The purpose of this paper is to explore the applications of postponement strategy in the textile and apparel industry, with a particular focus on the supply chain structure, relationships and enabling activities supporting postponement strategy across the supply chain.
For this research, a case study approach, supported by structured interviews, was adopted. The purpose was to explore the application of postponement with the objective of gathering considerable data from an organization or multiple organizations to develop the clearest possible picture of the phenomenon.
The nature of product, downstream demand and the supply chain structure impacts the choice of postponement strategy. Companies operating with manufacturing and logistics postponement share data across their supply chain extensively, while companies adopting purchasing postponement work towards enhancing suppliers’ capabilities and fostering relationships across their supply chains.
The case study method limitations include lack of rigor and statistical generalization, small sample size and convenience sampling and lack of establishment of causal relationship. However a thorough study design and process can make case‐based research more rigorous and reliable, but caution still needs to be exercised while applying findings on differing scenarios.
The case studies depict the application of postponement and the enabling supply chain structures. Previous studies have either looked on the organizational perspective or supply chain perspective with regards to the power and dependence attributes. These cases look at the interaction routines and structures among the supply chains.
Chaudhry, H. and Hodge, G. (2012), "Postponement and supply chain structure: cases from the textile and apparel industry", Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, Vol. 16 No. 1, pp. 64-80. https://doi.org/10.1108/13612021211203032Download as .RIS
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