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The role of digitalized information sharing for flexibility capability utilization: lessons from Germany and Japan

The role of digitalized information sharing for flexibility capability utilization: lessons from... Information-sharing and flexibility are considered to be major tools for risk mitigation and supply chain resiliency. However, less light has been shed on the role of information-sharing as an enabler to utilize flexibility capabilities before and after supply chain disruptions. The aim of this paper is to provide indications on how digitalized information-sharing (DIS) enhances flexibility capability utilization.Design/methodology/approachThe methodology follows a qualitative approach, including 31 transcribed semi-structured interviews with supply chain experts in Germany and Japan.FindingsThe findings indicate that DIS supports flexibility capability utilization in pre- and post-disruptive supply chain management. First, the enhancement of estimated transport time accuracy supports rapid supplier and transport mode adjustment. Second, while the effects of DIS in manufacturing are limited without pre-existing flexibility capabilities, steady internal and external DIS utilizes exciting manufacturing flexibility to cope with disruptions beyond production. Third, track and trace technologies enhance the value of shared data and allow flexibility in the form of demand-oriented distribution, but companies unable to adopt technologies can still enhance flexibility capabilities with DIS using the existing infrastructure.Originality/valueThis paper highlights the essential role of digital information-sharing for flexibility utilization in supply chain risk management. While existing studies engaged with flexibility and information-sharing in supply chain risk management, this study contributes by emphasizing digital information-sharing as a key triggering enabler for flexibility in pre- and post-disruptive phases. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management Emerald Publishing

The role of digitalized information sharing for flexibility capability utilization: lessons from Germany and Japan

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
0960-0035
DOI
10.1108/ijpdlm-01-2020-0030
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Information-sharing and flexibility are considered to be major tools for risk mitigation and supply chain resiliency. However, less light has been shed on the role of information-sharing as an enabler to utilize flexibility capabilities before and after supply chain disruptions. The aim of this paper is to provide indications on how digitalized information-sharing (DIS) enhances flexibility capability utilization.Design/methodology/approachThe methodology follows a qualitative approach, including 31 transcribed semi-structured interviews with supply chain experts in Germany and Japan.FindingsThe findings indicate that DIS supports flexibility capability utilization in pre- and post-disruptive supply chain management. First, the enhancement of estimated transport time accuracy supports rapid supplier and transport mode adjustment. Second, while the effects of DIS in manufacturing are limited without pre-existing flexibility capabilities, steady internal and external DIS utilizes exciting manufacturing flexibility to cope with disruptions beyond production. Third, track and trace technologies enhance the value of shared data and allow flexibility in the form of demand-oriented distribution, but companies unable to adopt technologies can still enhance flexibility capabilities with DIS using the existing infrastructure.Originality/valueThis paper highlights the essential role of digital information-sharing for flexibility utilization in supply chain risk management. While existing studies engaged with flexibility and information-sharing in supply chain risk management, this study contributes by emphasizing digital information-sharing as a key triggering enabler for flexibility in pre- and post-disruptive phases.

Journal

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Mar 6, 2021

Keywords: Digitalization; Flexibility; Information sharing; Resilience; Risk mitigation; Supply chain risk; Visibility

References