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Article

Britta Søgaard, Heather Dawn Skipworth, Michael Bourlakis, Carlos Mena and Richard Wilding

This paper aims to explore how purchasing could respond to disruptive technologies by examining the assumptions underlying purchasing strategic alignment and purchasing…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore how purchasing could respond to disruptive technologies by examining the assumptions underlying purchasing strategic alignment and purchasing maturity through a contingency lens.

Design/methodology/approach

This study uses a systematic review across purchasing maturity and purchasing strategic alignment literature. This is supplemented with exploratory case studies to include practitioners’ views.

Findings

This research demonstrates that neither purchasing maturity nor purchasing strategic alignment are suitable approaches to respond to disruptive technologies. Purchasing maturity does not allow purchasing managers to select relevant practices. It also shows no consideration of any contingencies, which practitioners highlight as important for the selection of practices. Purchasing strategic alignment includes the company strategy as a contingency but does not provide any practices to choose from. It does not include any other contextual contingencies considered important by practitioners. The findings indicate that linking the two research streams may provide a more suitable approach to responding to disruptive technologies.

Research limitations/implications

This research demonstrates the requirement to develop a new approach to responding to disruptive technologies, by linking purchasing maturity and purchasing strategic alignment to contextual contingencies. This is a currently unexplored approach in academic literature, which refutes the generally accepted premise that higher maturity unilaterally supports a better positioning towards technological disruption. This research also highlights a requirement for practitioners to shift their approach to “best practices”.

Originality/value

This is the first research to systematically review the relationships between purchasing maturity and purchasing strategic alignment. It adds to contingency theory by suggesting that purchasing maturity models can support the achievement of strategic alignment. Also, future research directions are suggested to explore these relationships.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

Keywords

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Article

Henrico Plantinga, Hans Voordijk and André Dorée

While the need for strategic alignment in public management has been recognized, there is a lack of conceptual clarity to support its application in practice. Focusing on…

Abstract

Purpose

While the need for strategic alignment in public management has been recognized, there is a lack of conceptual clarity to support its application in practice. Focusing on the specific field of public procurement, this paper clarifies and illustrates how the concept of strategic alignment can be applied when strategizing the public procurement process.

Design/methodology/approach

The current literature on strategic alignment in public procurement is critically reviewed to identify ambiguities that hamper its application in practice. Based on this review, an analytical framework is developed that conceptualizes strategic alignment as that between the procurement instruments used in a sourcing project and the corresponding higher-level strategies. The framework is empirically illustrated by applying it in a case study that reconstructs the procurement strategy for an innovation project

Findings

Strategic alignment in the public procurement process can be demonstrated by identifying, explicating and logically linking reasoning and trade-off decisions on competing priorities across multiple levels and dimensions of strategy

Originality/value

Although creating alignment between policy and public procurement practice is generally held to be important in the public management literature, it is only discussed on high levels of abstraction. This paper provides clarity by investigating alignment in greater detail.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 33 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

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Article

Robert Johnston and Panupak Pongatichat

The aim of this paper is to explore an important but relatively uncharted territory: the actual functioning of performance measurement systems (PMS) in their…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to explore an important but relatively uncharted territory: the actual functioning of performance measurement systems (PMS) in their organisational context. The objective of the paper is to document the ways in which managers go about aligning operational measures with their organisation's strategy in practice.

Design/methodology/approach

This research adopts an interpretive multiple‐case approach in order to gather rich data on the strategies used in managing operational PMS. Data were collected from detailed interviews with managers and supervisors in four government agencies.

Findings

The expectations were that the operations managers would adjust their performance measures to support the changes in strategy. This was not the case. All the interviewees employed one or more tactics to cope with the tensions between strategy and performance measures. The ten tactics identified are collected into three strategies; do‐nothing strategy, pseudo‐realigning strategy, and distracting strategy.

Research limitations/implications

This paper casts some doubt on the practice, rather than the principle, of strategy‐aligned performance management. More work needs to be carried out to ascertain how other, both for profit and public sector, organisations deal with these tensions in practice.

Practical implications

From a practitioner point of view it raises the question as to whether senior managers are exerting sufficient control over the alignment issue or providing suitable tools, methods or indeed incentives to bring alignment about.

Originality/value

The paper highlights a gap between theory and practice and suggests that the way to ensure implementation of “modern management methods,” might be to deal firstly with the issues of relevance, timeliness, structure, integration, and symmetry.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 28 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Article

Dirk J. Primus and Euthemia Stavrulaki

This study applies a product centric view to examine three product development (PD) decisions that relate to a new product and its supply chain (SC): product design…

Abstract

Purpose

This study applies a product centric view to examine three product development (PD) decisions that relate to a new product and its supply chain (SC): product design, sourcing strategy and product delivery strategy (PDS). The purpose of this paper is to expand the understanding of alignment decisions in this area to include concurrent compatibility between product design, SC strategy and market conditions.

