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Perceptions about benchmarking best practices among French managers: an exploratory survey

Faizul Huq (Ohio University College of Business, Athens, Ohio, USA)
Marie‐Helene Abbo (Groupe ESC Pau, Pau, France)
Ziaul Huq (University of Nebraska at Omaha College of Business, Omaha, Nebraska, USA)

Benchmarking: An International Journal

ISSN: 1463-5771

Article publication date: 11 July 2008




The purpose of this study is to present a discussion on the most commonly accepted benchmarking norms in the USA, the lessons learned from benchmarking experiences and see how they are translated to benchmarking projects by French managers.


A survey questionnaire is developed, based on the ten‐step Xerox benchmarking process, to identify the perceived and/or experienced benchmarking best practices amongst French managers. Large, medium and small companies are surveyed and managers who have participated in or are in the middle of a benchmarking project contributed to the information in developing the conclusions about the perceived best practices, steps and pitfalls for a benchmarking project in French companies.


The survey result showed uniformity amongst French managers from large companies and their opinion on what is important in bringing a benchmarking project to a successful conclusion. There was however lack of uniformity of opinion when it came to what is important in the benchmarking process amongst French managers from companies of different size.

Research limitations/implications

Caution should be exercised when interpreting these findings since the paper only used data from an exploratory survey of French managers from companies of varying sizes. The limitation of the study is that the conclusions are applicable to French managers only. In order to compare them one would need survey data, using the same questionnaire from managers in other countries.

Practical implications

Indeed, the authors' findings provide a persuasive argument for what French managers consider important in a benchmarking project. It provides valuable insights into the lessons learned from the years of benchmarking experiences and how these experiences have been translated across cultures.


Based on the French experience with the benchmarking process, the critical success factors for benchmarking were identified. Importance of each step in the benchmarking process varies amongst companies, critical issues are company and industry specific. In order to compete successfully in today's global marketplace, the French managers recognize the importance of benchmarking, although their perceptions of the important steps in the process vary depending on company size.



Huq, F., Abbo, M. and Huq, Z. (2008), "Perceptions about benchmarking best practices among French managers: an exploratory survey", Benchmarking: An International Journal, Vol. 15 No. 4, pp. 382-401.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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