ارزیابی پروژه های موجودی از دیدگاه ذینفعان: نتایج یک مطالعه تجربی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|20528||2014||10 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||8100 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Production Economics, Volume 118, Issue 1, March 2009, Pages 136–145
Based on the stakeholder salience theory, in this article five inventory projects are described and analysed. Results of the case studies presented in this article show that in practice the reshaping of inventory systems often is not a linear, well-defined process but emerge during the course of the project. Most importantly, our case studies clearly indicate that the outcome of inventory projects is often heavily influenced by the interests of different stakeholders. Apparently, decisions made during the course of inventory projects are only partly based on rationality and strongly influenced by negotiation behaviour, power relationships and opportunistic behaviour of the stakeholders involved. It seems to be important to be aware of the different roles stakeholders can play during the course of inventory projects. The results presented in this article may therefore help project managers to guide projects in the area of inventory management more effectively.
In practice, projects in the area of inventory management often relate to different management areas and cover several aspects like information, planning and control. Additionally, inventory management systems in many cases also encompass an organisational dimension. Allocating authorities and responsibilities as well as creating co-ordination mechanisms between the parties involved in the inventory system for instance, are some important decisions that have to be made during the process of (re)designing and implementing inventory systems (e.g. Bonney, 1994). For this reason, the (re)design and implementation of inventory systems can be considered as complex decision-making processes, including many different aspects which relate to different management areas and which are affected by several stakeholders involved in the project (e.g. Kisperska-Moron, 2003). Studies performed in the area of ERP-implementations suggest that different stakeholders often have different perceptions of the aim and scope of ERP-projects (Boonstra, 2006; Markus, 1983). Additionally, in many cases various stakeholders have different interests regarding the outcome of the project and it is for this reason that the outcome of projects in the field of ERP apparently is a mix of rational behaviour, political actions and negotiation behaviour of the stakeholders involved. Because the design and implementation of inventory systems is directly related to management areas like Production, Sales and Finance, there are some indications that no fundamental differences exist between ERP-projects and projects on inventory management. Similar to ERP-projects, projects in the area of inventory management are often characterised by different stakeholders being involved in the project, conflicting goals to be achieved and a dominant role of information technology (e.g. Frankel, 2006; Manthou et al., 1996). Interestingly, only few studies have addressed the question how the design and implementation of inventory systems is affected by different stakeholders. Moreover, only a limited number of empirical studies are available regarding the question how cultural differences, conflicting interests and power relationships of stakeholders influence the shaping and implementation of inventory systems (Janssen, 2005). Undoubtedly, having a clear understanding of how power and interest relationships between the stakeholders influence the outcome of inventory projects can be helpful to strategic and tactical decision-making processes on inventory systems. Additionally, this understanding can also be beneficial for the effectiveness of inventory projects. Our paper draws heavily on five case studies. Each of the case studies aimed at providing an in-depth understanding of the role and impact different stakeholders can have on the design and implementation process of an inventory management system. Starting from the notion that inventory management projects often include a planning, information and organisational dimension, a framework for assessing the influence of different stakeholders is presented. This framework is based on the stakeholder salience theory (e.g. Mitchell et al., 1997), and aims at describing and analysing the influence stakeholders may have on inventory projects. In the second part of the paper, the framework is confronted with practice. The case studies describe and analyse successive changes in the inventory system of five companies. In particular, the case studies try to reveal how actions based on the perceptions of the stakeholders have influenced the shaping of the organisation, information and planning aspects of the inventory system. The last sections of the paper elaborate on some of the main findings of the case studies. First of all conclusions are drawn about how different stakeholders can influence the outcomes of inventory projects. Secondly, conclusions are derived from our case data regarding the application and usefulness of applying a stakeholder perspective when analysing inventory projects.