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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2009

Nuran Acur and Chris Voss

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1052

Abstract

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 29 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2004

Nuran Acur and Umit Bititci

The aim of the paper is to demonstrate how business process‐based approach (PROPHESY) facilitates integration of resource‐based and market‐based approaches to strategy…

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5698

Abstract

The aim of the paper is to demonstrate how business process‐based approach (PROPHESY) facilitates integration of resource‐based and market‐based approaches to strategy management. The paper begins by presenting resource‐based and market‐based strategy management approaches generally. It extends earlier research by examining the linkages between markets and resources as practised by three case study companies representing a cross‐section of the manufacturing industry. It continues with a discussion on the reasons behind the choice of the criteria used for cross case analysis. Although the results are exploratory, they provide a comparative analysis of how market‐based strategies could relate and integrate with resource‐based strategies through business processes.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 24 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2006

Nuran Acur and Linda Englyst

Today, industrial firms need to cope with competitive challenges related to innovation, dynamic responses, knowledge sharing, etc. by means of effective and dynamic…

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7984

Abstract

Purpose

Today, industrial firms need to cope with competitive challenges related to innovation, dynamic responses, knowledge sharing, etc. by means of effective and dynamic strategy formulation. In light of these challenges, the purpose of the paper is to present and evaluate an assessment tool for strategy formulation processes that ensures high quality in process and outcome.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review was conducted to identify success criteria for strategy formulation processes. Then, a simple questionnaire and assessment tool was developed and used to test the validity of the success criteria through face‐to‐face interviews with 46 managers, workshops involving 40 managers, and two in‐depth case studies. The success criteria have been slightly modified due to the empirical results, to yield the assessment tool.

Findings

The resulting assessment tool integrates three generic approaches to strategy assessment, namely the goal‐centred, comparative and improvement approaches, as found in the literature. Furthermore, it encompasses three phases of strategy formulation processes: strategic thinking, strategic planning and embedding of strategy. The tool reflects that the different approaches to assessment are relevant in all phases of strategy formulation, but weighted differently. Managerial perceptions expressed in particular that learning from experience should be accommodated in strategic thinking. The strategic planning stage is mainly assessed based on the goal‐centred approach, but cases and managerial perceptions indicate that the need for accurate and detailed plans might be overrated in the literature, as implementation relies heavily on continuous improvement and empowerment. Concerning embedding, key aspects relate both to the goal‐centred and improvement approaches, while the comparative approach appears to play a more modest role, related to monitoring external changes and enabling the organization to respond adaptively.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed assessment tool is general in the sense that it does not take into account relationships between the strategic context and the assessment of strategy formulation processes. The investigated cases indicate that contingencies matter, and call for further investigation of particular applications. The present research maintained a focus on formal and relatively top‐down‐oriented strategy formulation processes.

Practical implications

The integration of three different strategy assessment approaches has been made to obtain a holistic, multi‐perspective reflection on strategy formulation. Such reflection is assumed to enable managers to proactively evaluate the potential outcome and performance of their chosen strategy.

Originality/value

The originality of the paper lies in the combination and compilation of multiple approaches to strategy assessment, which draws on a wide range of literature, and in the proactive perspective on strategy assessment. Furthermore, the validity of the proposed assessment tool or checklist is based on multiple sources of empirical evidence.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 26 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2005

Bjørge Timenes Laugen, Nuran Acur, Harry Boer and Jan Frick

Research on best practices suffers from some fundamental problems. The problem addressed in the article is that authors tend to postulate, rather than show, the practices…

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7887

Abstract

Purpose

Research on best practices suffers from some fundamental problems. The problem addressed in the article is that authors tend to postulate, rather than show, the practices they address to be best – whether these practices do indeed produce best performance is often not investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

This article assumes that the best performing companies must be the ones deploying the best practices. In order to find out what are those practices, the highest performing companies in the 2002 International Manufacturing Strategy Survey database were identified, and the role 14 practices play in these companies was investigated.

Findings

Process focus, pull production, equipment productivity and environmental compatibility appear to qualify as best practices. Quality management and ICT may have been best practice previously, but lost that status. E‐business, new product development (NPD), supplier strategy and outsourcing are relatively new, cannot yet be qualified as, but may develop into, best practice. Four other practices do not produce any significant performance effects.

