Forthcoming articles

 


International Journal of Services and Operations Management

 

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International Journal of Services and Operations Management (155 papers in press)

 

Regular Issues

 

  • ERP implementation in public healthcare, achievable benefits and encountered criticalities An investigation from Italy   Order a copy of this article
    by Andrea Chiarini, Emidia Vagnoni, Luca Chiarini 
    Abstract: Enterprise Resource Planning has been mainly implemented in private industries and there are few inquiries of implementation in public healthcare, particularly in Europe. Hence, this paper aims to enrich the debate concerning public healthcare by investigating one of the first applications in Italy. \r\n The research aims at highlighting the benefits brought by the implementation as well as the criticalities encountered. We found that benefits can be classified into four theoretical categories: patients satisfaction, stakeholders satisfaction, operations efficiency, and strategic and performance management. Whereas criticalities such as complexity of the project, process reengineering and staffs involvement can impede the implementation. The novelty and value of the paper lie in a new classification of benefits and criticalities concerning Enterprise Resource Planning implementation in public healthcare.\r\n The classification is particularly useful for practitioners and managers who want to implement structured Enterprise Resource Planning in complex organizations such as large public hospitals. We concluded with the limitations of this research and the new avenues of research opened. \r\n
    Keywords: Enterprise Resource Planning, Public Healthcare Services, IT implementation, Service Operations Efficiency

  • Contact Centre Service Excellence: A Proposed Conceptual Framework   Order a copy of this article
    by Surya Dharamdass, Yudi Fernando 
    Abstract: This paper aims to develop a proposed conceptual framework that can be used in studying the determinants of contact centre service excellence for the continuously growing contact centre business globally. A content analysis method is performed on a range of English-written published papers between 1993 and 2014 to explore the proposed determinants of contact centre service excellence. The primary observation shows that there is limited academic literature in this area. The findings from the distillation of the proposed determinants of contact centre service excellence in essence suggest that there should be a high focus on the people customer service agents (CSAs) hiring criteria, training and development, reward system, team structure and the cross-functional co-ordination process. The implication to future researchers is to focus on these determinants to better understand the impact on service excellence. For practitioners, the implication is to consider reviewing the current determinants used in their organisations to achieve service excellence and consider adopting the proposed determinants.
    Keywords: content analysis; contact centres; call centres; service excellence; service quality; customer service agents; CSAs; business process outsourcing; BPO; conceptual framework; service delivery; customer delight; operations management

  • Improving the quality and yield in the casting of compressor pulley through the application of Total failure mode and effects analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Senthilmurugan P.R., Jegadheesan C, Devadasan S.R. 
    Abstract: In the research reported in this paper, a technique called Total Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (TFMEA) was applied in a foundry producing casting of compressor pulley. TFMEA facilitates to carryout failure analysis in a simple manner and connect the departments and employees for gathering their knowledge for providing solutions to prevent the occurrence of failures. According to the recommendation evolved in this TFMEA project, the gating system of mold was newly designed. Subsequently, it was found that the usage of the new gating design resulted in the increase of yield by ten percent. Subsequently conducting of X-ray test revealed that the casting of compressor pulleys were free from shrinkage. Thus, TFMEA was useful in enhancing productivity without compromising the quality of the casting of compressor pulleys.
    Keywords: FMEA, TFMEA, Total quality management, casting, continuous quality improvement.

  • A Pareto-based Approach to Optimize Aggregate Production Planning Problem Considering Reliable Supplier Selection   Order a copy of this article
    by Arash Nobari, AmirSaman Kheirkhah, Vahid Hajipour 
    Abstract: This work presents a multi objective model for a multi-product, multi-site aggregate production planning (APP) problem in a supply chain. The objectives are (I) minimizing the total cost of supply chain including inventory costs, manufacturing costs, work force costs, hiring, and firing costs, and (II) maximizing the reliability of the supply chains production plan with regard to the selection of reliable suppliers which have probabilistic lead times. Based on the complexity of the proposed model, two Pareto-based multi-objective metaheuristic algorithms including multi-objective imperialist competitive algorithm (MOICA) and non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm (NSGA-II) were applied to solve the proposed model. In order to evaluate the results, several numerical examples were generated, by which the algorithms were analyzed statistically and graphically.
    Keywords: Aggregate production planning; Supply Chain management; Multi-objective optimization; MOICA; NSGA-II.

  • Service Gap Deployment (SGD): a framework to link quality gaps to service activities   Order a copy of this article
    by Fiorenzo Franceschini, Luca Mastrogiacomo 
    Abstract: This paper presents the Service Gap Deployment (SGD), a new method to prioritize crucial to quality activities of a service that does not completely satisfy customer expectations. In the SGD, service activities (SAs) are related to gaps between customer expectations and perceptions so as to identify SAs that may need a redesign or improvement in order to satisfy customer needs. The method, which expands the Gaps Model of Service Quality by Parasuraman et al. (1985), supports the design of evolutionary and sustaining improvements of the service parts that generate customer dissatisfaction. Specifically, the SGD introduces three major contributions: (i) it creates a map relating service dimensions to SAs; (ii) it highlights crucial to quality activities and (iii) it allows a focused improvement of the analysed service. The description is supported by an excerpt from a real application example, concerning the prioritization of crucial to quality SAs of an airport luggage delivery service.
    Keywords: Gap Model; Service Quality; SERVQUAL; Quality Function Deployment; Service Activities; Service Gap Deployment

  • Hot strip mill production planning and sequencing   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohammad Reza Yadollahpour, Behrooz ArbabShirani 
    Abstract: Production planning and sequencing in Hot Strip Mill (HSM) process consists of decision making about three important issues: assigning the orders to slabs, building up programs from the slabs, and sequencing the programs on rolling machines. In contrast to earlier investigations that mostly focus on one of these issues, a comprehensive mathematical model where considerations for both mid and short term planning horizons are simultaneously taken into account is presented to formulate the whole problem. A greedy algorithm is then presented to solve the model in a reasonable amount of time and used for planning in Mobarakeh Steel Company (MSC), the biggest steel enterprise in the Middle East. Computational experiments demonstrate that the proposed method substantially increases the productivity in MSC by decreasing the total tardiness of orders, unsupplied demands of products, setup times and optimally utilizing the lifespans of rollers.
    Keywords: Strip Mill Shop; Hot-rolling; Production planning; Sequencing; Integer Linear Programming; Heuristics.

  • Work Life Balance of Women Employees: A Literature Review   Order a copy of this article
    by Vasumathi Arumugam 
    Abstract: The review of literature on Work-life Balance of women employees has been outlined up in view of its increased popularity with the major objective to have prosperity of society and the realization of fulfilling lives for its women employees by supporting the growth of every women employee and the further development of the companies. Maintain equilibrium and driving towards success in life depends on how an individual decisively and tactically understands and manage the life. This is possible when organisation, individual and society clearly understands their intention and devise and implement strategies to construct balance in reducing risk and attaining success. WLB is a major concern for the women employees in today‟s scenario, as extended work hours in the organisation pulls women employees productivity and time which they actually meant to devote to their family sphere. The researcher has reviewed the literature on Work Life balance (WLB) of women employees with regard to significance of WLB, Theories of WLB, determinants of WLB, facilitators of WLB, coping strategies of WLB, WLB and Performance and finally consequences of WLB. In this article, an endeavour has been made to provide an overview of various aspects of Work-Life Balance through the review of existing literature. The sources referred include various journals, books, doctoral thesis, working papers, reports, magazines, internet sites etc., and has been reflected as references at the end.
    Keywords: Work life balance, Significance, Theories, determinants, facilitators, coping strategies, performances and Consequences.

  • Conceptual Design and Development of pneumatically controlled flexible fixture and pallets   Order a copy of this article
    by Suman Gothwal, Tilak Raj 
    Abstract: The development of flexible fixture and pallets has been recognized as being of paramount importance in the rapidly evolving field of FMSs. Flexible fixturing is a necessary aspect of Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS) and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing Systems (CIMS). Fixtures are used to fixate, position and support workpieces and form a crucial tool in manufacturing. The performance of fixture influences the product manufacturing quality, productivity and cost. Flexible fixtures provide solution to the problem of costly redesign of fixtures due to changes in dimensions or geometry of parts to be manufactured. Various areas related to design of flexible fixture have already been very well described by various renowned authors. This paper carries out the conceptual designing of pneumatically controlled flexible fixture and pallets for machining (drilling and milling) operation. Pneumatic cylinders and electric motors used as actuators. The first part of this paper considers introduction and literature review with significant researches and requirements of fixtures over time. After that, different aspects related to fixture design have been presented to give a deep and quick understanding of fixture design and its criteria for drilling and milling heads. Then conceptual designing of pneumatically controlled flexible fixture and pallets has been discussed. The shortcomings of the existing studies are stated and future directions are proposed.
    Keywords: Flexible Manufacturing System; Fixturing; Flexible fixtures; Flexible pallets; 3D SolidWork; Drilling heads; Milling heads;

  • Robust Cooperative Maximal Covering Location Problem: A case study of the locating Tele-Taxi stations in Tabriz, Iran   Order a copy of this article
    by Hassan Rezazadeh, Salim Moghtased Azar 
    Abstract: Today, maximizing the number of steady customers and consistency in meeting their needs are two important factors affecting the profitability of companies. Therefore, researchers are trying to model, study and analyze factors effecting the businesses. To this end and with regard to covering problem applications, this problem is inclusively studied in the Operations Research (OR) literature. This article proposes a novel Maximal Covering Location Problem (MCLP) in which different factors (Capacity of facilities, Budget, Number of available facilities in different types) have been considered. To provide a real case problem, locating Tele-Taxi stations in Tabriz, Iran have been studied. Moreover, to analyze the effects of uncertainty in the rate of demand in each demand point and capacity of facilities as undeniable facts of real-world, the robust counterpart of the proposed model is developed. Furthermore, a sensitivity analysis on the constant perturbation for uncertain parameters have been conducted.
    Keywords: Facility location; Maximal covering location problem; Robust optimization

