaries and branches have beneficial conflicts to some extent, so group headquarters play an important role in the coordination process.
Therefore, the government’s regulatory function must be taken into consideration. In China, the government’s influences over the petroleum supply chain embody the supervision and coordination of the interests of various enterprises within the supply chain. Through issuing a variety of policies, the government intervenes corporate activities and harmonises multiplex interests to maintain the stable and efficient operation. In summary, the effects of the government are reflected in the process of guiding information flow, of course, the effects are predominant. While group headquarters control the supplies of equipment and piping and intervene their subsidiaries and branches. To sum up, this project upgrade the general model of petroleum supply chain into a more appropriate more for China.
Figure 5.3 Petroleum supply chain structure of China
1.3 Cost structure model of China’s petroleum supply chain based on ERP system
1.3.1 Brief introduction of modelling
In collaboration with the features of petroleum supply chain, based on the review of relevant research literature, this project studied the structure of petroleum supply chain and designed a three-dimensional cost management model of petroleum supply chain. Within this design, this project focuses on the each production sector significantly as independent production links, in order to weaken the effects from group headquarters which would be upper to merely provide production equipment and coordinate the result relationship within a supply chain. By doing this, the boundary of companies could be broken. In the meantime, the design of this model took the influence of political factors on petroleum supply chain into consideration and depicted thoroughly the cost management of China’s petroleum supply chain by means of a three-dimensional model.
1.3.2 Composition and management of China’s petroleum supply chain
According to classical division method, the cost can be divided into direct cost and indirect cost. Direct costs are costs which are directly and accurately accountable to specific products. Indirect costs occur as auxiliary production and cannot be accountable directly to certain objects, but are split into costs of various production or overheads. Indirect costs include lots of items, according to Manuel, Seuringand Christian (1999)[30], indirect costs are comprised of activity-based (process) costs and transaction costs. Therefore, the costs of China’s petroleum supply chain can be similarly divided into direct costs, activity-based costs and transaction costs, three of which go through value-added value chains (oil and gas phase, refinery and petrochemical phase and product distribution phase) of China’s petroleum industry, and are also affected by the government and group headquarters.
1.3.2.1 Direct costs of node enterprises within a petroleum supply chain
Direct costs of node enterprises within a petroleum supply chain are costs which occur in the process of producing petroleum and can be directly accurately accountable to specific petroleum products.
According to the accounting, direct costs of China’s petroleum supply chain incorporate direct material costs, maintenance costs and direct labour costs.
According to the value-added process of petroleum products, direct costs of China’s petroleum supply chain incorporate: direct labour costs of exploration, development and exploitation of gas and oil, equipment costs, land costs, materials costs; for the refinery process, purchase costs of crude oil, equipment costs, direct labour costs; costs for setting up distribution centre and direct labour costs and equipment for operating a distribution centre etc.
1.3.2.2 Activity-based costs of node enterprises within a petroleum supply chain
Activity-based costs of node enterprises consist of procurement costs, transportation costs, delivery costs, administrative expenses and so on. Activity-based costs require to be allocated to items as follows because not involving in products costs: costs of auxiliary equipment, labour, secondary materials, energy and equipment maintenance when exploring, developing and exploiting; costs of transportation and storage of crude and costs of auxiliary equipment, auxiliary labour, energy and maintenance when refining; costs of transportation and storage of petrochemical products and costs of auxiliary labour, classification, packaging, piloting when distributing products.
1.3.2.3 Transaction costs of node enterprises within a petroleum supply chain
Transaction costs of node enterprises originate from mutual trade-offs between enterprises from petroleum supply chain and others with the set-up of mutual trust relationship. Chronologically, transaction costs can be categorized into searching for partners prior to a transaction, signing a contract in trading and enforcing the contract after trading. Specific items consist of information integration costs, negotiation costs and manpower costs etc.
1.3.2.4 Summary
There are several problems in all these three aspects of cost management of China’s petroleum supply chain.