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Several conclusions can be drawn from our case studies. Most importantly, our case studies clearly indicate that the outcome of projects in the area of inventory management is often heavily influenced by the interests of different stakeholders. Apparently, decisions made during the course of inventory projects are only partly based on rational, well-defined, straightforward approach. Although exploratory in nature, our case studies also suggest that applying the stakeholder salience approach might be beneficial when trying to find explanations for the success or failure of inventory projects. The (re)shaping of inventory systems encompasses many different dimensions like the organisational setting of the inventory system, a planning and control aspect, an information infrastructure and a physical context. Clearly, all these areas can be subjected to negotiation behaviour between the stakeholders involved in the (re)shaping process. For project managers it seems to be important to be aware of the role stakeholders can play and taking the different views of stakeholders into account maybe be beneficial for projects in the area of inventory management. Moreover, good project management goes far beyond the technical aspects of redefining and reshaping inventory systems and apparently needs to include a thorough understanding of attributes like power, legitimacy and urgency as well. Although our study has been of an exploratory nature, some practical guidelines can be derived from our case studies. Clearly, these guidelines need to be studied in more detail because of the limited number of case studies we performed. Despite this lack of a solid theoretical background, addressing some main practical implications of our study seems to be worthwhile however, because it can frame future research in the area of inventory management. Moreover, the practical implications stated below can help managers and project leaders to handle inventory management projects more efficient and effective. To summarise, the following managerial implications seems to be worth mentioning (1) Often, inventory management projects include many different aspects. Defining the scope of the project carefully seems to be a point of importance therefore. Our case studies show that inventory management projects often include organisational elements as well as planning and control aspects. Moreover, inventory management projects often are of a multidisciplinary nature. Applying a too narrow scope as well as including too many aspects in the project is hazardous. Special attention needs to be paid to the project definition and the scope of the project therefore. (2) Because of the political dimension as well as of the different aspects related to inventory management, various stakeholders often have different perceptions of the inventory project. A careful assessment of these perceptions during the start-up of the project seems to be beneficial to a positive outcome of inventory projects. Our empirical study indicates that companies being aware of the political setting of inventory projects as well as of the different perceptions various stakeholders can have of inventory projects, apparently are more able to handle the project properly. Applying a stakeholder perspective during all phases of the project in other words seems to be a necessary but not sufficient condition for the success of inventory management projects. (3) Clearly, inventory projects often seem to encompass a political dimension. Being aware of this aspect can help top management to avoid unnecessary delays and side-effects of the project. As can be concluded from the case studies, in almost all companies severe project delays were caused by political processes and conflicting interests. Addressing these conflicting interests and making the political dimension of inventory management projects explicit probably will have a significant positive influence on the outcome of inventory projects. (4) The outcome of an inventory project often affects the interests of the stakeholders over time. This in itself can influence the course of the project significantly. Putting this interaction on the project agenda seems to contribute to a more effective and efficient project. It is suggested by our case studies that top management needs to be aware of the effects inventory management projects may have on the organisational setting of inventory management systems. Resistance to changing inventory management systems is often rooted in altering attributes and relationships between the stakeholders involved in the project. Top management should carefully assess these changes and address them explicitly during the course of the project therefore. (5) Inventory projects are often dynamic of nature due to the changing role of stakeholders. Handling this dynamic nature requires an explicit project policy in terms of involvement of stakeholders, communication and decision-making. Our research supports the idea that a stakeholder perspective needs to be incorporated in the project definition and implementation plan of inventory management projects. Moreover, the process dimension of inventory management is often to a great extent responsible for the ultimate success of the project and needs to be explicitly managed therefore. The above-mentioned managerial implications of our exploratory study are only a first step towards a design methodology for inventory management systems. Clearly, the challenge of developing this design methodology is to integrate content decisions with process knowledge like the stakeholder salience approach and game theory. Although our case studies have provided us with a more thorough understanding on how the process of (re)shaping inventory systems takes place in practice, further research is required for assessing inventory projects from a stakeholder perspective. Interestingly, only few studies have addressed the question how the design and implementation of inventory systems is affected by different stakeholders and only a limited number of empirical studies are available regarding the question how cultural differences, conflicting interests and power relationships of stakeholders influence the shaping and implementation of inventory systems. In particular, it seems to be worthwhile to explore the influence of stakeholders in different settings. We feel that by unravelling the determinants that influence the behaviour of stakeholders and by linking the area of project management, inventory management and organisational theory, a more profound integrated body of knowledge will emerge which hopefully will at the end also lead to more practical tools for inventory management.