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Business integration between manufacturing and transport-logistics firms

Research output: Working paperResearch


  • L 2006 05

    Final published version, 262 KB, PDF document

  • Department of Business Studies
  • CORAL - Centre for Operations Research Applications in Logistics
Purpose - This paper analyses how manufacturers and transport-logistics service providers (TLSPs) work together and integrate their business processes. The information technologies used to support the integration, the processes currently integrated, and the expected future integration, are searched. Design/methodology/approach - Six in-depth case studies were conducted among leading companies in the electrical, electronics, mechanical, food processing, and transport-logistics industries. The data was collected using comprehensive semi-structured interviews. Findings - Most of the firms are coupled electronically through EDI. The current business integration practices are primarily restricted to some sub-processes in three key SC processes: Customer service management, order fulfillment and backwards logistics. In the future the manufacturers want a better integration with the TLSPs, but at the same time, manufacturers would like to have the freedom of breaking the relationship, if the party does not fulfill the requisites and expectations. The future developments associated to the "commoditization" of TLSPs' services would reinforce this trend. Originality/value - This research has shed light on a relatively unexplored area related to the integration between manufacturers and transport-logistics firms. Our research has highlighted the complexity of the integration between the two echelons, and has helped to the identification of current areas of integration. This research has also contributed to understand how the integration occurs in real contexts, by uncovering with a high degree of detail, what manufactures do to integrate their business with the TLSPs.
Original languageEnglish
Place of publicationAarhus
PublisherAarhus School of Business, Department of Business Studies
ISBN (Electronic)8778821223
Publication statusPublished - 2006

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