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Article
Publication date: 5 June 2017

Ruth Dede Adikorley, Lori Rothenberg and Aaron Guillory

The purpose of this study is to explore Lean Six Sigma (LSS) project and program success in the textile and apparel industry. This paper presents depictions of LSS…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore Lean Six Sigma (LSS) project and program success in the textile and apparel industry. This paper presents depictions of LSS implementations and the resulting economic impact for a textile company.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach consisting of a single descriptive case study and project document reviews was used. This method provided an in-depth view into what LSS means for one medium-sized global textile company and how it has proven important to the company’s success.

Findings

Three successful projects, two on changeover time reduction and one on metal contamination, were completed. Additional findings from this study suggest that strategic partnerships with other high-performing companies and storytelling are two critical success factors. Also, it is critical for management to convey a clear vision for LSS that can be operationalized within a company for successful deployment of LSS textile projects.

Research limitations/implications

The findings from this case study cannot be generalized.

Originality/value

The literature on LSS in small- and medium-sized businesses is limited. The literature on the use of LSS in the textile and apparel industry is even more limited. This paper shows various processes within the textile complex where LSS has been deployed successfully, yielding economic impacts. By using qualitative methods, the value of strategic partnerships, storytelling and a vision was seen.

Details

International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, vol. 8 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-4166

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2017

Ruth Dede Adikorley, Kristin Thoney-Barletta, Jeff Joines and Lori Rothenberg

The purpose of this study is to examine why Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is not currently a major player in producing apparel for the US market and determine if SSA is likely…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine why Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is not currently a major player in producing apparel for the US market and determine if SSA is likely to become one because of several opportunities that the region offers, including relatively low labor wages, an ample labor force and duty-free access to the USA through the 10-year renewal of AGOA.

Design/methodology/approach

In-depth interviews were conducted with eight high-level executives in apparel sourcing and trade agencies to obtain their views on the opportunities and challenges of sourcing in SSA in relation to other major apparel sourcing regions. A descriptive analysis of the qualitative data was used to answer three research questions.

Findings

The findings reveal that SSA is a competitive region to source from, because of low labor wages and the duty-free benefits through AGOA. However, several challenges hinder a significant increase in sourcing from SSA. The executives recommended that for SSA to be a significant force in the global apparel market, vertical supply chains should be developed, where raw materials like fabric are sourced from within the country/region and SSA governments should become more involved in business environment improvements.

Originality/value

At present, there is limited academic literature on sourcing and supplier selection in Africa, particularly in textile and apparel sourcing in SSA. Based on interviews from high-level executives engaged in the sourcing decision-making process, this study reveals the benefits, challenges and opportunities for sourcing apparel from SSA countries.

Details

Research Journal of Textile and Apparel, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1560-6074

Keywords

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