Integration of the Sales Force: An Empirical Examination
This article develops and tests a model of integration of a marketing function, personal selling. The model, derived from transaction cost analysis as developed principally by Williamson, is formulated as a logistic function, which is estimated with data from the electronic components industry. As expected, integration is associated with increasing levels of asset specificity, difficulty of performance evaluation, and the combination of these two factors. Contrary to the transaction cost model, neither frequency of transactions nor interaction of specificity and environmental uncertainty is significantly related to integration. The transaction cost model improves significantly upon the fit of a simple model relating integration to company size alone. These results suggest that for studying transactions of this kind, it is fruitful to view the firm as a governance structure.
Volume (Year): 15 (1984)
Issue (Month): 3 (Autumn)
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