  • Modeling of barriers and initiatives of Continuous improvement approach for enhancing the performance of SMEs of Northern India   Order a copy of this article
    by Jagdeep Sraun 
    Abstract: Continuous Improvement is a management approach of enhancing processes using small incremental improvements. This study attempts to access the significant barriers, benefits and initiatives of CI approach in SMEs of Northern India. To meet this objective Interpretive Structural Modeling, options field methodology (OFM), options profile methodology (OPM), analytic hierarchy process (AHP), Fuzzy Set Theory (FST) has been applied and impact of endogenous initiatives on exogenous initiatives using Structural Equation Modeling. Result indicates that barriers including lack of management commitment, lack of continuous training and education to employees, lack of employee trust in senior management and inadequate knowledge of Continuous improvement approach have high driving power and low dependency power. Moreover Customer and supplier relations play a high significant role in improving the performance of SMEs.
    Keywords: Continuous Improvement, OPM,OFT, FST

  • Performance evaluation of TQM attainment in Indian manufacturing sector   Order a copy of this article
    by Vineet Gupta, Dixit Garg, Raj Kumar 
    Abstract: Total Quality Management (TQM) improves product quality, expands business goodwill, provides competitive edge and increases customer base with satisfaction. Most enterprises agree with TQM potential and they have successfully implemented. Although the stagnant urge of some effective performance evaluation mechanism is unfulfilled. With this thought, a performance evaluation model is proposed to examine the implementation performance of TQM practices in the automobile and automotive establishments in India. By this model, a company may analyze the effectiveness as a performance measure of implied TQM practices by considering attainment proportion to implement and significance proportion to fix priority in implementation. Further, the established Inclusive Effectiveness Model is verified by statistical control chart. Also, an industry is selected arbitrarily to check the applicability of the conceived model.
    Keywords: Significance proportion; Attainment proportion; TQM practices; Reliability coefficient

  • Measuring of intellectual capital indexes usingFAHP technique in Institutes of Higher Education   Order a copy of this article
    by Zahra Ghassabi 
    Abstract: The main aim of this study was measuring intellectual capital indexesat those institutes of higher education. The model of the study is tested on a sample of 30 experts in institutes of higher education in Iran. The main instruments used for gathering the data in this study were institutes of higher education records and questionnaire. In this study, regarding to the different levels of sub criteria used for human resourcescapital, organizational capital, communicative capital, and sub criteriaused for intellectual capital measuring indexes were ranked in institutes of higher educationby using fuzzy Analytic hierarchy process. The results obtained from FAHPmethodindicate that regarding the indexes used for measuring intellectual capital, it is concluded that human resource capital is the most important factor among the other factors. According tothe scales related to human resourcecapital, we realized that leadership ability and employee behavior are the most important ones.According tothe scales related to organizational capital we realized that being up to date is the first priority According tothe scales related to communicative capital we realized that customer is the first priority and market and stockholders are as next priorities
    Keywords: Intellectual capital,human capital, communication capital,organizationalcapital, FAHP

  • Exploring key dimensions of E-service quality: A case of Indian banking industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Vivek Agrawal, Vikas Tripathi, Anand Mohan Agrawal 
    Abstract: Purpose: Consumers become more aware of a companys performance when the service provider adopts technology. This holds especially true when financial transactions are involved (e.g. when availing of services such as banking). In such situations, consumers demand more reliable services and greater security in financial transactions. Thus, banks need to improve the quality of e-services provided by them. However, to improve online service quality (e-service quality), it is important to understand the factors influencing e-service quality. The present paper seeks to identify e-service quality dimensions relevant to the banking industry. It attempts to critically analyze the relationship amongst them so that policy makers can focus on relevant parameters to improve the e-service quality in banking. Design/methodology/approach: Interpretive structural modeling (ISM) approach has been applied in this study for modeling the e-service quality dimension. The model would assist policy makers in improving and developing services provided electronically by banks. Further, identification of dimensions would help decision makers improve these dimensions. Findings: The major findings of this study are to prioritize the strategic dimension in reducing the risks associated with e-service quality. Research shows that there exists a group of dimensions with high driving power and low dependence requiring maximum attention and possessing strategic importance. Limitations/implications: Policy makers in the banking industry would benefit from this classification in that they would be able to avail themselves of a tool that would enable them to differentiate among the different dimensions affecting e-service quality of online banking, and understand the underlying relationships. Such understanding would help them identify and focus on key dimensions that are important for providing better services online, and building a strong customer base. Originality/value: The hierarchical presentation of dimensions and their classification into driver and dependent categories is a unique attempt that has been made in context of e-service quality in the Indian banking industry.
    Keywords: bank; e-service quality; ISM; MICMAC analysis

  • A Cooperative Covering Problem under Disruption Considering Backup Coverage   Order a copy of this article
    by Ladan Hazrati Ashtiani, Mehdi Seifbarghy, Mahdi Bashiri 
    Abstract: In this paper, we study the location of emergency centers considering cooperative and backup coverage while natural disasters occur which can result in facility disruption. In this regard, a reliable version of cooperative covering problem is presented considering two types of candidate sites i.e. reliable and unreliable. To achieve a fortified system against disaster, reliable candidate sites are selected from areas which are far away from the disaster harms. Furthermore, backup coverage is considered to compensate unsatisfied coverage of the demand zones due to facility disruption. The performance of the model is investigated solving numerical examples with different approaches utilizing a commercial software. The results confirm accurate performance of the model. They also show that both facility failure and backup coverage considerations lead to a more efficient network by incurring some additional cost.
    Keywords: Backup coverage; Cooperative covering; Disruption; Natural disaster; Reliability.

  • Failure analysis of automobile spares in a manufacturing supply chain distribution centre using Six Sigma DMAIC framework   Order a copy of this article
    by S. Srivatsa Srinivas, V. Raja Sreedharan 
    Abstract: The spares distribution centre is an important member of a manufacturing supply chain where the automobile components are packaged and distributed to customers and retail units. Though the components do not undergo processing in a spare parts centre, various other operations are performed during distribution that contributes to component failures. The Six Sigma DMAIC framework is for the analysis of the failures effectively. The different causes of rejections are generated using the Cause and Effect diagram and each of these causes are validated with the help of experiments and other tools. The root cause of this problem arising in the distribution centre is identified to be the packing method. A solution to the existing cause of the problem is implemented with minor variations in the current packing method and the results are discussed. A structured follow up plan for continuous improvement is also suggested.
    Keywords: Spare parts distribution unit; failure analysis; Six Sigma; DMAIC.

  • Multi-stage stochastic supply chain planning in textile and apparel industry under demand uncertainty with risk considerations   Order a copy of this article
    by Houssem Felfel, Omar Ayadi, Faouzi Masmoudi 
    Abstract: In this paper, a multi-product, multi-period, multi-site supply chain production and transportation planning problem under customer demand uncertainty is considered. The problem is modeled using a multi-stage stochastic programming model taking into account the production amount, the inventory and backorder levels as well as the quantity of products to be transported between the different plants and customers in each period. Risk Management is also addressed by incorporating a risk metric into the stochastic programming model which leads to a multi-objective optimization model. The objective aims simultaneously to maximize the expected profit as well as the worst case profit. A real example from textile and apparel industry is studied in order to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed model and the robustness of the supply chain planning solutions.
    Keywords: multi-site; supply chain planning; multi-stage stochastic programming; textile; risk management.

  • Theoretical and industrial studies on the electromechanical relay   Order a copy of this article
    by Vinod M, S R Devadasan, D Rajanayagam, Sunil D T, Thilak VMM 
    Abstract: Most of the modern products incorporated with automation features involve the switching on and switching off the electrical circuits. This automating feature is carried out by using relays. Though relays play such an important role in many products, the efforts made by the engineers to improve its design and manufacturing methods have been minimal. In order to overcome this deficient situation, the research reported in this paper was carried out. During this research, the theoretical and practical aspects of one type of relay called electromechanical relay were studied. Furthermore, two problems encountered in the manufacturing of electromechanical relay in a company were studied and the solutions have been brought out. In total, by pursuing the research reported in this paper, contributions have been made to strengthen the bridge between the theoretical and industrial aspects of designing and manufacturing electromechanical relays.
    Keywords: Electromechanical relay, Electromagnetic coil, Armature, Electrical circuits, Mechanical contacts, Solid state relay.

  • Analysing courts as a professional service operations management environment   Order a copy of this article
    by Petra Pekkanen, Tiina Puolakka, Timo Pirttilä 
    Abstract: The study provides an analysis of courts as professional service organizations and explores the specific features and challenges connected to operations management in courts. The analysis is based on the data and findings of case studies conducted in five courts. The data is analysed based on the perspectives identified in professional service operations management literature: nature of customer, nature of professional work and nature of work processes. The results indicate that the special nature of the court customer, the emphasized need for independency and autonomy of the judges, as well as great variation in product requirements pose distinct challenges to operations management. Improvement opportunities are discussed based on the identified challenges. Possible areas for improvement includes for example orderliness and planning possibilities, as well as approaches aiming at improving the goal-orientation of operations.
    Keywords: Operations management, service sector, professional service, court

  • Evaluation and Selection of ThirdParty Logistics Providers (3PL) by using an Integrated Multi-Criteria Decision Making Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Rakesh Raut, Manoj Kharat, Sachin Kamble, Sheetal Kamble 
    Abstract: Today with business globalisation, the use of third-party logistics service providers (3PLSP) is becoming prevalent. With the worldwide increasing use of 3PL services, the need for carefully evaluating and selecting the best 3PL is becoming much more critical. Supply chain managers always face the dilemma of selecting the right 3PL. The current study presents an efficient data envelopment analysis (DEA) and analytic hierarchy process (AHP) based decision framework for 3PL evaluation and selection for an outsourcing arrangement. The analysis results demonstrate the effectiveness of the integrated DEA-AHP model as a decision analysis tool for 3PL evaluation and selection. Further, the application of decision framework has been demonstrated with a real case situation. Finally, the study discusses the implications of the results in a real-life context and concludes with the managerial insights identifying a few inherent limitations of the approach utilised.
    Keywords: Outsourcing; Third party logistics (3PL); Evaluation and Selection; MCDM; DEA; AHP.

