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The impact of inter-organizational management control systems on performance: a longitudinal case study of a supplier relation in automotive

Listed author(s):
  • Pernot, E.
  • Roodhooft, F.

    (Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School)

This study investigates whether appropriate management control design of supplier relations is associated with good performance. Although management control systems (MCSs) are found to be contingent on situational characteristics, it remains unclear whether this contingency fit contributes to performance. In order to illustrate the existence and refine the dynamics of the fit-performance association, we perform a longitudinal case study of an exemplary automotive manufacturer-supplier relation that was subject to considerable change and severe performance difficulties in the course of time. As proposed, case findings show that if the supplier is incapable of dealing with changed contingencies, a MCS contingency misfit is associated with poor operational performance. However, this misfit is only temporal, as the manufacturer adapts the MCS to fit the changed supplier relation and regain operational performance. In addition, the longitudinal data suggest that trust and basic formal control (i.e. formal control continuously exercised under all circumstances) are complements, while trust substitutes for extra formal control (i.e. formal control set up on top of basic formal control). Finally, our data indicate a timing difference in the substitutive relation. The building up of extra formal control proceeds gradually, while the lowering happens almost immediately.

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Paper provided by Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School in its series Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School Working Paper Series with number 2008-17.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: 10 Oct 2008
Handle: RePEc:vlg:vlgwps:2008-17
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