In terms of direct costs, enterprises will not upgrade assets on a large scale in a short time, and it takes a chronic effort to promote oil field development, technological breakthrough and international standing for the government and enterprises. In terms of transaction costs, the government are always playing a positive role in reducing transaction costs, but further reducing transaction costs requires mutual compromise and long-term running-in. In such a condition, activity-based costs are the most manageable. Petroleum enterprises can effectively reduce the activity-based costs, thereby reducing overall costs, through internal and external logistics management, introducing cyclic economy theory and adjusting institution setting.
1.3.3 Establishment of three-dimensional cost structure model of China’s petroleum supply chain
Product, relationship and cost form the basic framework of cost theory in supply chain, which aim to analyse the direct costs, activity-based costs and transaction costs. All these costs depend on products’ features to show relative importance. As to the products with a short life cycle (production cycle is shorter than R&D cycle), transaction costs and activity-based costs are a little higher, resulting in investment risk. Conversely, the transaction costs and activity-based costs of the products with longer life cycle are a little lower.
Studies have shown that the value chain of petroleum industry encompass six processes: petroleum exploration, development, transportation, refining, chemical products and distribution to the end customers. They can be simplified into four processes in accordance with its production features: exploration and development, oil exploitation, refining and product distribution. Also, both the government and the group headquarters have impacts on the establishment and operation of China’s petroleum supply chain to diverse extent. Therefore, the three-dimensional cost model of petroleum supply chain for China is designed to introducing the above factors into the Stefan Seuring model. It is shown as follows:
Figure 5.4 three-dimensional cost model of China’s petroleum supply chain
In the three-dimensional model, the organic integration of cost dimension, production dimension and relationship dimension does not only reflect the composition of three types of costs from each production link of petroleum supply chain profoundly, but also is better to display the significant status of the government and group headquarters in the process of establishing petroleum supply chain. Therefore, an overall diagnosis of cost features of China’s petroleum supply chain can be conducted.
1.3.3.1 Cost dimension
The gist of cost dimension can be divided into direct cost, transaction cost and activity-based cost as mentioned above. Generally speaking, there are not definite boundaries among them, but all of them abide by a rule that transaction costs transfer to direct costs in four decision regions.
1. First decision region: structural region between products and networking. Most occurrences are transaction costs.
2. Second decision region: product design region of supply chain. Frequent occurrences are activity-based costs and transaction costs.
3. Third decision region: production network establishment region. With the activity-based costs occurred, direct costs increase largely.
4. Fourth decision region: process optimization region of supply chain. Most are direct costs while little transaction costs exist.
Three types of costs include:
①. Direct cost: expenses that are attributed to and directly contact with product costs, and compose product objects in the process of manufacturing products, including raw materials, labour costs, and equipment construction fees. They are mainly determined by prices of raw materials and labour, can be measured and controlled across enterprises, and form in the process optimization region of supply chain. On the premise of the current structure of supply chain and industry being accepted, the fourth decision region mainly focuses on interface optimization between each nod enterprise and process optimization of production, in order to figure out weaknesses for reducing direct costs.
To be more specific, there are three parts for direct costs: direct consumption of raw materials (oil semi-finished products from upstream suppliers); depreciation fees of machinery, rental fees and so on; direct labour costs (employees’ wages and welfare in the process of development, refining, production and sales).
②. Activity-based costs: expenses, which are intrigued by activities not directly relevant to production, occur in the processes of management activities of manufacturing, distributing products to customers. Activity-based costs are restricted within an enterprise, formed due to organisational structure but spread among different departments. They primarily arise from product design region of supply chain and production network establishment region. In product design region of supply chain, R&D costs can do nothing but be allocated to all products, dependent on enterprises themselves. Providing enterprises outsource such cost strategically, a portion of R&D will inevitably transfer to suppliers to shorten R&D process, save resources, reduce a part of activity-based costs and boost transaction costs. In production network establishment region, preliminary work is difficult to complete once production varieties become multiplex and complex. Then it demands of building up a network comprised of suppliers.
