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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|10658||2001||18 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Operations Management, Volume 19, Issue 5, October 2001, Pages 541–558
While our field has done commendable work putting forward new ideas in operations strategy, we have historically done a less effective job validating concepts after their introduction. Given this issue, we attempted to test and extend one of the most influential OM configurations — Miller and Roth’s [Management Science 40 (1994) 285] taxonomy of manufacturing strategies. Their taxonomy was longitudinally replicated with a newer set of North America Manufacturing Futures data as well as an entirely different global sample. Our replications partially supported Miller and Roth’s taxonomy of three strategy-types (Caretakers, Marketeers, and Innovators), but found no evidence of the two underlying dimensions of manufacturing strategy that they called market scope and differentiation. Interestingly, the Marketeers were replaced in the 1990s by a new strategy called Designers, and three other unique manufacturing strategies were identified in the global data.
In the late 1980s, Miller and Roth identified three manufacturing strategies — Marketeers, Caretakers, or Innovators — commonly used by North American manufacturers. Miller and Roth’s (1994) taxonomy has since become one of the most influential frameworks in the manufacturing strategy literature, and a check of leading OM journals (Goh et al., 1997) shows their work cited by over 40 subsequent studies. The Marketeers’ strategy is oriented towards reliability in the manufacturing process — especially in quality and delivery. The Caretakers’ strategy is uniquely preoccupied with low price over all other potential competitive capabilities. The Innovators’ strategy is characterized by an emphasis on quality and an avoidance of price competition. Miller and Roth’s taxonomy, combined with the emerging theory that top–down alignment of business strategy and competitive capabilities drives performance ( Hayes and Wheelwright, 1984, Hill, 1995 and Flynn et al., 1999), form two important cornerstones of our existing knowledge about the content of manufacturing strategy (Fig. 1).While we conceptualize manufacturing strategy in relatively static taxonomic terms, manufacturing and its strategic role seem to have steadily changed since Miller and Roth’s, 1987 study. In an accelerating trend throughout the 1980’s, many manufacturers grappled with quality and flexibility issues and adopted new approaches like SPC, JIT, and CAD/CAM to improve their competitiveness. Triggered by the recession in the early 1990s, manufacturers next reengineered their business processes and implemented ERP systems in an attempt to reduce costs and improve service. Beginning in the mid-1990s, growing global competition and a booming economy led many manufacturers to focus on improved delivery in their supply chains as well as price, new product development, and service. It has even led many formerly outstanding manufacturers to rely on outsourcing, thereby abandoning their own operations. There also seem to be some underlying differences, perhaps due to national culture, between manufacturers in various regions of the emerging global economy. These issues all raise important questions concerning our present knowledge about manufacturing strategy. Is Miller and Roth’s taxonomy still applicable in today’s dynamic global manufacturing environment? If not, is their taxonomy baseless, or can new findings update their model into a more robust framework?
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
7.1. Theory replication As laid out in the beginning of the paper, this study attempted to replicate the taxonomy of manufacturing strategy types put forward by Miller and Roth. Based on our findings, parts of their configuration were supported and others rejected for North American companies. Three clusters of strategy types appeared in each set of data, but the underlying dimensions along which the clusters differed in each survey shifted over time and differed across geographic regions. Consistent evidence emerged that two of Miller and Roth’s strategy types, Caretakers and Innovators, endured longitudinally from the 1980s through the 1990s with their core sets of competitive capabilities staying moderately to highly consistent. Meanwhile, the third, and largest, cluster appeared to change its competitive focus over time. One unanswered question is why there are three main manufacturing strategies. The theoretical explanation for Caretakers, Marketeers or Designers, and Innovators may rest in the links between Miller and Roth’s and Porter’s (1985) work. Porter argued that there are two sources of sustainable competitive advantage — low cost or differentiation — which lead to one of three generic business strategies: low price, differentiation, or focus. These generic business strategies coexist in an industry as companies battle for competitive advantage, which helps explain why multiple manufacturing strategies repeatedly showed up in both the North American and global data. According to Porter (1985), a company following a low price business strategy sets out to be a low cost producer by focusing on internal operations since on average 67% of all costs reside in manufacturing. Porter’s ideas, and the top–down OM theory of business and manufacturing strategy alignment (Fig. 1), therefore predict that if the business strategy is low price, then a manufacturer will relentlessly pursue low cost. This exactly parallels the Caretakers’ strategy. Porter’s work also explains why the Caretakers’ strategy is typically one of the smallest strategic groups, yet appears universally in the global data. In every industry there is room for only a few companies to exploit a low cost generic business strategy, but when successfully implemented, this becomes a potent source of competitive advantage. Conversely, companies embracing a differentiation business strategy seek to be unique along multiple dimensions that are widely valued by buyers (Porter, 1985). This closely fits the Marketeers’ approach in the 1980s and subsequently the Designers’ tactics in the 1990s. Porter argued that “the sustainability of a differentiation strategy is usually greatest if differentiation stems from multiple sources, rather than resting on a single factor…”. His theoretical argument closely parallels the empirical findings. Miller and Roth’s Marketeers’, and later our Designers, both aggressively pursued a wide variety of competitive capabilities in comparison to the Caretakers’ and Innovators. Notably, the Marketeers’ and Designers’ always attempted to dominate simultaneously the two underlying canonical dimensions of manufacturing strategy in the 1980s and 1990s (see Table 9). Porter’s ideas similarly clarify why the Marketeers’ strategy metamorphized during the 1990s into the Designers’ approach. A differentiation business strategy relies heavily on first recognizing what customers want and then choosing the best configuration of value-adding activities. Perhaps due to the maturation of electronics, communications, and information processing technologies, there was an explosion of interest in new product