Improving supply chain integration using a workload control concept and web-functionality

Stevenson, M and Hendry, L (2007) Improving supply chain integration using a workload control concept and web-functionality. Production Planning and Control, 18 (2). 142 - 155. ISSN 0953-7287

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The use of the Internet within supply chain management (SCM) and manufacturing planning and control (MPC) is growing rapidly. To date, this technology has been embraced to the greatest extent by large companies and rather standardised planning tools. In contrast, tools designed for customised industries have received less attention, while small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) lag behind in their adoption of the Internet. Workload control (WLC) is a MPC concept designed for complex production environments and is particularly attractive to SMEs with limited financial resources. This paper explores the implications of enhancing an existing decision support system (DSS), based on a WLC concept, with web-functionality in order to improve both the practical applicability of the tool and the integration of the supply chain. This extension is based on evidence gathered from the literature, a case study company and the requests of a repeat customer of this company. Ten propositions for future research emerge from this process. These propositions cover issues such as: (1) the potential for interference with internal planning processes when web-functionality provides customers with the opportunity to monitor the progress of jobs; (2) the potential for reduced uncertainty during customer enquiry management when more impersonalised contact encourages bid rejection information to be shared; and (3) the potential effect of information sharing on the frequency of customer queries regarding the likely due date adherence of jobs.

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Journal Article
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Production Planning and Control
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11 Jul 2011 18:20
Last Modified:
21 Nov 2022 21:15