  • Coordination and Pricing Decisions in a Closed-Loop Supply Chain   Order a copy of this article
    by Hamid Faramarzi, Ignacio Castillo 
    Abstract: This paper investigates coordination and pricing decisions in a closed-loop supply chain (CLSC) with a manufacturer (who solely produces the new product), a remanufacturer, and a retailer (who sells both new and remanufactured products). We also consider a supplier who provides both the manufacturer and remanufacturer with new parts. In practice, the new and remanufactured products are vertically differentiated: generally consumers perceive the remanufactured product as of a lower quality. This key characteristic is captured in our research. The implication is that CLSC members are required to price the new and remanufactured products accordingly. Moreover, we consider three coordination structures: manufacturer and retailer coordinated (MRC), retailer and remanufacturer coordinated (RREMC), and a completely decentralized (CD) channel, which serves as a benchmark. In this paper, we are able to analytically show how the optimal prices and quantities for new and remanufactured products at the retailer level compare with each other across different CLSC coordination structures. In addition, through an extensive numerical study, we show how the total CLSC profits and the suppliers profits compare with each other across these structures. We also investigate the sensitivity of our results to the quality of returns and consumers perceptions. We find that both the CLSC and the supplier enjoy the highest profits from the coordination between the retailer and the manufacturer. In addition, we show that the coordination between the retailer and the remanufacturer results in the lowest profits for the CLSC members, but not necessarily the lowest for the supplier.
    Keywords: Decision analysis; Closed-Loop Supply Chain; Coordination; Pricing; Quality of returns; Consumers’ Perception

  • Work Life Balance of Women Workers in Tannery industry, Tamilnadu An empirical Bivariate Study   Order a copy of this article
    by Vasumathi Arumugam, Prithi S 
    Abstract: Women penetrating into the work force have become a global phenomenon. This has added a value to women as well as changed the attitude towards them. Women employees play multiple roles and try to achieve the desired balance between work and family responsibilities, but they still find difficulty. Organizations should guide and practicing of HR policies which enables them to prioritize the roles accordingly and complete the tasks of work and family. This research paper is an empirical study that narrates the work life balance of women labors working in Tannery Industry. The study found the positive relationship between age of the respondents and having stress related diseases. The researchers have found that the management gives more support to women in balancing work and family when compared to superiors, colleagues and family members. This study also revealed that annual income of the respondents with responses towards the imbalance between work and family life, organization is flexible and responsive to family related needs and work life balance options in the company.
    Keywords: Work Life Balance, multiple role, flexible, responsibility, stress and disease

  • TOTAL QUALITY MANAGEMENT AND QUALITY CERTIFICATION: EFFECTS IN ORGANIZATIONAL PERFORMANCE   Order a copy of this article
    by Marina Godinho Antunes, Joaquín Texeira Quirós, Maria Rosário Justino 
    Abstract: The purpose of this research is to analyze the relationship between TQM (Total Quality Management) and quality certification in order to assess whether the TQM practices are indispensable assumptions that precede the quality certification in organizations, analyzing likewise their impact in the organizational performance. The data were obtained through an online questionnaire, sent to small and medium-sized Portuguese companies, having being conducted the study based on responses received from 287 valid questionnaires. The findings indicate that certified companies have implemented the TQM practices, however certification does not translate into improved financial performance, leading only to operational improvement of organizations. Furthermore, the findings show that the implementation of TQM practices in organizations provides an improvement in their performance, both operational and financial.
    Keywords: Continuous improvement, ISO 9000, Quality certification, Organizational performance, Total quality management.

  • Prioitizing the Barriers of Waste management as per Indian Persective by Promethee_II and Vikor method.   Order a copy of this article
    by Suchismitasatapathy Satapathy, Anshuman Garanaik 
    Abstract: In the current scenario wastes are polluting the earth, which is a major concern for keeping environment safe and clean. However, these problems can be dealt by proper disposal and proper treatment of wastes. Wastes can be infectious and may harm us. So all over the world the message of clean environment is spreading .So an effort is taken to find barriers which restrict the proper disposal and the proper treatment of waste in India. An extensive study is done on different types of waste namely, Hospital/Biomedical Waste, Municipal Solid Waste, Paper Waste and E-Waste and some common barriers are found for each waste and then all barriers are ranked as per the importance by PROMETHEE-II & Vikor Analysis,Such that necessary actions can be taken for waste management in India.
    Keywords: Hospital/Biomedical Waste; Municipal Solid Waste; Paper Waste; E-waste; Vermicomposting,Waste Management

  • A Development Model of Factors Affecting Customer loyalty to Mobile Service Providers In Thailand.   Order a copy of this article
    by Patcharanan Klankaew 
    Abstract: The purpose of this research is to explore the model of factors affecting customer loyalty to mobile service providers of Thailand. Consequently, this study examined and analysed the causal relation factors of service quality, brand image, customer satisfaction, and switching deterrents on their loyalty. Based on previous empirical studies, this study proposes a structural model of customer loyalty and units of analysis are selected from users of 3 major mobile phone service providers, totalling 400 people. Population sampling is mobile users from the percentage of six areas in Bangkok with multi-stage sampling. A set of questionnaires is used to collect data. An analysis of structural equation modelling using AMOS 21 program is conducted to test the ten hypotheses. This paper provides development model for mobile phone service providers to manage the important influential roles of service quality, brand image and customer satisfaction effect on customer loyalty.
    Keywords: Keywords: Service quality, brand image, customer satisfaction, switching deterrents, customer loyalty, and mobile service providers.

  • Supply Chain Coordination under Revenue-Sharing Contract with Value-Added Services considering Risk-Attitude of the Customers   Order a copy of this article
    by Nafiseh Shamsi Gamchi, S. Ali Torabi 
    Abstract: In this paper, we address a dual-channel supply chain in which a manufacturer sells multiple products via both a direct channel (like an online market) and indirect channels (e.g., through some retailers). Different service contracts with different risk-attitudes are offered by different channels as product warranty. A decentralized and a centralized model (under revenue-sharing contract) are discussed to obtain the sale price of each product at each channel. Two coordinating factors, namely the wholesale price and the fraction of revenue, are obtained as decision variable and using Shapley Value respectively. Finally, a numerical example is presented to illustrate the applicability of the proposed decision models.
    Keywords: Service Contracts; Centralized Supply Chain; Revenue Sharing Contract; Dual-Channel; Risk-attitude

  • Business Process Reengineering Framework and Methodology: A Critical Study   Order a copy of this article
    by Hari Lal Bhaskar 
    Abstract: Business Process Reengineering (BPR) has become a most popular change management approach for radical redesign and improvement of business process. It promotes companies to do things effectively in order to achieve overall quality. Unfortunately, it has been estimated that more than 70% of BPR implementations have failed to achieve expected results due to lake of suitable framework and methodology. Therefore, author tried to asses the available some different BPR framework and methodology aiming to develop a suitable framework and methodology as well as to fill the literature gap. The other aims of this study are to study the BPR factors that may influence the performance and to explore the implementation level of BPR in Indian manufacturing organizations. In this paper, a proposed common BPR framework and methodology for organizations has developed based on the design of recent BPR frameworks and methodologies identified in the literature. The major component factors of BPR for the manufacturing organizations have been shown in figure. This paper also presents the success and failure factor that affect BPR projects. Finally, the conclusion places the findings of this study and outlines the expected benefits of BPR.
    Keywords: Business process reengineering (BPR); BPR framework; BPR methodology; BPR factors; organizational performance; success & failure factors.

  • Predicting the Behavioural Intention to adopt Lean practices: An Empirical Study in the Manufacturing Industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Swati Alok, Aman Kabra, Anirudh Mudam 
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to test the efficacy of Ajzens Theory of Planned behaviour (TPB) in predicting lean adoption practices, which holds that intention is strong determinant of the behaviour. With this cue, a study was conducted among the employees of Awarpur Cement Works, Maharashtra (UltraTech Cements, Aditya Birla Group). A questionnaire using Ajzens guidelines was administered to the employees. Prior to the main study, qualitative research was conducted to identify the various advantages, facilitators and barriers in the implementation of lean management practices among the target population. Seven variables of Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) comprising Perceived direct advantages (PA), Perceived indirect advantages (P_IA), Perceived disadvantages (P_DisA), Perceived usefulness (PU, ) Subjective Norms of peers/supervisor (SN), Self-Efficacy (SE) and Facilitating Conditions (FC) have been studied in relation to lean adopting intentions. The multiple regression models were employed using the SPSS software to investigate the effects of the constructs on lean adopting intentions based on the 110 responses. The results indicated that TPB variables were able to capture 59.2% of the variance in predicting lean adopting intentions. FC, SE and PA were the strongest, positively related predictors while P_DisA and PU were the strongest, negatively related predictors of the lean implementation intentions. Also, education was found to be a significant factor, with the motivation to adopt lean behaviour being higher for employees with higher levels of education. The originality of the paper lies in identifying four constructs to define the attitude towards lean methods and contributes to the research into the key antecedents that affect lean adoption practices.
    Keywords: Manufacturing Sector, Lean intentions, Theory of Planned Behaviour, Perceived direct advantage, Perceived indirect advantage, Perceived disadvantage