development (NPD) in the 1990s (Clark and Fujimoto, 1991, Rosenthal, 1992 and Eisenhardt and Tabrizi, 1995). As increasingly sophisticated customers demanded new product offerings, companies began to emphasize NPD capabilities. In many sectors the life cycle or clockspeed (Fine, 1998) of products shortened with almost every generation. “Schumpeter’s ‘gale of creative destruction’, blowing at full force, fosters shorter product life cycles and rapid product obsolescence” (Schilling and Hill, 1998, p. 68). Therefore, NPD capabilities emerged in recent years as an important competitive capability for achieving the necessary degree of product differentiation (Kessler and Chakrabarti, 1996) and hence the Designers’ strategic approach. Finally, a focus business strategy means choosing a narrow competitive scope within an industry in which to compete (Porter, 1985). A focus strategy exploits the special needs of buyers in certain segments, given that these segments are poorly served by broadly-targeted competitors who serve them along with a host of other customers. “The essence of focus is the exploitation of a narrow target’s differences from the balance of the industry” (Porter, 1985, p. 15). This aptly describes the Innovators’ tenacious pursuit of conformance and performance quality, as well as the Servers’ concentration on service and the Mass Customizers’ convergence on flexibility. Moreover, Porter argued that there is often room for several sustainable focus strategies in an industry, provided that the focusers choose different target segments which highlights why the Innovators’ strategy coexists with the Servers’ or Mass Customizers’ in the European and Asia-Pacific sub-samples. Interestingly, Porter (1985) also predicted that focus involves deliberately limiting potential sales volume, which helps explain why volume flexibility and broad product lines were consistently ranked as relatively low capabilities for Innovators, Servers, and Mass Customizers. We propose that it is appropriate to change the Innovators name to the Specialists. The new name is in better keeping with the notion of this cluster following a focus strategy. It is also more consistent with the observation that Specialists single-mindedly value performance and conformance quality over all other capabilities including price and flexibility. Additionally, given that Specialists place less importance on new product design in absolute terms than do Designers, it seems best to avoid the potential confusion between Designers and Innovators. 7.2. Theory extension While the three strategic groups and their core sets of competitive capabilities remained relatively consistent, the underlying dimensions that manufacturers compete on appear to shift relentlessly. In 1987, Miller and Roth interpreted the underlying strategy dimensions behind the total set of North American competitive capabilities as market differentiation and market scope. By 1994, these underlying dimensions evolved into the cost and after-sales service components of customer value. Just four years later, cost, design flexibility, and broad product lines were important underlying drivers of North American manufacturing strategy. These results indicate that manufacturing strategy is static or dynamic depending on the circumstances. Our longitudinal analysis suggests that while the Caretakers and Specialists were interested in “holding the course,” the Marketeers, cum Designers, seemed equally determined to change directions. The Caretakers’ approach is fundamentally a static manufacturing strategy with consistent anchors around low price, conformance quality, and dependable delivery. Similarly, the Specialists’ strategy is constant with predicted performance and conformance quality attacks combined with a retreat from price competition. The Marketeers appeared to have the only dynamic manufacturing strategy. Porter (1985) noted that while industry structure is relatively stable, it shifts over time, and this leads some companies to change. Not unlike chameleons, Marketeers, and subsequently Designers, seemed willing and able to shift the core elements of their manufacturing strategy to suit the business environment. These shifts, in turn, are what caused the underlying dimensions that all manufacturers compete on to regularly reshuffle. The intriguing question is why the Marketeers and Designers are the ones that keep changing. Was there something fundamentally wrong with their strategy that made it difficult for Marketeers (and likely next the same for the Designers) to permanently follow, or was something else driving their agenda? Differentiated manufacturing strategies like those of the Marketeers and Designers could simply be the hardest to get right, or perhaps given their highly customer-driven nature these strategies are destined to periodically evolve. Conversely, what is it about the Caretakers’ and Specialists’ strategies that predictably leads approximately half of all North American manufacturers and a sizable percentage of international firms to pursue these approaches? The next rounds of research need to concentrate in depth on only one of these strategy types at a time so that we can better understand the motivations behind each strategic group as well as their associated actions. Given their continual evolution, detailed studies of Designers are especially important. Evidence suggests that understanding the drivers of the Designers’ strategy may be a key to predict major trends in our field, since Caretakers and Specialists will presumably continue to emphasize the same capabilities on into the future. It also underlines the importance of going beyond classifying strategies to the issues of strategy implementation, a vital and relatively less researched domain. A second finding from this study is that there are varying concentrations of strategic groups as well as other manufacturing strategy types present around the world. Evidence suggests that while parts of Miller and Roth’s (1994) taxonomy apply globally, there are different ratios of clusters from those typically found in North American. A hypothetical North America sample can be expected to have approximately 50 percent that follow a differentiated strategy like the Marketeers or Designers, while roughly 30 percent are Specialists and the remainder are Caretakers. A global sample will probably contain few, (if any), Specialists and proportionally higher percentages of Designers and Caretakers. There are also at least three other manufacturing strategy types — Idlers, Servers, and Mass Customizers — followed around the world. This has some important implications for researchers studying international manufacturers and suggests that the North American model of manufacturing strategy should not be haphazardly applied to global data. It also raises the question of whether the new strategy types uncovered in this study are endogenous to each region, or if they will eventually diffuse to other parts of the world. As we did with Miller and Roth’s work, our global findings merit replication. While OM has made great strides in operations strategy research during recent years, without a fundamental commitment from other researchers to challenge and validate such results, our field’s future progress will certainly be more limited.