The shaping of inventory systems in health services: A stakeholder analysis
Although many studies have addressed the diagnosing and redesign of inventory systems in an industrial setting, the field of operations management seems to lack a thorough understanding of the process of shaping inventory systems in a health care setting. In this article, a contribution is made to fill this gap by exploring the process of reshaping a hospital inventory system of medicines by means of an exploratory case study. In doing so, we concentrate on the question how the outcomes of this process are affected by the different stakeholders involved. Our case study indicates that decisions made during this reshaping process are heavily influenced by the dynamics of the relationships and interactions between the stakeholders involved in the project. Based on our case study there are also some strong indications especially in a health care setting, the existence of multiple stakeholders having a multi-goal focus regarding the inventory system can have a strong influence on the outcomes of inventory projects. For project managers it is important to be aware of these characteristics and circumstances in order to help health service organisations to develop and use inventory systems more effectively.
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