Design/methodology/approach

The study leverages existing theory to identify the key dimensions of alignment between product design, SC strategy and market conditions in a conceptual model. Using survey data from 124 new PD projects collected from various industries, the authors then empirically test the impact of multiple alignment decisions on new product introductions (NPIs) performance.

Findings

The results suggest that one specific project-level design parameter (interface intensity) is a key alignment dimension for product design decisions. Specifically, the authors find that alignment between interface intensity and sourcing strategy, as well as between interface intensity and clock-speed improves NPI performance. Additionally, the authors find evidence that three-way alignment between PDS, interface intensity and market volatility will benefit NPI performance.

Research limitations/implications

Because the study is cross-sectional and conducted at the project level, future work should continue this line of inquiry with longitudinal exams and across a families of development projects.

Practical implications

The findings inform the deliberate management of the PD/SC interface and provide managers with quantitative benefits of concurrent alignment decisions.

Originality/value

This study identifies and addresses important deficits in the understanding of concurrent alignment between product design, SC strategy and market conditions.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. 28 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

Keywords

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Article

Anabel Gutierrez, Jorge Orozco and Alan Serrano

There are significant differences in terms of resources and expertise available between small and medium enterprises and large organisations. These differences may be…

Abstract

Purpose

There are significant differences in terms of resources and expertise available between small and medium enterprises and large organisations. These differences may be significant for assessing and attaining alignment between IT (information technology) and business strategies. Thus this paper aims primarily to identify whether the differences between small, medium and large enterprises have an impact on the way they perceive strategic alignment.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on data collected from 104 participants, five attributes are ranked for each of the following alignment factors: communication, competency/value measurement, governance, partnership, architecture and scope, and skills. This paper reviews and compares their relevance according to organisational size (SMEs and large organisations) and planning integration strategies (independent, sequential and simultaneous).

Findings

The results from this survey suggest that, when ranking these factors, there are not significant differences among SME and large organisations. It was found, however, that the ranking of these factors has a positive correlation with the degree of IT/business planning integration applied in the organisation.

Research limitations/implications

This study contributes to an understanding of the complex dynamic of aligning IT with business objectives and the implications for SMEs where few models have been tested. The results suggest that SMEs and large organisations perceived alignment in a similar way, however, there are significant differences in the way SMEs and large organisations implement their planning integrations strategies.

Practical implications

Although current studies in alignment have not explored in much detail the differences between large and small organisations most of the theories around alignment can be applied to small and medium organisations with more confidence. Additionally, the analysis strongly suggests that companies following a simultaneous planning integration can improve the chances to make better use of IT, and thus attain better levels of alignment.

Originality/value

This study contributes towards the study of alignment in SMEs, which is currently not very much explored. It also raises awareness about the importance of developing IT and business strategies together.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 22 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

Keywords

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Article

Lynne Bowker

This paper aims to investigate the potential benefits and limitations associated with aligning accreditation and academic program reviews in post-secondary institutions…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the potential benefits and limitations associated with aligning accreditation and academic program reviews in post-secondary institutions, using a descriptive case study approach.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper describes two Canadian graduate programs that are subject to both external professional accreditation and institutional cyclical reviews, as they underwent an aligned review. The process was developed as a collaborative effort between the academic units, the professional associations and the university’s graduate-level quality assurance office. For each program, a single self-study was developed, a single review panel was constituted, and a single site visit was conducted. The merits and challenges posed by the alignment process are discussed.

Findings

Initial feedback from the academic units suggests that the alignment of accreditation and program reviews is perceived as reducing the burden on programs with regard to the time and effort invested by faculty, staff and other stakeholders, as well as in terms of financial expenses. Based on this feedback, along with input from reviewers and program evaluation committee members, 14 recommendations emerged for ways in which an aligned review process can be set up for success.

Practical implications

The results suggest that aligned reviews are not only resource-efficient but also allow reviewers to provide more holistic feedback that faculty may be more willing to engage with for program enhancement.

Originality/value

The present study contributes to the existing body of knowledge about conducting aligned reviews in response to external accreditation requirements or institutional needs. It summarizes the potential benefits and limitations and offers recommendations for potential best practices for carrying out aligned reviews for policymakers and practitioners.

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Article

Bingfeng Bai, Junjun Gao and Yang Lv

This paper aims to assess the links among these demand chain constructs by conducting a full-scale systematic review of all demand chain management (DCM) literature reviews

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to assess the links among these demand chain constructs by conducting a full-scale systematic review of all demand chain management (DCM) literature reviews published in marketing and operations management journals from 2013 to 2020. Marketing and supply chain management are central to DCM; thus, this study briefly describes the contributions to knowledge provided by the papers contained in this issue. In addition, some additional areas of research in which the DCM can be gainfully deployed are outlined.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper makes a systematic literature review of 70 literature samples by means of content analysis and comprehensive analysis. These approaches guarantee a replicable, rigorous and transparent research process and minimize researcher bias. The analytical categories required for the content analysis are defined along the constructs of marketing and supply chain management.