To be specific, there are four parts for activity-based costs: purchaser’s wages, welfare and travel expenses, loading and unloading charges, depreciation fees of relevant equipment and so on; various short-range transportation fees across production departments; distributor’s wages and welfare, equipment depreciation, various insurance premiums and office expenses; wages and welfare for management staff in production workshop, depreciation of production and management equipment, plant depreciation, equipment maintenance costs, relevant quality inspection fees etc.
③. Transaction costs: stem from mutual coordination and cooperation between core enterprises and other companies within a supply chain, accountable to the search of partners, contract signing and implementation of contracts. They include expenses of communicating with suppliers and clients and dealing with information, aiming to coordinate, control and adapt to business relationship of each party.
To be specific, there are three parts of them: costs before trading (mainly in search of upstream production department); costs in the middle of trading; costs after trading (aiming to guarantee performing the trade).
1.3.3.2 Production dimension
This project detaches each production department in a group company according to the reality of China, so that each production department becomes a varieties of individuals to be studied. Thus group headquarters are primarily responsible to provide infrastructure for production departments, meanwhile responsible to coordinate supply chain relationships among them. In return, the profits submitted by production departments can be considered as the costs paid for acquiring infrastructure like machines, pipelines etc. Under this premise, this project proposes a value-added process of the petroleum supply chain. It can be seen as below:
Figure 5.5 product value added process of the petroleum supply chain
In figure 5.5 the production of petroleum products go through exploration, development and exploitation to become crude oil, which becomes petroleum products after refining. Some parts of these products are delivered to distributors directly in forms of gasoline, kerosene and diesel, while the other parts undergo further processing to become plastics, bitumen and some other petroleum by-products, and then delivered to end customers through distributors.
Production dimension goes through the entire product value-added processes of the oil industry. The production of every product or intermediate one causes direct costs and activity-based costs, while transaction costs are created from suppliers to core enterprises and from core enterprises to customers. Therefore, all these three types of costs production dimension go through every aspect of production of petrochemical products.
1.3.3.3 Relationship dimension
In China government of all levels has a huge impact on the production of petroleum supply chain, group headquarters are controlling a large number of industrial resources, however with high independence of each subsidiary. As a result, the relationship dimension must be added in the analysis of China’s supply chain cost. From the figure 5.5, the supply chain established by each petroleum production entities is subject to dual influences from the government and group headquarters.
The government influence over the petroleum supply chain is rather extensive. Usually it facilitates the construction of petroleum supply chain, stabilize normal operation, even sprawl across company boundaries and integrate advantageous resources in order to create a supply chain system across groups.
However, the relationships among production departments are not robust in such a system built under the influence of government. Comparatively group headquarters take a stronger controlling. Because group headquarters provide related infrastructure and coordinate internal supply relations among different departments, they can force the internal relations among production departments unbreakable, and make supply chain structure extremely stable. But the drawback is apparent that the binding effect is ranged within production departments of a group.
Affected by the government and group headquarters, China’s supply chain structure maintains stable with highly symmetric information, which greatly reduce transaction costs in every production process. But on account of the intervention of government and group headquarters, administrative commands replace the market operation and even interfere with pricing of petroleum products. It might cause resources not to be configured best, reduce overall efficiency of petroleum supply chain and bring about indirect costs.
1.3.4 Information Integration of ERP System in Cost Management of Petroleum Supply Chain
At present, large petroleum groups have built up ERP system and completed information integration within separate subsidiaries, but when it comes to communication of information within and across enterprises, ERP have not yet shown its value. In this sub-chapter, the information integration of ERP system on cost management of petroleum supply chain will be briefed.
1.3.4.1 Application of ERP System
Due to some constraints of traditional management such as scattered management and repetitive labour, ERP system is necessarily introduced as a superior form of information management system. ERP system is not only capable of integrating the intra-department information of direct costs, activity-based costs and transaction costs, but is capable of providing senior managers with information support.
①. Intra-department information integration of direct costs. ERP system is introduced into cost accounting to work for businesses which need a large number of data processing, simple calculation and numerous repetition. For internal departments, ERP system enables business operators to share data for each application, especially in terms of direct cost management.
