Quality measurement in the supply chain




Espinoza, Omar
Buehlmann, Urs
Bond, Brian

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DEStech Publications, Inc.


Supply Chain Management is the integration of business processes along the value chain, from suppliers to end customer. Performance measurement of these processes has so far received little attention from researchers and practitioners. This paper reports the results from a study of a discrete products supply chain and measures its performance. In particular, a case study was conducted on a wood product supply chain, with a focus on quality performance measurements. The research question was whether current practices were consistent with end customer satisfaction and if improvements were possible. Interviews with quality management personnel and onsite evaluations were conducted at all stages of the supply chain, and a new visualization tool was developed. Quantitative and qualitative analysis tools were used to evaluate current practices. Opportunities for improvement were found in external integration and information sharing between supply chain partners. Also, a need for true measures of supply chain performance measures was identified. A 5-step process to develop such metrics is proposed, and an application example is provided. The proposed supply chain performance measurement system uses Six Sigma measures and facilitates collaboration between supply chain partners and provides information that allows focusing on improvement projects more efficiently.


Paper presented at the Proceedings of the 24th International Conference on Flexible Automation & Intelligent Manufacturing, held May 20-23, 2014 in San Antonio, Texas, and organized by the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Lean Systems, University of Texas at San Antonio
Includes bibliographical references


Business logistics--Management, Forest products industry--Production control, Six sigma (Quality control standard)