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Process benchmarking: a new tool to improve the performance of overhead areas

Ronald Gleich (European Business School, Oestrich‐Winkel, Germany)
Jaideep Motwani (Seidman College of Business, Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA)
Andreas Wald (European Business School, Oestrich‐Winkel, Germany)

Benchmarking: An International Journal

ISSN: 1463-5771

Article publication date: 30 May 2008




This paper aims to present an empirically developed and tested process to address the limitations in the literature on the lack of appropriate performance measures and benchmarks for recording activity and sub‐process related cost. The process presented integrates performance measures, process cost accounting tools and benchmarking.


A special type of research methodology called innovative action research is utilized to develop and test the new process benchmarking tool.


The new tool provides information not only about costs, but also about the following non‐financial indicators: process volumes, process‐related time (cycle times), and used capacity/resources of processes. Also, the tool can be used in a very economical way.

Research limitations/implications

The findings of the study are limited to the German mechanical engineering industry. Further research is needed for generalization of the proposed model.

Practical implications

Although, the mechanical engineering industry is used to demonstrate the proposed framework, it can be applied to other industries with a little modification.


A new, effective and efficient tool for cost reduction and performance improvement is developed and empirically tested.



Gleich, R., Motwani, J. and Wald, A. (2008), "Process benchmarking: a new tool to improve the performance of overhead areas", Benchmarking: An International Journal, Vol. 15 No. 3, pp. 242-256.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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