Findings

As can be expected, this paper highlights the key role of the two constructs in the strategy of DCM. In this light, the paper claims to provide evidence of a link between the constructs of marketing and supply chain management. This paper reviews the connotation of DCM through literature review, distinguishes the relationship between DCM and supply chain management from a strategic management perspective and discusses the future research direction.

Research limitations/implications

This study assesses the link between the strategic constructs of marketing and supply chain management through research embedded in literature reviews, pinpointing research gaps and potential future research directions in the field. Contributing to DCM theory building, a thorough review provides qualitative comparison of the link between marketing and supply chain management.

Originality/value

Although some literature reviews have been conducted in the past on the constructs of DCM, no full review of literature reviews aiming to test a strategic theoretical link in the demand chain related to supply chain and marketing.

Details

Management Research Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8269

Keywords

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Article

Chia‐An Chao and Aruna Chandra

This study seeks to examine the impact of owner's knowledge of information technology (IT) on business and IT strategic alignment, as well as on IT use in the small firm…

Abstract

Purpose

This study seeks to examine the impact of owner's knowledge of information technology (IT) on business and IT strategic alignment, as well as on IT use in the small firm context, using the resource‐based view as a theoretical foundation.

Design/methodology/approach

A random sample of 217 small manufacturers and financial services firms in the USA answered a two‐page survey containing questions pertaining to the company's business strategies, the extent IT supported each business strategy, types of IT used, and the level of owner's IT knowledge.

Findings

Owner's knowledge of IT was found to be a significant predictor of IT strategic alignment, as well as adoption of traditional IT and internet technologies, while controlling for differences in firm attributes (size, age, industry affiliation, and strategic focus).

Practical implications

Small firm owners are well advised to seek ways of improving their knowledge of IT, integrating IT use in firm‐level business planning, as well as reexamining their business strategy and IT use to detect and correct misalignments, if any.

Originality/value

From the resource‐based view, the owner's IT knowledge is a critical resource that cannot be easily codified, hence less susceptible to competitive erosion, since it is embedded in the owner's tacit knowledge and expressed in the unique but complementary use of IT in support of the firm's strategic goals. This study confirmed small firm owner's knowledge of IT as an important, knowledge‐based capability and a vital component of business‐IT strategic alignment.

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Article

Kedwadee Sombultawee and Sakun Boon-Itt

This paper aims to study a scale development and validation process for an integrative marketing–operations alignment (MOA) theory. This theory was derived from several…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study a scale development and validation process for an integrative marketing–operations alignment (MOA) theory. This theory was derived from several distinct theories that have attempted to explain the interaction between marketing and operations functions of manufacturing organizations. An initial qualitative research and literature review identified five antecedents to the MOA construct (decision coordination, reward system, information exchange, leadership strategy and performance evaluation) as well as two outcomes (customer orientation and competitor orientation).

Design/methodology/approach

The scale was developed and validated using successive testing processes including exploratory factor analysis, confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling (LISREL).

Findings

The outcome of the research is a tested and validated model of MOA. While more work needs to be done to test and potentially extend the theory, this research has produced a basic functional model of the MOA process.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations include target populations, choice of industry and geography and cross-sectional time horizon of the study.

Originality/value

This study represents an original contribution to the organizational theory literature, as it provides both a sound theoretical basis and a validated measurement model for the proposed theory of MOA. While this research does draw on existing models, it is more comprehensive and theory-based than the existing models.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 35 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

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Article

S. De Haes and W. Van Grembergen

Many thought leaders are promoting information technology (IT) governance and its supporting practices as an approach to improve business/IT alignment. This paper aims to…

Abstract

Purpose

Many thought leaders are promoting information technology (IT) governance and its supporting practices as an approach to improve business/IT alignment. This paper aims to further explore this assumed positive relationship between IT governance practices and business/IT alignment.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper explores the relationship between the use of IT governance practices and business/IT alignment, by creating a business/IT alignment maturity benchmark and qualitatively comparing the use of IT governance practices in the extreme cases.

Findings

The main conclusion of the research is that all extreme case organisations are leveraging a broad set of IT governance practices, and that IT governance practices need to obtain at least a maturity level 2 (on a scale of 5) to positively influence business/IT alignment. Also, a list of 11 key enabling IT governance practices is identified.

Research limitations/implications

This research adheres to the process theory, implying a limited definition of prediction. An important opportunity for future research lies in the domain of complementary statistical correlation research.

Practical implications

This research identifies key IT governance practices that organisations can leverage to improve business/IT alignment.

Originality/value

This research contributes to new theory building in the IT governance and alignment domain and provides practitioners with insight on how to implement IT governance in their organisations.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 22 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

Keywords

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