Research limitations/implications

There are four limitations to the research: Incompleteness of the set of practices tested: lack of insight into the effects of interaction between practices and the way in and extent to which they were implemented; good explanatory but poor predictive power; and lack of contextuality.

Originality/value

Taking the position that best practice must be what best performing companies do, the paper is useful for managers using benchmarking to review the design and performance of their manufacturing system, and for scholars engaged or interested in best practice studies.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 25 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2003

Nuran Acur, Frank Gertsen, Hongyi Sun and Jan Frick

This paper intends to contribute to a better understanding of manufacturing strategy content by describing and analysing the content and formalisation of manufacturing…

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4421

Abstract

This paper intends to contribute to a better understanding of manufacturing strategy content by describing and analysing the content and formalisation of manufacturing strategies, and by exploring the relationships between the formalisation of manufacturing strategy, business/competitive objectives, improvement goals, and action plans. The study is based on the data from the third International Manufacturing Strategy Survey, which was conducted in more than 20 countries. The analysis shows that in companies with a formal strategy competitive priorities, improvement goals and action programs are significantly better aligned in companies without such a strategy. This finding is encouraging for operations management scholars, as it suggests that after 30‐odd years Skinner's missing link has been re‐discovered, and it supports OM practitioners in their ongoing battle to safeguard the position of manufacturing in the corporate debate.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 23 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2009

Federico Caniato, Raffaella Cagliano, Matteo Kalchschmidt, Ruggero Golini and Gianluca Spina

In 2003 the authors investigated the level of adoption of e‐business by manufacturing firms in Europe. Four company strategies were identified based on different extents…

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4265

Abstract

Purpose

In 2003 the authors investigated the level of adoption of e‐business by manufacturing firms in Europe. Four company strategies were identified based on different extents of adoption of internet‐based tools for interaction with customers and/or suppliers. The purpose of this paper is to replicate, those analyses using the new release of the International Manufacturing Strategy Survey (IMSS) IV. These new results are compared with previous ones in order to determine whether modeling previously described in the literature remains valid.

Design/methodology/approach

Data collected in Europe through IMSS III and IV are used. In particular, companies are clustered according to e‐business practices adopted in supply chain management (SCM) and the degree of adoption of e‐business between the two editions of the research is compared. A longitudinal analysis is also conducted using data from companies participating in both editions of the survey.

Findings

It is shown that the fundamental aspects of the modeling approach earlier proposed in the literature remain valid, with a higher average level of adoption of e‐business tools in the more recent edition of the study. However, the four‐cluster model is shown to be no longer valid. In the more recent dataset, three clusters emerge. They are characterized by different levels of adoption of e‐business, balanced between e‐commerce and e‐procurement. The longitudinal analysis shows that the firms participating in both editions of the research have changed their strategy, coherently to what the overall sample does.

Research limitations/implications

This paper is focused on the assembly industry and only part of the sample is strictly longitudinal. Further research is needed to relate e‐business strategy with performance and to distinguish among the various tools available.

Practical implications

This paper also shows that the adoption of e‐business is increasing among small and medium firms, even if the practices adopted by any individual company remain limited. Results show that a cautious adoption is preferable to more radical implementation, since some firms have actually reduced their initial efforts to adopt e‐business.

Originality/value

The literature currently lacks extensive, longitudinal studies on e‐business strategies in SCM. The paper shows how the concept has rapidly evolved recently, and it modifies models that are proposed only a few years ago in the face of new data.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 29 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2005

Raffaella Cagliano, Nuran Acur and Harry Boer

The paper aims to address the question of how and how often companies change their manufacturing strategy in the medium and long run, thus addressing a lack of evidence in…

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2654

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to address the question of how and how often companies change their manufacturing strategy in the medium and long run, thus addressing a lack of evidence in the literature.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper explores the movements made by companies among four manufacturing strategy configurations drawn from the literature (market‐based, product‐based, capability‐based and price‐based configuration). Analyses are based on three longitudinal samples from the International Manufacturing Strategy Survey (IMSS) database.

Findings

Results show that while strategic configurations are rather stable, many companies do indeed change strategy and identifies which patterns of change prevail. Product‐based strategy is the most‐widely spread and most stable strategy. Capability‐based competition is the rising star. The market‐based strategy is struggling and price‐based competition is on its way out.

