Challenges and opportunities for UK sustainable steel supply chain
In the 1960s, the UK was ranked as the fifth world’s largest steel producer. However, the slow production in 2016 had dropped the UK to 21st in the world. Key challenges such as brutal international competition, high overhead costs, business rates, and energy prices have made many UK steel plants struggle to be cost-competitive. To make the UK steel supply chain to be more sustainable, this study examines key factors that drive sourcing and operational decisions at different echelons. In order to do this, a supply chain flow for steel plates was mapped for two end customers: shipbuilding and wind turbines. From the mapping, two firms were identified and interviewed. Findings from semi-structured interviews reveal that quality, lead time, and cost are the major factors that influence sourcing and operational decisions for both firms. The findings also highlight that traditional steel supply chain structure, poor integration, and unsustainable supply chain provide significant challenges but also opportunities for future UK steel to be a “vital” industry.
- Loughborough Business School
Published inProceedings of the 14th International Conference on Humanities and Social Sciences (ICHiSS 2022)
Source14th International Conference on Humanities and Social Sciences (ICHiSS 2022)
- AM (Accepted Manuscript)
Rights holder© The authors
Publisher statementThis paper was accepted for publication in the Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Humanities and Social Sciences (ICHiSS 2022).