  • A new multi-objective/product green supply chain considering quality level reprocessing cost   Order a copy of this article
    by Parvaneh Loni, Alireza Arshadi Khamseh 
    Abstract: Green supply chain is among the hottest recent research subjects in supply chain management which not only optimises the costs and service levels during a time period all over the chain, but also considers effect of emission of CO2 greenhouse on the overall value of supply chain for sustainable development. Therefore, in this paper, a Bi-objective, multi-stage, multi-product quadratic optimisation model was proposed by taking into account the quality level of the purchased materials plus their reprocessing extra costs to system in stochastic mode and environmental costs of CO2 emission. Here we also consider both straight and step by step transportation in supply chain network design. Since the problems is NP-hard, a priority-based genetic algorithm model was proposed. In this paper, three methods including BOM , LP-metric and Elastic BOM were applied to solve small data, whereas, Elastic BOM offer larger solution space and more justified solutions. Hence, for solving large data, three priority-based genetic algorithm corresponding to MODM techniques were utilised. Then, by using TOPSIS for small and ANOVA for medium and large problems, the optimum procedure for balancing the existing costs and CO2 emission in the chain was selected.
    Keywords: ¬Green supply chain, priority-based genetic algorithm, MODM techniques, CO2 emission

  • A Review on Industrial Applications of TOPSIS Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Santosh Kumar Yadav, Dennis Joseph, Nasina Jigeesh 
    Abstract: Technique for order preference by similarity to an ideal solution (TOPSIS) is a multi-attribute decision making technique, used to evaluate alternatives and find an ideal solution. Practically it has been successfully applied to identify the best alternative for decision making process from a finite set of alternatives. Its applications cover industries and many areas like selection of suppliers/processes/designs/locations/standards and many others, and it can be used for evaluation of the performance of different entities. TOPSIS helps in ranking the alternatives through a set of select attributes of a particular issue like performance, quality and safety. In view of the significance of TOPSIS in several industries to prioritize the alternatives, this paper is intended to highlight various important industrial applications of the method with the help of detailed review of literature. The main purpose of the paper is to detail the usefulness of TOPSIS in selecting the best out of a set of numerous alternatives in different industrial scenarios. It describes TOPSIS applications in different areas automobile, mobile, and information technology, manufacturing, biological and behavioral. The different prioritization objectives that are addressed in the paper include selection of supplier/brand/gene/material/vehicle/location/team member, evaluation of service quality/customer satisfaction/financial performance and investigation of causes for organizational strengths and weaknesses and even suicide thoughts. In order to detail the approach TOPSIS follows, a hypothetical example is presented. It presents the step-wise derivation of solution by using TOPSIS. A total of six alternatives have been considered in the example along with five criteria three are benefit criteria and remaining two are cost criteria. Using TOPSIS, based on relative closeness to the ideal solution, all the six alternatives have been ranked.
    Keywords: TOPSIS, Multi-criteria Decision Making, Application areas, Literature review

  • Supply Chain Performance Measurement: A future research agenda for acquiring competitiveness through the implementation of leagile manufacturing paradigm   Order a copy of this article
    by R Maharaja, S.R. Devadasan, M Sakthivel 
    Abstract: In this paper, the literature survey conducted to study the state of the art research and pinpoint the future agenda of research on leagile manufacturing is reported. The information and knowledge derived by conducting this literature survey have indicated that the researchers have been enunciating the determination of a juncture which is called as decoupling point to determine the proportion of lean and agile manufacturing implementation in the concerned traditional manufacturing companies. These researchers have also found that supply chain management plays a crucial role in ensuring the successful implementation of leagile manufacturing paradigm. The ultimate results of conducting this literature survey revealed that efforts are yet to be made for measuring the process of achieving leagility through supply chains. At this moment, researchers are required to contribute a model for measuring the performance of leagile supply chains. In this context, this paper ends with suggesting the steps to be followed for developing leagile supply chain measurement model. Such model will be useful for the engineers and managers for strengthening the weak spots to successfully implement leagile manufacturing paradigm in traditional manufacturing companies and acquire competitive strength.
    Keywords: Leagile manufacturing paradigm, supply chain management, decoupling point, leagile supply chain and supply chain performance measurement.

  • Analyzing NEH and a Few Other Similar Permutation Flow Shop Scheduling Heuristics using Taillards and Valladas Benchmarking Problems   Order a copy of this article
    by Baskar Amaladosan 
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the performance of the NEH and five more similar heuristics proposed by the author using Taillard benchmark problems (120 in numbers) proposed in 1993 and new hard benchmarks (480 in numbers) proposed by Eva Vallada et al. in 2015. Two more initial ordering of jobs are considered besides the original, which orders the jobs in non increasing order of the total processing times. The first one is according to non increasing order of average processing time and standard deviation of their processing times proposed by Dong et al. in 2008 and the other one being pertinent to non increasing order of average processing time, average machine idle time and the standard deviation of their processing times. The performance of various heuristics and different ordering of jobs are also analyzed using real time data collected from a plant manufacturing cold drawn seamless (CDS) tubes. The results indicate that two heuristics proposed by the author perform slightly better than NEH.
    Keywords: NEH Heuristic; Permutation Flow Shop; Makespan; Benchmark Problems

  • Fundamental Principles of the Toyota Way and the Theory of Constraints: Comparative Analysis and Synthesis   Order a copy of this article
    by Guilherme Venanzi Almeida, Fernando Bernardi Souza, Humberto Rossetti Baptista, Mahesh C. Gupta, Renato Campos 
    Abstract: Several researchers have attempted to understand the essence of the principles that support Toyota Way and Theory of Constraints management philosophies, because they recognize such principles as central to explain their performance. For this reason, the objective of this study is to identify similarities and differences between the Theory of Constraints and the Toyota Way from a perspective on their essential fundamentals, as much as to identify gaps as opportunities for integration. From the methodological point of view, this is a theoretical-conceptual study based on the literature. Even though important differences have been identified, the results lead to significant similarities between the two forms of management. Such similarities can be the basis for the adoption of hybrid alternatives, which can expand their limits and favor their applicability as an integrated solution.
    Keywords: Toyota Way; Theory of Constraints; Organizational Culture; Principles.

  • Importance of SERVQUAL Dimensions in Leveraging Service Quality in Insurance Industry from the Perspective of Different Cultural and Socioeconomic Environment - A SEM approach   Order a copy of this article
    by R. Meikanda Ganesh Kumar, T. Jothimurugan, P. Anbuoli 
    Abstract: The SERVQUAL model developed by Parasuraman et al.,(1988), have identified five SERVQUAL Dimensions (SDs) with 22 statements (predictor variables) and discussed its importance in driving the service quality of the service industry in satisfying consumers expectations. In this study, 24 variables (statements) were structured based on the above SERVQUAL model. These 24 statements were grouped into six dimensions after confirmatory factor analysis. An analysis was done to evaluate the significance of these SDs through the perceptions of a few profile factors, namely, Age, Occupation, Time of Maturity of Policy, and Residential Status. It was understood from the results of the analysis, that all these six SDs were found to be statistically significant and had very close association with Service Quality (SQ). The correlation analysis also confirmed the inter correlation of these SDS with one another in driving towards SQ.
    Keywords: SERVQUAL Dimensions, Consumers’ Expectations, Factor Analysis, Profile Factors and Service Quality.

  • Subcontract manufacturers service portfolio in the metal industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Kai Häkkinen, Merja Airola, Outi Kettunen 
    Abstract: The research focus in this study is on the subcontract manufacturers service portfolio in the metal industry. The aim of the study was to identify new classification types to better understand the subcontract manufacturers service business. A new kind of framework was developed to link the subcontract manufacturers capabilities to their service offering. The service offering was divided into two main classes; 1) manufacturing services and 2) other services. These two classes were divided further into four subclasses; 1) manufacturing basic operations, 2) other manufacturing-related operations, 3) operative activities, and 4) development activities. This classification was finally tested with two subcontract manufacturer companies.
    Keywords: Contract manufacturer, service portfolio, subcontract manufacture, service business, metal industry

  • Prioritizing the needs of high speed internet subscribers using Importance Performance Analysis - The case of Asia-Tech Company in Shiraz   Order a copy of this article
    by Arash Shahin, Samira Zolfaghari 
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to prioritize customer requirements in the field of high speed internet. For this purpose, Importance-Performance Analysis (IPA) has been used and 13 variables have been investigated. Then, importance and performance questionnaires have been distributed to the customers of Asia-Tech Company in Shiraz and data of 299 returned questionnaires has been analyzed. Findings indicate that the three variables of initial setup process, information about internet and easy connection are the three top priorities with highest scores of 0.106, 0.892 and 0.083, respectively.
    Keywords: Customer satisfaction, Service, Importance-Performance Analysis (IPA), Internet, Asia-Tech Company

  • Energy Consumption Assessment and Optimization of Manufacturing Sectors by Clustered Stochastic Data Envelopment Analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Ali Azadeh, Sara Motevali Haghighi, Abbas Keramati 
    Abstract: This paper presents an approach based on stochastic data envelopment analysis (SDEA) and clustering analysis to assess and optimize energy consumption in manufacturing sectors. Fossil fuel consumption, electricity consumption, total weighted production, and average weighted boiling point are considered as key performance indicators in this study. SDEA is tailored and used to alleviate data uncertainty and randomness for energy consumption problem. Clustering analysis is used to achieve homogeneity between decision making units (DMUs). Noise and sensitivity analyses are performed to select the best α of SDEA model and also to identify the most important shaping factor. The results show that total weighted production is the most influential shaping factor in this study. Also, the distance between ideal and real value of each factor is estimated in order to help decision makers in improving performance. Finally, the proposed model is validated and verified through a robust analysis. The proposed approach would help decision makers to have a comprehensive understanding of energy consumption in manufacturing sectors. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to assess and optimize energy consumption of manufacturing sectors by clustered stochastic data envelopment analysis.
    Keywords: Energy Consumption; Optimization; Manufacturing Sector; Stochastic Data Envelopment Analysis; Cluster Analysis

  • A Stochastic Scheduling Approach to Minimize the Number of Risky Jobs and Total Probability of Tardiness   Order a copy of this article
    by Gokhan Eglimez, Gursel Suer, Aslican Arinsoy 
    Abstract: In this paper, single machine stochastic scheduling problem is addressed where jobs have probabilistic processing times and deterministic due dates. In classical scheduling literature, a job is called tardy if it is completed after its due date; otherwise its called early. However, in probabilistic concept, a job can have a nonzero probability of tardiness. To capture this situation, a stochastic non-linear mathematical model is developed. The objective is to minimize the expected number of tardy jobs and the total probability of tardiness. Experimentation is performed with datasets having varying number of jobs from 10 to 100. Results are compared with deterministic model. The proposed approach resulted in a significant decrease in the number of risky jobs and the total probability of tardiness. In addition, as the variance of processing times increased, the proposed stochastic approach provided safer schedules in terms of the total probability of tardiness.
    Keywords: Stochastic scheduling; single machine; probability of tardiness; nonlinear optimization; expected number of tardy jobs.

