Title

Are Companies Continuously Improving their Supply Chain?

Abstract

Lean enterprise, six sigma, and other productivity improvement techniques use continuous improvement; however, it appears continuous improvement is haphazardly applied or even lacking in companies, especially across the supply chain. This research identifies key continuous improvement characteristics in regard to leadership, learning, and collaborating that need to be executed more effectively. This research was conducted among a population of 174 different automotive companies in nine industries. Only 7.1% of companies with less than 100 to 249 employees used lean or six sigma. Participants using lean or six sigma struggled with extending initiatives to include suppliers (56%), as well as other areas that support building a competitive supply chain. While initial gains from these productivity improvement techniques are beneficial, the long-term impact of continuous improvement across the supply chain will offer these companies sustainable market power.

Department(s)

Engineering Management and Systems Engineering

Second Department

Psychological Science

Keywords and Phrases

Automotive companies; Continuous improvements; Lean enterprise; Productivity improvements; Six Sigma; Sustainable markets; Industry; Productivity; Supply chains; Work simplification; Supply chain management; Continuous improvement; Lean enterprise; Six sigma; Supply chain management

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

10429247

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version

Citation

File Type

text

Language(s)

English

Rights

© 2010 American Society for Engineering Management, All rights reserved.


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