②. Activity-based cost integration. ERP system divides production processes into several activities according to the order of production, conducting one-by-one statistical accounting on costs incurred in the process of production. In addition to direct production cost report, some other auxiliary information can be obtained such as return time, product transportation and storage location.
③. Inter-enterprise process integration. In recent years, the internal and external environment faced by enterprises has been continually changing. They do not only improve the internal functioning, but also need to establish efficient and collaborative relations among customers, suppliers and transporters. Current ERP system has had the capacities to fully implement inter-enterprise cost management. Information system of cost management breaks through limitations of individual enterprises with the help of rapid development of the Internet, connecting with suppliers, distributors and customers. Thus cost forecasting, planning, controlling and analysis can be implemented on a large scale in order to reduce costs and enhance competitive advantages.
④. Decision-making support for executives. Once it moves on to ERP system docking stage, all information for enterprises become unblocked. It can not only help other decision-makers control internal production and operation situation accurately and fully, provide information of cost generation and knowledge support, but also brings about smoother communication channel for enterprises within the same supply chain, which allows accounting information, production logistics information and decision information to circulate bidirectionally and achieve seamless docking, therefore a close and intimate cooperation relationship forms between different enterprises.
1.3.4.2 Representation of ERP System in the Three-dimensional Cost Model of China’s Supply Chain
The biggest difference between cost control of ERP system and of a unitary system lies that ERP realizes the integration with other subsystems and boosts the accuracy and consistency of cost information.
①. In terms of production dimension. The ERP system was originally applied to the management of single subsidiaries in China’s petroleum supply chain. However, at the beginning of information management the information system of each subsidiary was scattered and used separately. Although it made information sharing thoroughly and flexibly within a single process, the communication of information between systems was quite costly. Complete connection could not be achieved within a single company, let alone inside a group.
In order to change this disadvantage, petroleum group boldly reconstructs a set of ERP information management system, which will not only be able to complete existing work under previous system, but also achieve real-time interconnection between systems, instantaneous information upgrades and knowledge support for management staff. Therefore, it can significantly enhance the production efficiency and save costs, which represents the influence of ERP systems over the production dimension.
②. In terms of cost dimension. ERP system has separate influences on direct cost, activity-based cost and transaction cost of each process. Firstly, ERP system can advise feedbacks of inputs instantaneously and accurately, which have been constructed including infrastructure, facilities, labour and raw materials, so that operators have knowledge of information of direct costs at any time. Secondly, accessible and effective to assist operators in getting information of activity-based costs. In detail, the time/place when/where a large amount of activity-based costs occur would help manage relevant information to make preparations in advance. Thirdly, share the transaction information and save transaction costs. Considering the stable collaboration between enterprises within a supply chain with the support of the government and headquarters, there’s no need to redesign trading rules for every transaction issue. Therefore, regular trades are conducted through information system directly and two parties share portions of core information to save money of manpower and material resources, so transaction costs are lowered a great deal.
③. In terms of relationship dimension. As the government and group headquarters influence significantly the settings, operation and integration of supply chain in China, and ERP system helps the government and group headquarters obtain instantaneous and precise information, they have the ability to manage and control the petroleum supply chain more effectively.
1.4 Summary
In conclusion, as the market competition intensifies, the competition between enterprises has tended to evolve to the integral competition of the supply chain, while cooperation-competition between enterprises in the same supply chain has the trends to be deeper and further cooperation. The oil supply chain is characterized by huge demands of funds, complicated structure, high degree of close fitting etc. Meanwhile, with the rapid growth of the Internet technologies, the new era has already been at hand in terms of enterprise management information system. Among them, ERP system is often studied and employed as one of the primary management tools. Therefore, the costs of China’s petroleum supply chain can be similarly divided into direct costs, activity-based costs and transaction costs, three of which go through value-added value chains (oil and gas phase, refinery and petrochemical phase and product distribution phase) of China’s petroleum industry, and are also affected by the government and group headquarters.


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