  • The bi-team orienteering problem with time window   Order a copy of this article
    by Mahdi Bashiri, Amirhossein Karimi 
    Abstract: In this paper three algorithms are designed to solve the bi-team orienteering problem with time window (BTOPTW) in which the aim is to minimize the total travel cost as well as maximizing the score gained by the salesmen. In one of them, a greedy algorithm tries to select the best solution from the initial solutions by a greedy procedure. The other algorithm constructs a solution by the GRASP and searches its neighbour solutions. The last algorithm which is presented in this text is an extended version of previous algorithm augmented by the NSGA-II. Evaluation of the algorithms performances is done by comparing the results of the algorithm with the result of the improved augmented epsilon constraint (AUGMECON2) approach for small sized instances. For large instances the algorithms are compared by some measures such as non-dominated Pareto size (NPS), spacing metric (SM), generational distance (GD), inverse generational distance (IGD) and set coverage metric (CS). The validity of the model is analyzed by sensitivity analysis and in the computational experiments section. The instances are solved by improved augmented epsilon constraints, greedy algorithm, multi objective based on GRASP, the hybrid algorithm of the GRASP and NSGA-II. The results confirm that the greedy algorithm performs better than the others regardless of computational time; however, NSGA-II algorithm has got satisfactory efficiency in an acceptable computational time.
    Keywords: Team orienteering; Time window; Bi-objective; GRASP; NSGA-II; Greedy algorithm.

  • Goal Based approach for Environmentally Sustainable Stochastic Procurement Problem   Order a copy of this article
    by Harpreet Kaur, Surya Prakash Singh 
    Abstract: Due to volatile business environment, manufacturing firms regularly faces huge challenges in adapting to market uncertainties, increased competition and environmental legislations imposed by governments. Therefore, there is a need to capture the uncertainties in various parameters while keeping firms own interest of maximizing profitability by minimizing overall costs. This paper considers a multi period procurement problem of a firm operating in a carbon sensitive and uncertain business environment procuring multiple items from multiple vendors using multiple carriers. The firm is having limited carbon quota exceeding which carbon credits must be bought. The paper proposes a goal based approach for environmentally sustainable procurement problem (Goal_ESSP). The Goal_ESSP model addresses the firms interests by putting various targets as goals and establishing an optimal trade-off among various goal targets. The proposed Goal_ESSP model considers stochastic parameter to capture uncertainties. Finally, the Goal_ESSP model is demonstrated using three illustrations which are solved in LINGO 10.
    Keywords: Goal programming; Stochastic procurement; Environmentally sustainable; Carbon emissions; lot-sizing; Vendor selection; Carrier selection.

  • Does Ownership Matter in Service Quality?   Order a copy of this article
    by Iman Adeinat, Charles Gregg 
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to assess the level of service quality by controlling for ownership and geographical location in a franchise system. A survey was distributed to customers at three outlets in the same chain all owned by the same franchisee and all located in the Midwest region of the US. The survey questions covered five dimensions of quality: tangible, reliability, responsiveness, assurance, and empathy. The findings showed that customers had a positive response toward service quality and that there was no statistical difference in the service quality among these outlets since service quality is more likely to be emphasized and monitored closely. In addition, the results show customer satisfaction and loyalty are a result of higher service quality.
    Keywords: customer satisfaction; DINESERV; franchise; service quality.

  • Inter-organizational Learning in the Context of Third Party Logistics Services   Order a copy of this article
    by Hokey Min, Haozhe Chen, Soonhong Min 
    Abstract: In this era of knowledge economy, knowledge can be a differentiator for the firms business success. In this regard, the 3PL is no exception in that it plays a critical role in funneling information flows across firms in a supply chain as a logistics integrator. These information flows facilitate inter-organizational learning between the 3PL and its client firm. Organizational learning, however, may vary from operational to strategic decision-making hierarchy, which leads to either competitive parity or competitive advantage, respectively. Taking a dyadic perspective, this paper provides a conceptual framework theorizing inter-organizational learning potential between a third-party logistics provider (3PL) and its client firms. Within this framework, it posits that a firms orientations toward logistics outsourcing and organizational learning together influence its business performance and competitiveness. This paper also develops a series of propositions regarding inter-organizational learning between the 3PL and its multiple client firms that can be a basis for future empirical studies and theory building. Based on these propositions, we may argue that an effective learning strategy of the 3PLs in a proper combination of the firms relationship orientation and learning orientation is a key to the success of logistics outsourcing.
    Keywords: Third-party Logistics; organizational learning; knowledge transfer.

  • Quality Management System and Sustainability: A Malaysian Perspective   Order a copy of this article
    by Amjad Khalili, Md Yusof Ismail 
    Abstract: During recent times numerous studies have examined the interrelationships among Quality management system (QMS) and the sustainable performance (SP) of organizations, but none of the approaches addressed the issues in a holistic manner. Moreover, there is a very little empirical evidence concerning sustainability initiatives and how the QMS affects SP. This paper aims at investigating the linkage among the QMS and the SP of manufacturing sector of Malaysia in a complete form by applying techniques from both the SPSS and Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). The developed model with the relevant hypothesis is examined in 329 industries certified with QMS in two phases. The first phase of this study includes semi-structured interviews with Malaysian industrial managers to examine the models applicability. While in the second phase structured survey questionnaire is designed in order to obtain quantitative data for the empirical investigation. From the interviews with twelve (12) managers, it implies that practices by local manufacturers are consistent with the developed model. Subsequently, the PCA and CFA were conducted to explore and confirm the model by validating the hypothesis which reveals that SP is not affected by QMS. Thus this paper has contributed in two ways: first by using the triangulation design approach for collecting the primary data and secondly by measuring multiple targeted sectors under the manufacturing environment.
    Keywords: QMS,Sustainability,Manufacturing,Interview,Questionnaire,Malaysia.

  • An Assessment of Green Supply Chain Framework in Indian Automobile Industry using interpretive structural modelling and its validation using MICMAC analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Sadia Samar Ali, Alejandro Builes-Jaramillo, R. Kaur 
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to identify the green supply chain management enablers (GSCMEs) for Indian automobile industry and establish relationships among them using interpretive structural modeling (ISM) and find out driving and dependence power of enablers, using MICMAC (Matriced' Impacts Crois
    Keywords: Green supply chain; Indian Auto Mobile Industry; interpretive Structural Modelling; ISM; MICMAC.

  • LEAN MANUFACTURING CONCEPTS IN WET GRINDER ASSEMBLY LINE THROUGH VALUE STATE MAPPING   Order a copy of this article
    by K. Sivananda Devi 
    Abstract: The current focus of modern manufacturing is to develop a mechanism which converts the raw material to the finished goods with zero wastage and at least-cost. Lean manufacturing approach is considered as a successful business strategy which employs minimization of process variability and non-value added activities (waste). Value Stream Mapping is one of the advanced tool in lean manufacturing concepts. Such approach has not been explicitly practiced in wet grinder manufacturing system. An attempt has been made in this paper to systematically evaluate Current State Mapping(CSM) and implement Future State Mapping(FSM) in a wet grinder manufacturing system. Current State Mapping describes the present Value Stream Mapping and other related activities that influences the Value Stream. VSM helped the company to completely understand the process of value added and non-value added activities in the system. The objective of this study is to minimize the non value added activities, lead time of the product to meet the customer demand by achieving the required TAKT time. The current state mapping has been developed by careful observation of cycle time, change over time and non value added activities. The FSM is arrived by incorporating various improvements in the assembly line and improving value added activities.
    Keywords: Lean Manufacturing;Value stream Mapping; Assembly Line; TAKT time.

  • PREGNANT WOMENS PERCEPTION TOWARDS THE PRESCRIPTION GIVEN BY THE DOCTORS   Order a copy of this article
    by Vasumathi Arumugam 
    Abstract: Pregnant women faces some common discomforts during pregnancy such as morning sickness, backache, bladder and bowel problems, changes in skin and hair, cramps, swelling, varicose veins, fatigues, headache and indigestion etc.,. For these discomforts, some pregnant women would get advises from doctors and others will get medicines from medical shops without doctor prescription. This would lead to many side effects for pregnant women, some may face abortion too. Therefore the researcher was conducted study on the pregnant women‟s perception towards the prescription given by doctors. The researcher has collected data from 100 pregnant women in vellore district by distributing well-structured questionnaire. The researcher found that there is s a significant association between number of dependents and pregnant women‟s frequency to visit the clinic. Age and number of dependents are the important independent variable in predicting the pregnant women‟s perception towards doctor‟s suggestion and prescription of medicines.
    Keywords: Pregnant women; comfort; side effects; suggestion and prescription.

  • The impact of demographic profile on SHRM Strategies of Middle-level HR Managers in IT firm, India   Order a copy of this article
    by Vasumathi Arumugam, Saravanan Palaniappan 
    Abstract: Human resource management (HRM) functions play a vital role for employees work in an organization with more commitment. Committed employees will work in any organizational culture.. Organizational culrture is the important function of Strategic Human resource management and its practices will help in organization growth, employees performance, productivity, generating the leadership skills, abilities, motivate, retain the talented workforce, forecasting the new and available talents for future business needs; enabling the change and developing the attitude and knowledge towards the job. In the competitive scenario, all IT firms were shifted focus from administrative functions to business driven HR functions. HR mangers play an important role in IT industry and who acts as a business partner in terms of enabling the business functions, change enabler, employees champion, decision maker and continuous learner which result in enabling the future business needs for the company. The researchers have conducted a study for the sample size of 75 middle level HR managers from an Indian IT company. This study found that that the female employees were more engaged and satisfied with reference to the employee engagement activities organized by the organization than the counterparts.
    Keywords: Strategic human resource management; Organizational culture; Business driven HR; Change enable; Employees champion and Learning specialist.

