Purpose – The purpose of this paper is three pronged. First, to review the existing critical success factors (CSF) literature in the context of supply chain management (SCM). Second, to analyze the occurrence frequency of every possible CSF in SCM literature. Third, to identify the “vital few” and the “useful many” CSF that are harmonized across the SCM field. Design/methodology/approach – A time-specific and term-sensitive literature review technique is undertaken to generate a list of possible CSF in SCM. The review yielded 55 papers, but only 26 empirical CSF papers were selected for analysis as the reliability and validity of the factors had been rigorously tested. Consequently, a Pareto analysis approach was applied to trace the CSF frequency of occurrence in SCM literature. By performing a Pareto analysis, this present study is able to identify and categorize the “vital few” and “useful many” CSF that are consistent throughout various fields of SCM. The review and results are tabulated and a Pareto diagram has been constructed to provide a summary of findings. Findings – Out of the 26 selected empirical papers, 25 potent CSF in SCM literature have been extracted. From the Pareto analysis, nine CSF represent 80.68 percentage of occurrence which is regarded as the “vital few” CSF in SCM. The remaining 16 CSF represent 19.32 percentage of occurrence and is regarded as the “useful many” CSF in SCM. The nine “vital CSF” are immensely important, because in order to achieve supply chain and operation success, one must recognize the few vital factors that are responsible for the larger impact onto the industry compared to the other 16 “useful many” CSF. Practical implications – The study offers some sense of assistance to SCM managers in highlighting the vital few CSF that matter most, regardless of their nature of SCM fields. Thus, saving their energy, time, and resources in determining the critical pieces of information. For academicians, this study provides a platform for future SCM CSF research and the results could aid researchers in developing the research instrument. Originality/value – This study is the first attempt to apply Pareto analysis for SCM CSF studies and critically analyzing a wide range of SCM CSF literature. The result could allow supply chain managers to focus on the internal factors, as it could implicate the external factors, and is vital for sustainable supply chain operation, plus, it could stimulate potential researcher opportunities in linking SCM CSF and firm performance.
EuroMed Journal of Business – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jul 6, 2015