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Evaluation of product customization strategies through modularization and postponement

  • Brun, Alessandro
  • Zorzini, Marta
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    This paper aims at investigating the relationships existing between postponement and modularization practices actually implemented by Italian companies and contextual factors mainly linked to product features. A multi-case study research strategy was adopted and statistical techniques applied for data analysis. Two main factors were identified (product/process customization and product/process complexity) and four customization strategies differing in terms of supply chain structure were analyzed (rigid, flexible, postponed and modularized). Three main categories of constraints were identified, which may lead to some exceptions compared to the prevailing approaches: delivery lead-time issues, contractual obligations and technical- and process-related factors.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6VF8-4TPF4D8-B/2/667cdee846c3da5badd3776f2869ab30
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Journal of Production Economics.

    Volume (Year): 120 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (July)
    Pages: 205-220

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:proeco:v:120:y:2009:i:1:p:205-220
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ijpe

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    1. Li, Jian & Edwin Cheng, T.C. & Wang, Shouyang, 2007. "Analysis of postponement strategy for perishable items by EOQ-based models," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(1), pages 31-38, May.
    2. Ray, Saibal & Jewkes, E. M., 2004. "Customer lead time management when both demand and price are lead time sensitive," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 153(3), pages 769-781, March.
    3. Janet Y Murray & Masaaki Kotabe & Albert R Wildt, 1995. "Strategic and Financial Performance Implications of Global Sourcing Strategy: A Contingency Analysis," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 26(1), pages 181-202, March.
    4. Muffatto, Moreno, 1999. "Introducing a platform strategy in product development," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 145-153, April.
    5. Ernst, Ricardo & Kamrad, Bardia, 2000. "Evaluation of supply chain structures through modularization and postponement," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 124(3), pages 495-510, August.
    6. Salvador, F. & Forza, C., 2004. "Configuring products to address the customization-responsiveness squeeze: A survey of management issues and opportunities," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(3), pages 273-291, October.
    7. van der Vlist, Piet & Hoppenbrouwers, Jurgen J. E. M. & Hegge, Herman M. H., 1997. "Extending the enterprise through multi-level supply control," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 35-42, November.
    8. Hicks, C. & McGovern, T. & Earl, C. F., 2000. "Supply chain management: A strategic issue in engineer to order manufacturing," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 179-190, April.
    9. Olhager, Jan, 2003. "Strategic positioning of the order penetration point," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(3), pages 319-329, September.
    10. Ulrich, Karl, 1995. "The role of product architecture in the manufacturing firm," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 419-440, May.
    11. Thyssen, Jesper & Israelsen, Poul & Jorgensen, Brian, 2006. "Activity-based costing as a method for assessing the economics of modularization--A case study and beyond," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 252-270, September.
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