  • Value Chain and Supply Chain: Which is more impacted by ERP systems?   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohammad Alawamleh, Loiy Bani Ismail, Randa Mazzawi 
    Abstract: Information Technology is constantly developing and becoming more and more attractive for business owners, who are looking for methods of integrating their internal processes, operation and departments together, in order to enhance their performance, improve customer satisfaction, gain competitive advantage and finally generate revenue. This created the need to develop a system called Enterprise Resource Planning that mains at providing workers with an easy access to information, with the means of integrating the business departments and processes together. However, a gap in literature was found with regards to the impact of linking ERP systems with Supply Chain and Value Chains, and this research aims at slightly filling in this gap by adopting companies as case studies to investigate and answer the research question.
    Keywords: ERP; Value Chain; Supply Chain; Enterprise Resource Planning; SC.

  • Instrument for measuring service quality and dimensions of service quality affecting image, value and trust in medical tourism area   Order a copy of this article
    by M.N. Anish, P.B. Dhanish, R. Sridharan 
    Abstract: This paper focuses on developing a measuring instrument for determining service quality in medical tourism area of Kerala. The measuring instrument MEDIPERF is developed based on SEVPERF method and data are collected from 411 international patients. Reliability and validity of the developed instrument is verified. This research considers a new dimension, role of information and communication technology for measuring service quality. Using regression analysis, it is inferred that the dimensions such as personnel quality, process of clinical care, hygiene and administrative procedures have significant influences in deciding the image of the hospital. It is also found that the dimensions such as personnel quality, process of clinical care, role of information and communication technology, hygiene and safety indicators have significant influences in deciding the value of service. The study also reveals that the dimensions affecting trust with the hospital are personnel quality, process of clinical care, hygiene and administrative procedures.
    Keywords: Medical tourism; service quality; image; value; trust.

  • Identification of Critical Success Factors in Reverse Logistics/ Analyzing The Interrelationships by Interpretive Structural Modelling   Order a copy of this article
    by Hamidreza Panjehfouladgaran, Nima Bahiraie, Rosnah Yusuff 
    Abstract: In recent decades, environmental issues became as one of the main concerns of the governments and societies. Manufacturing companies are looking for environmental-oriented operations to minimize landfills and maximizing environmental and economical profit. Reverse Logistics as one of the manufacturing methods is applying different types of approaches to recover used products and return them back to the market. However, recovered products are competing with new products in quality, quantity and value for gaining market share. Competition with new products requires identification of critical success factors in reverse logistics. However the available literature on revere logistics critical success factors is still very limited. Therefore, the aim of this paper is identification and ranking of critical success factors by interpretive structural modelling in reverse logistics. Moreover ranking of the critical success factors in reverse logistics by interpretive structural modelling is the other objective of this paper. Sixteen critical success factors are identified from the literature and ISM is determined the ranking of these criteria. Results indicate that these factors are linked because of mutual effect.
    Keywords: Supply Chain Management (SCM); Reverse Logistics (RL); Critical Success Factors (CSFs); Interpretive Structural Modeling (ISM).

  • Measuring the Service Quality of Luxury Hotel Chains in the United States   Order a copy of this article
    by Hokey Min 
    Abstract: In the hospitality industry, quality of services rendered to customers determines the level of business success. To sustain and improve the high level of service quality continuously, hotel management should assess how well they have served their customers and how competitive they become as a result of continuous service improvements. Such assessment begins with the identification of key service attributes that shape up the customers perceived service quality and their impacts on the customers level of satisfaction with hotel services. In particular, to achieve total customer satisfaction and stay ahead of industry rivals, hotel management should gain the knowledge of a hotels competitive position in the dynamically changing marketplace and create the opportunity for continuous service improvement. With this in mind, this paper develops service standards that help hotel managers monitor their service delivery process, identify performance gaps, and take corrective actions. Based on the exploratory study of customers who have stayed at luxury hotels in the United States, this paper identifies key success factors for luxury hotel franchises and develops service improvement plans for practicing hotel managers.
    Keywords: hotel service quality; key success factors; competitive gap analysis; benchmarking.

  • Wood based construction project supplier selection under uncertain starting date   Order a copy of this article
    by Anjali Awasthi 
    Abstract: There is a growing interest in supply management systems
    Keywords: Housing Construction project; supplier selection; stochastic conditions; linear programming; heuristics; uncertainty.

  • AN EMPIRICAL STUDY ON APPAREL RETAIL SERVICE QUALITY AND ITS IMPACT ON CUSTOMER LOYALTY IN SPECIALTY STORE   Order a copy of this article
    by Prakash N, Somasundaram R, Krishnamoorthy V 
    Abstract: The determination of this study is to examine the different dimensions of Retail Service Quality (RSQ) in the apparel retail store and its impact on Customer Loyalty. Retail apparel store customers in Tirupur, the Apparel hub of South India were surveyed by implementing the Questionnaire Method. A sample of size 250 was taken. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to inaugurate construct validity. Structural Equation Model (SEM) was used to examine the impact of different dimensions of Retail Service Quality factors with Customer Satisfaction and Customer Loyalty. The study acknowledged the five important RSQ factors (Personal Aspects, Reliability, Personal Interaction, Policy and Problem Solving) and proved that there is a relationship between the RSQ factors and Customer Satisfaction. Moreover the study found that there is no association between RSQ factors and Customer Loyalty. The identification of these apparel retail service quality factors empowers the apparel retail store managers to proposal an effective policy regarding customers attitude towards selection of store. From this study it is inferred that there is no positive relationship between customer satisfaction and Loyalty. Most of the customers are satisfied with services of apparel stores, these satisfied customers are not loyal customers. Therefore the article recommends that the management of apparel retail stores should design effective policy to retain the customers.
    Keywords: Apparel retail Store; Customer Satisfaction; Retail Service Quality; Customer Loyalty; Structural equation model (SEM).

  • Modeling and Solving a Bi-objective Single Period Problem with Incremental and All Unit Discount within Stochastic Constraints: NSGAII and MOPSO   Order a copy of this article
    by Mahsa Najimi, Seyed Hamid Reza Pasandideh 
    Abstract: One of the perennial problem in inventory control is single-period problem which is called newsboy problem. In this paper, a single-period problem is developed. The problem is presented by a bi-objective multi-product multiple constraints to maximize the expected profit as well as minimizing the whole warehouse space. Incremental and total discount policies are considered in purchasing the items.In order to optimize the objectives, three types of constraint are presumed for each product which are the service level, budget and required warehouse space. In addition, the decision variables are real and the problem will be modelled in type of a mixed integer nonlinear programming. Moreover, meta-heuristic algorithms are utilized to solve the model. Non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II (NSGA-II) and multi-objective particle swarm optimization are proposed to find the Pareto front as near-optima solutions. To achieve better results, RSM method is applied to calibrate the flexible parameters of both algorithms. In final, t-student tests are employed to compare the performances of proposed algorithms in terms of solution qualities.
    Keywords: Inventory control; bi-objective; single-period; incremental and total discount; meta-heuristic algorithms; NSGA-II; MOPSO.

  • ENERGY AND ITS INTERPLAY WITH GLOBAL CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AND SUSTAINABILITY EFFORTS   Order a copy of this article
    by Amber A. Smith-Ditizio, Terry Damron, Amye Melton 
    Abstract: There are many advantages to mandating CSR policies and practices that deal with the use of energy, with much that that responsibility of promoting green-based approaches and sustainability as part of a socially responsible company on it marketing activities. It is important to identify what each organization could do to promote environmental gains directly related to the use of energy and the need to minimize the use of green-washing campaigns in order to boost companys reputation at minimal costs. Market expectations general illustrate that if an organization does not provide certain services or products in a satisfactory manner, another organization will gain business or popularity. Public awareness of energy, CSR, and eco-friendly actions at the corporate level are increasing playing a role in the global economy and empowered customers purchase intentions.
    Keywords: carbon footprint; CSR; eco-friendly; green marketing; OECD Guidelines.

  • Transfer climate and transfer of training: The mediating role of transfer intention in hospitality organizations   Order a copy of this article
    by Uma Pricilda Jaidev 
    Abstract: The extant literature on transfer of training reports that there exists a transfer problem, wherein resources spent on training in organizations do not yield acceptable returns. Based on a thorough review of literature, the present study attempts to find, if there is a relationship between 'Transfer Climate' along with its dimensions, Managerial Support; Job Support; Organizational support as predictors, and 'Transfer of Training' as the outcome variable, in a service context. 'Transfer Intention' is considered as a mediating variable. Data from a sample of 484 respondents, who belong to Hospitality organizations was taken up for analysis and subsequent interpretation. Hospitality sector is known for investing significant resources on training, in order to ensure that their employees comply with standard operating procedures, that are very essential for service organizations, in order to ensure consistency in the services provided. Results indicate that there is a positive relationship between 'transfer climate' and 'transfer of training' and that 'transfer intention' partially mediates the relationship between 'transfer climate' and 'transfer of training'. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed and suggestions are offered for future studies.
    Keywords: Transfer Climate; Transfer Intention; Transfer of Training; Hospitality; Training; Theory of Planned Behaviour; Transfer Problem; Training and Development; Human Resources Development.

