This paper aims to examine the relationship between the main decisions for designing distribution centers (DCs) and the contextual characteristics of the distribution networks.
Experts were surveyed and responses analyzed quantitatively through multivariate data techniques. This study considered four contextual characteristics that were deemed as influential for DC design: types of routes in the distribution network, quantity of DCs, distribution network levels and company size.
This paper evidenced which decisions are affected by each contextual characteristic encompassed in this study. This paper identified that the characteristic types of route in the distribution network must be carefully considered, as it had the greatest amount of associations with the decisions for designing a DC.
Despite its importance, most studies on design of DCs disregard the effect of the context in which DCs are inserted. This research provides arguments to support decision-making process of DCs design, increasing assertiveness of their planning. This work fulfills a literature gap by empirically examining the effect of contextual variables on the decisions related to DC design. Regarding practice, this paper addressed a fundamental issue for managers looking to design a DC, as it evidenced how contextual characteristics impact the decision-making.
Guimarães, M.C., Tortorella, G., Taboada, C.M., Godinho Filho, M. and Martinez, F. (2021), "Association between distribution centre design and contextual characteristics", Journal of Facilities Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JFM-12-2020-0090
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