The purpose of this paper is to analyze whether the influence of manufacturing flexibility on firms’ exploration/exploitation differs between firms that possess Certified Quality Management Systems (CQMS) and firms that do not.
The authors analyze a sample of 231 Spanish manufacturing firms, 131 of which had received some form of Quality Certification. The data were collected through a structured telephone questionnaire addressed to company CEOs. The relationships are modelled using regression equations, including interaction terms, in order to test for the existence of a moderating effect.
The results show that certified companies exploit their own abilities, whereas uncertified firms tend to explore new knowledge. The authors also justify the importance of manufacturing flexibility for both options, exploration and exploitation.
The limitations of this research include the fact that the authors study a variety of forms of certification, not only ISO, and the fact that all companies belong to the same country.
This study contributes to developing empirical knowledge of the benefits of CQMS in the firm.
The paper develops a new model to improve manufacturing flexibility and Quality Management.
The authors gratefully acknowledge the funding and collaboration of the Ministry of Science and Innovation and the European Union. Project I+D ECO2010-15885.
Tamayo-Torres, J., Barrales-Molina, V. and Nieves Perez-Arostegui, M. (2014), "The influence of manufacturing flexibility on strategic behaviours: A study based in Certified Quality Management Systems", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 34 No. 8, pp. 1028-1054. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJOPM-04-2012-0172
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