  • Fixed vs. Negotiable Price; Who Wins the Market: An Evidence from Pakistan   Order a copy of this article
    by Asad Javed, Muhammad Yasir, Faisal Sajjad 
    Abstract: Price is an important P of marking which represents the amount of cost which customers have to pay. There are different ways in products are priced. Prices of some products are fixed and some are negotiable. This paper compares the effect of fixed pricing and negotiable pricing on purchase decision of locally manufactured products. The paper also compares the effect of different demographic variables on fixed and negotiable price. The results of our empirical study, conducted on locally manufactured apparels, reveal that people evaluate fixed prices more favorably as compared to negotiable price. Furthermore, it was found that demographic variables i.e. education and income affect negotiable price, and people with different levels of education and income had differences of opinion in evaluating negotiable price. However, the majority of respondents were in favor of non-negotiable/fixed price. Hence, it could be concluded from the results that if organizations shift from negotiable price to fixed price, the inclination of customers towards their products increases. This was found to be particularly true in the context of locally manufactured products where both fixed and negotiable pricing practices are prevalent. Finally, the study concludes that sellers of locally manufactured apparels in particular and fast moving consumer goods in general can significantly improve their sales volume by shifting to non-negotiable/ fixed price policy.
    Keywords: fixed price; negotiable price; demographic variables.

  • Using weather data to improve demand forecasting for seasonal products   Order a copy of this article
    by Flora Babongo, Ari-Pekka Hameri, Valerie Chavez-Demoulin, Tapio Niemi, Patrick Appelqvist 
    Abstract: In seasonal business, manufacturers need to make major supply decisions up to a year before delivering products to retailers. Traditionally, they make those decisions based on sales forecasts that in turn are based on previous seasons sales. In our research, we study whether demand forecasts for the upcoming season could be made more accurate by taking into account the weather of the previous sales season. We use a 10 year data set of winter sports equipment (e.g. skis, boots, and snowboards) sales in Switzerland and Finland, linked with daily meteorological data, for developing and training a generalized additive model (GAM) to predict demand for the next season. Results show a forecasting error reduction of up to 45% when including meteorological data from the past season. In our case, the value of this reduction in the forecasting error corresponds to around 2% of total sales. The results contribute to the theory of stochastic inventory control by showing that taking into account external disturbances, in this case the fluctuations in weather, improves forecasting accuracy in situations where the lag between ordering and demand is around one year.
    Keywords: Demand forecasting; Seasonal products; Newsvendor model; Generalized additive model.

  • Prioritizing Product Development Strategies Based on Supply Chain Flexibility Using Multiple Attribute Decision Making - The Case of Esfahan Steel Compnay   Order a copy of this article
    by Arash Shahin, Dariush Mohamadi, Mehdi Nazari 
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to determine the priorities of product development strategies with respect to its supply chain flexibility in Esfahan Steel Co. For this purpose, attributes of supply chain flexibility have been extracted from literature and investigated in Esfahan Steel Co. Their weights have been calculated using Multiple Attribute Decision Making (MADM) techniques. Finally, product development strategies have been prioritized. According to the findings, the four priorities included the production of special rolled products, the production of special alloy steel ingots, the production of wide flange beam (size 24-30) and the production of rails strategies, respectively.
    Keywords: Supply chain flexibility; Product development strategy; Multi-attribute decision making; Esfahan steel company.

  • PSO Based Harmony Search Algorithm (PSO-HSA) to Aggregate Production Planning Under Possibilistic Environment   Order a copy of this article
    by Md. Sanowar Hossain, Khan Mohaimanul Islam 
    Abstract: This paper work developed PSO based HSA, a non-traditional optimization technique to find globally optimized solutions of complex problems more efficiently than traditional techniques. The proposed technique named as Particle Swarm Optimization based Harmony Search Algorithm (PSO-HSA) is developed on the structure of HSA and a few concepts of PSO algorithm are used to modify the improvisation processes. The aim of PSO-HSA is to incorporate multiple improvisation processes as well as total utilization of all the possible solution sets in improvisation step. Again the elimination the complexity of predefinition for various algorithm parameters is also considered. At the same time this paper demonstrated possibilistic environment based multi-product, multi-period aggregate production planning. The proposed approach uses a triangular possibility distribution for handling all the imprecise operating costs, demands, and also for the capacity data. The proposed approach uses the strategy of simultaneously minimizing the most possible value of the imprecise total costs, maximizing the possibility of obtaining lower total costs and minimizing the risk of obtaining higher total costs. Here the authors also employed genetic algorithm approach for solving the APP problems and analyzed the performance and validity of the proposed PSO-HSA approach. For reinforcing & accelerating the decision making for the decision maker a case study was considered in a Ready Made garment company in Bangladesh and the problem solved by MATLAB.
    Keywords: Possibilistic Linear Programming; Imprecise Parameters; Harmony Search Algorithm; Particle Swarm Optimization; PSO Based HSA.

  • Conceptualizing the Framework for Effectiveness of Customer Value Co-Creation in Service Innovation   Order a copy of this article
    by Tejas R. Shah 
    Abstract: The involvement of customers as co-creators in new service innovation is increasingly being suggested as a successful strategy to improve the success rate of new services. Value-in-use is a central theme for the service-dominant logic because the customer is always a co-creator of value. Co-creation involves customer engagement in the creation of offerings through ideation, design and development. The objective of this paper is to develop the framework for successful development and implementation of Customer Value Co-Creation process in service innovation. Based on literature review, three phases of value co-creation have been developed. First, Motivation for customer value co-creation is one of the important aspects to consider by a service firm. Extrinsic and intrinsic motivations play a key role for customer motivation to participate. Second, customers role in value creation process have greater been developed. Customer experience during interaction becomes central to the value creation process. Customer participation in value creation process is divided into two parts: participation behavior and citizenship behavior. Third, criteria for superior value co-creation process have been developed. This research brings the framework that motivation for value co-creation creates positive impact on value co-creation process, which in turn leads to generate positive value co-creation experience.
    Keywords: value; co-creation; service innovation; co-creation experience; customer.

  • Sustainability of the Indian Auto Rickshaw Sector: Identification of Enablers and their Interrelationship using TISM   Order a copy of this article
    by Paridhi Rathi, Abhishek Behl, Ajith Kumar VV 
    Abstract: The present study is an attempt to identify the enablers to the sustainability of the auto rickshaw sector in India and model them using Interpretive Structural Modeling (ISM) in order to establish inter relationships among them. MatricedImpactsCroises-Multiplication Appliqu
    Keywords: Enablers; Total Interpretive Structural Model; MICMAC; Sustainable Transportation; Auto-Ricksahaw; India; Urban transportation.

  • Determinants of Female Employees Job Satisfaction in Hotels in Malaysia: An Empirical Study   Order a copy of this article
    by Shiva Hashemi, Jamil Jusoh, Azizan Marzuki, Shaian Kiumarsi 
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to identify the job satisfaction level among female employees in three, four, and five star rated hotels in Malaysia, and to examine the factors that influence the job satisfaction of female employees in the selected hotels. The method used for this research was quantitative research, with a questionnaire as an instrument for gathering primary data. The findings indicate that the most important factor in job satisfaction among female employees is working condition. The results of this quantitative study also showed that the overall job satisfaction is at a neutral level. The findings of this study provide immense benefits for the hotels in Penang Island and will enable the hotels to gain better competitive advantage to compete among the local and international hotel industries. The findings will also assist hotel organizations to know the best way to satisfy their female employees.
    Keywords: Job Satisfaction; Female Employees; Tourism; Hotel Industry.

  • A mathematical model for collecting and distributing perishable products by considering costs minimization and CO2 emissions   Order a copy of this article
    by John Willmer Escobar, Rafael Tordecilla Madera, Andrés Polo Roa, Nicolas Clavijo Buriticá 
    Abstract: This paper considers the problem of allocating vehicles to collect and distribute fruit to producer associations in Colombia. In particular, the problem seeks to determine the optimal allocation of vehicles for fruit collection minimizingboth total transportation costs and CO2 emissions. This problem has multiple objectives, and the well-known ε-constraint method has been used as solution technique for the proposed mathematical models. The efficiency of the former methodology has been tested by using a case study involving the distribution of blackberry (Rubus glaucus) by an association of producers in Cundinamarca Department, Colombia. In particular, we considered 12 different scenarios related to supply levels, route outsourcing, and collection frequency. The results show the efficiency of the proposed methodology in solving vehicle allocation problems related to collection and distribution. The case study reveals that, in general, collecting fruit three days/week yields lower costs and fewer emissions than performing collections four days/week. Furthermore, increased supply leads to greater differences between costs and emissions.
    Keywords: Andean blackberry; Low-carbon emissions; Mixed-integer programming; ε-constraint method; Supply chain optimization.

  • Analyzing interactions of agile supply chain enablers in Indian manufacturing context   Order a copy of this article
    by Bharat Singh Patel, Cherian Samuel, S.K. Sharma 
    Abstract: Agility is the ability of an organization to respond quickly against unpredictable business environment like changes in market behavior and customers demand. Supply chains need to be agile in order to survive in such a business situation. This challenge can be met with agility in-built in supply chains. Agility of the organization depends upon large number of variables. These variables can be called as Agile Supply Chain (ASC) enablers. It is important for the organization to identify these variables which can be deployed collectively to make the organization, a profit making one, in the competitive market place. Enablers of agile supply chain are the concerned technologies and methodologies which are very much significant to achieve agility. It is not economical and efficient to give same focus and attention to all agility variables. To overcome this problem Interpretive Structural Modeling (ISM) is used to develop a hierarchy of enablers. In the present paper, ISM is applied to derive interrelationships among agile supply chain enablers that influence supply chain agility. Further Rank Sum Weight (RSW) method is used to allocate the weights to enablers. It is seen from literature that ISM does not reveal any weight associated with enablers. An integrated approach of ISM and RSW can help to overcome this limitation. ASC enablers have been also categorized according to their driving power and dependence using MICMAC analysis.
    Keywords: Agile Supply Chain (ASC); Agile Supply Chain Enablers; Interpretive Structural Modeling (ISM); Rank Sum Weight (RSW); MICMAC analysis.

