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MANAGING PRODUCT VARIETY: AN INTEGRATIVE REVIEW AND RESEARCH DIRECTIONS

MANAGING PRODUCT VARIETY: AN INTEGRATIVE REVIEW AND RESEARCH DIRECTIONS Variety management has emerged as a crucial dimension of successful business practice. In this paper, I first provide a framework for managerial decisions about variety. Variety‐creation decisions determine the amount, type, and timing of end‐product variety, while variety‐implementation decisions focus on the design and operation of internal processes and a supply chain to support a firm's variety‐creation strategy. I organize variety‐related decisions into four key decision themes in variety creation: 1) dimensions of variety, 2) product architecture, 3) degree of customization, and 4) timing; and three key decision themes in variety implementation: 1) process capabilities, 2) points of variegation, and 3) day‐to‐day decisions. I describe each theme and review the relevant literature on each theme, with a focus on research that provides insight to problems faced in practice. Finally, I identify untapped avenues for future research that would be of value to the practicing manager, paying special attention to interdependencies among decision themes. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Production and Operations Management Wiley

MANAGING PRODUCT VARIETY: AN INTEGRATIVE REVIEW AND RESEARCH DIRECTIONS

Production and Operations Management , Volume 12 (1) – Mar 1, 2003

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
© 2003 Production and Operations Management Society
ISSN
1059-1478
eISSN
1937-5956
DOI
10.1111/j.1937-5956.2003.tb00199.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Variety management has emerged as a crucial dimension of successful business practice. In this paper, I first provide a framework for managerial decisions about variety. Variety‐creation decisions determine the amount, type, and timing of end‐product variety, while variety‐implementation decisions focus on the design and operation of internal processes and a supply chain to support a firm's variety‐creation strategy. I organize variety‐related decisions into four key decision themes in variety creation: 1) dimensions of variety, 2) product architecture, 3) degree of customization, and 4) timing; and three key decision themes in variety implementation: 1) process capabilities, 2) points of variegation, and 3) day‐to‐day decisions. I describe each theme and review the relevant literature on each theme, with a focus on research that provides insight to problems faced in practice. Finally, I identify untapped avenues for future research that would be of value to the practicing manager, paying special attention to interdependencies among decision themes.

Journal

Production and Operations ManagementWiley

Published: Mar 1, 2003

References