Research limitations/implications

The main limitation is the small size of longitudinal samples, leading to tentative propositions for further testing.

Practical implications

No strategic configuration appears to be the final “maturity” target for manufacturers. Companies select their configurations according to life cycle of the organization and market competition.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to fill a lack of longitudinal evidence of strategic change and flexibility of manufacturing companies.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 25 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2009

Anna Moses and Pär Åhlström

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the nature of functional involvement in the cross‐functional make or buy decision process.

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4043

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the nature of functional involvement in the cross‐functional make or buy decision process.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on literature within the areas of cross‐functional make or buy decision processes as well as cross‐functional process research in general. The empirical part of the paper is a longitudinal and in‐depth case study, where the data are collected using interviews, documentation and observations. The data are analyzed using chronological patterns.

Findings

Findings indicate a changing pattern between close collaborative integration during decision‐making phases and more interaction‐focused integration during data‐gathering phases. The benefits of this integration pattern mainly lay in the effective use of resources combined with increased decision quality.

Research limitations/implications

The results are based on a large manufacturing company that produces complex products. It can be suggested that the scene researched by the authors may be common for companies in the same environment. However, it is a limited sample and future research would benefit from investigating different environments to establish whether the results are context‐specific or not.

Practical implications

Five phases are found in the make or buy decision process where resources are used differently. Also, different functions have different roles during these phases in order not to drain resources.

Originality/value

The paper helps clarify how functions integrate and use resources during different phases of the make or buy decision process and the cross‐functional benefits and effects. A conceptual model is developed that explains the effect of functional involvement during different types of integration.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 29 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 22 June 2010

Chee Yew Wong and Nuran Acur

This article develops a theoretical framework to investigate the interaction and coordination of decision‐making processes in a supply chain with multiple and…

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2523

Abstract

Purpose

This article develops a theoretical framework to investigate the interaction and coordination of decision‐making processes in a supply chain with multiple and inter‐dependent suppliers and customers.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper presents three longitudinal case studies on the decision coordination processes between a European toy supplier and three retailers.

Findings

The case studies found different mental models, decision‐making behaviours, coordination behaviours and ordering behaviours even though the toy supplier and the three retailers observed quite the same material flow behaviours. The study found explanations for these diverse behaviours by analysing the mental models and decision‐making behaviours of each involved party.

Originality/value

The findings explain the conditions which lead to undesirable mental models and decision‐making behaviours which affect the coordination of decisions among supply chain members.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2009

Claudio Dell'era and Roberto Verganti

The increasing importance that customers give to the aesthetic, symbolic and emotional value of products leads companies to approach the product design as a means to…

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3052

Abstract

Purpose

The increasing importance that customers give to the aesthetic, symbolic and emotional value of products leads companies to approach the product design as a means to create a competitive advantage. Considering that competing through design involves the development of new product languages and signs, the ability to develop products that convey innovative meanings and values to users becomes a critical factor of success. Each product has a particular language and meaning on which companies can innovate. This kind of innovation requires access to dispersed and tacit knowledge about socio‐cultural trends and emerging phenomena in society, which lends itself to a discourse on design. Designers can support companies by accessing, interpreting and exploiting the knowledge about emerging socio‐cultural models and latent market needs. The purpose of this paper is to explore and analyse the characteristics of designer portfolios developed by innovative and successful companies.

Design/methodology/approach

An empirical study is conducted on the designers of 91 Italian furniture companies to analyse the contribution of designers to company innovation and to consumer preferences. By analysing 630 different collaborations between companies and designers over the development of 1,722 products, the paper explores different strategies adopted by companies to collaborate with designers. Specifically, the authors compare three dimensions of the designer portfolio that are developed by different groups of companies: size, internationalisation and multi‐nationality. The authors use the analysis of variance formula to identify characteristics of designer portfolios that were significantly distinct in their achievement of innovation and consumer interest.

Findings

The empirical results suggest interesting managerial applications in terms of modalities to access designers: for example, innovative companies often collaborate with designers coming from different nations. One possible explanation for this is that the combination of different approaches and cultural frameworks may allow innovators to capture stimuli and emerging phenomena in socio‐cultural contexts far from their territorial boundaries, consequently developing innovative product languages and meanings.

Originality/value

This is one of the few quantitative studies that analyze the relationships between collaborative innovation strategies and performances.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 29 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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