  • The Unprecedented Commercialization of Indian Cricket: A Study Using Total Interpretive Structural Modeling   Order a copy of this article
    by Amay Yeravdekar, Abhishek Behl 
    Abstract: The advancements in the field of sports, especially cricket, are multidimensional. Of the various aspects of cricket, branding and commercialization are two areas that have received insufficient attention, both theoretically and empirically. The present study aims to develop a conceptual framework using Total Interpretive Structural Model to develop a hierarchy of enablers for commercialization of cricket. The research also discusses the reasons for inter linkages between the enablers. The study accounted for 11 enablers and discovered that facility given at the school or primary level is the key enabler for commercializing the game. The study also found out that state-of-art infrastructure, scholarships given to the players, and motivating incentives from the government are some of the other important enablers that could act as catalysts in enhancing the positive aspects of commercialization in the game. The study lays foundation for similar discussion for other sports and for empirically testing the formulated model.
    Keywords: Commercialization; Cricket; Enablers; Interpretive Structural Modeling; MICMAC; Total Interpretive Structural Modeling.

  • A Study on Green Supply Chain Management Practices in Indian Petroleum Industries   Order a copy of this article
    by Jinu Kurian, Seema Unnikrishnan, Bhagyashree Sawant 
    Abstract: This paper focuses on the Green Supply Chain Management (GSCM) practices and innovations done in the petroleum industrial sector of India and aims to analyse the key factors influencing the implementation of these practices. The paper is based on a survey conducted on senior executives of the petroleum industry in India. A questionnaire designed to study the various GSCM practices was administered to 42 senior executives from this sector and the responses were analysed. The findings of the study reveals that major benefits are in the form of regulatory compliance and adoption of environmentally friendly practices. Different types of technologies used as well as the mode of operations of participating firms are also discussed. The driving forces which helped the company in implementation of these practices are also reviewed. Some of the major barriers are also considered. The study also brings out the need to implement these practices as incremental improvements in the existing system.
    Keywords: Green supply chain; Petroleum industries; Green supply chain management practices and opportunities; Drivers and Barriers; Sustainability.

  • MEASURING STUDENTS EXPECTATIONS OF SERVICE QUALITY OF A HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTION IN A LONGITUDINAL DESIGN   Order a copy of this article
    by Domingos Fernandes Campos, Guido Salvi Dos Santos, Felipe Nalon Castro 
    Abstract: This study presents changes in undergraduate students' expectations of service quality, regarding 33 attributes of services provided at a private HEI, over a longitudinal investigation. The course directors did not intervene intentionally, directly or in any significant way that would alter the conditions under which the services were offered. Data collection was performed at five different times, addressing the same group of students. The assessment of the expectations shows that, over time, students undergo changes in their perceptions, although the relative importance of the attributes does not undergo a radical repositioning. Senior students tend to be more demanding than freshmen. The information obtained enables managing directors to align with emerging paradigms, and effectively direct resources for retention and loyalty, and to attract customers by meeting their expectations at different stages of interaction with the institution.
    Keywords: Higher education; Customer services quality; Service marketing; Longitudinal study; Distance learning; Brazil.

  • Application of fuzzy analytical network process for the selection of best technological innovation strategy in steel manufacturing SMEs   Order a copy of this article
    by Kiron K.R., Kannan K 
    Abstract: The success of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) depends mainly on its ability to innovate. Earlier studies revealed that among various types of innovation, technological innovation is the most important. Selection of the best alternative for improving technological innovation thus gains vital importance and it is a multi-criterion decision making (MCDM) problem. A model was developed for steel manufacturing SMEs to improve their technological innovation capability. The model employed fuzzy analytical network process (FANP) for the selection of the strategy for improving the technological innovation capability. The idea of applying FANP for the selection of best alternative to make an SME innovative is novel. By the developed model, studies were conducted in three small scale steel manufacturing enterprise. Among the four strategies, it was found that the best strategy for all the three organisations is the cooperation approach. Cooperation with other similar enterprises, co-operation with research and other technological institutions is found to be important for the SME. The result of the study is having utmost importance in framing the strategies for SMEs. It helps the decision makers of SMEs to create an organisational culture which can foster technological innovation.
    Keywords: Innovation; Innovation strategy; SME; Analytical Network Process; FANP; steel manufacturing SME.

  • House of Reverse Logistics: An Approach to Analyze the Factors Influencing Company Performance and Customer Complaint   Order a copy of this article
    by Farida Pulansari, Suparno -, Sri Gunani Partiwi 
    Abstract: This paper presents a House of Reverse Logistics (HRL). HRL is proposed as an effective design method for integrating Reverse Logistics (RL) problems and creating consumers satisfaction. HRL is explicitly addressed the translation of customer needs into reverse logistics perspective. HRL is very important because this approach successfully meets customer expectations, requirement and complaint. The complaint is signaling of customer dissatisfaction that indicates the important information directly from customers. The design of HRL was adopted from the Quality Function Deployment (QFD).
    Keywords: Reverse Logistics; Customer; Satisfaction; Complaint.

  • New Enhanced Differential Evolution Algorithms for Solving Multi-depot Vehicle Routing Problem with Multiple Pickup and Delivery Requests   Order a copy of this article
    by Siwaporn Kunnapapdeelert, Voratas Kachitvichyanukul 
    Abstract: This paper presents four new enhanced DE-based algorithms for solving multi-depot vehicle routing problem with multiple pickup and delivery requests (GVRP-MDMPDR). Two enhanced DE algorithms are based on subgrouping idea and two are based on the idea of strategy switching. The four enhanced algorithms are: subgrouping mutation differential evolution (SGMDE), subgrouping crossover differential evolution (SGCDE), switching mutation differential evolution (SWMDE), and switching crossover differential evolution (SWCDE). All enhanced algorithms are compared to the classical DE algorithm for solving GVRP-MDMPDR by using published benchmark test problems. The results show that algorithms SGMDE, SGCDE and SWCDE outperform classical DE algorithm. Furthermore, it found that the enhancement in the crossover process is more effective for improving DE performance than enhancement in the mutation process. The combination of the solution representations SD1 and SD3 with the DE-based algorithms also found new best known solutions in 25 out of 30 test problem instances.
    Keywords: Differential evolution; generalize multi-depot vehicle routing problem with multiple pickup and delivery requests; subgrouping; switching.

  • Performance measurement of the leagile supply chain   Order a copy of this article
    by R. Maharaja, S.R. Devadasan, M. Sakthivel, R. Murugesh 
    Abstract: In this paper, a model is contributed to enable the companies to measure the performance of the leagile supply chain. Leagile supply chains are incorporated with the principles of lean and agile manufacturing paradigms. An unique feature of this measurement model is that it is incorporated with the provision to accommodate the decoupling point of leagility. Decoupling point refers to the point that separates leanness and agility. In order to utilize this measurement model, responses against a questionnaire are to be gathered to measure the leagile supply chain performance of the company. The data gathered by getting those responses are substituted in a mathematical model to calculate the leagile supply chain performance index of the company. By referring to the leagile supply chain performance index, the company can strive to move towards imbibing agility for acquiring competitive strength.
    Keywords: Leagile production paradigm; lean manufacturing; agile manufacturing; supply chain management; decoupling point.

  • Development of Software Support for Process FMEA: A case study   Order a copy of this article
    by Karthik Bharathi S, S. Vinodh, Gopi N 
    Abstract: The goal of this article is to present a study in which Process Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) is applied to analyse weld failures and a Software Support is developed for Process FMEA. Process FMEA is concerned with prioritizing failure mode of the process. In order to enable effective computation and analysis with Process FMEA, a Software Support has been developed. The developed Software Support has been illustrated for weld failure analysis. The developed software support would enable the systematic computation and analysis of process related failure modes. The practical validity of the developed software support has been tested. The developed Software Support systematically prioritises and analyses the causes associated with weld failures.
    Keywords: Failure Mode and Effect Analysis; Process FMEA; Software Support ; Failure modes; Risk Priority Number; Total Quality Management; Weld failure.

  • Macro and micro logistic aspects in defining the parts-feeding policy in mixed-model assembly systems   Order a copy of this article
    by Maurizio Faccio, Mauro Gamberi, Marco Bortolini, Francesco Pilati 
    Abstract: The handling activities within mixed-model assembly systems deal with two different logistic levels of the production environment. The micro-logistic level includes movements of parts across each assembly station due to pick to assembly activities. The macro-logistic level includes movements of parts within the supermarket and to deliver the stock-keeping units to the assembly stations. The most frequently adopted part-feeding policies, i.e. kanban system and kitting system, strongly influences both logistic levels with opposite effects. The former continuously refills the assembly stations; the latter prepares and delivers kits of components for each product. Moving from kanban to kitting system the time spent at the macro-logistic level increases. On the contrary, the time spent in part handling at the micro-logistic level decreases when moving from kanban to kitting system. Effective trade-offs are encouraged. This paper analyses the two introduced part-feeding policies, including hybrid possibilities, through an operative total handling time comparison model. The findings from five industrial cases belonging to different sectors and a global simulation analysis are discussed. Conclusions about the impact of some of the most important logistic variables of the production system to the whole performances drive the industrial practitioners in the part-feeding policy selection.
    Keywords: part-feeding policy; kanban; kitting; hybrid system; assembly system; time model; just-in-time.

  • A new mathematical model for non-fixed destination multi-depot multiple traveling salesmen with time window problem   Order a copy of this article
    by Hany Seidgar, Mohammad Taher Shirafkan, Nikbakhsh Javadian 
    Abstract: Consider the problem of having a team of cooperative and autonomous vehicles to repeatedly visit a set of target locations and return back to their initial locations. This problem is known as multi depot multiple traveling salesman problems (MD-MTSP), which applies to several mobile robots applications. The non-fixed destination multi-depot multiple traveling salesmen with time window problem (MmTSPTW) is a generalization of a well-known MmTSP with considering time window for each node in a tour. The salesmen also are not forced to return to their starting depot. This problem is of great complexity and belongs to NP-complete class of problems. In this paper, a new mathematical model is proposed for MmTSPTW by considering waiting penalties and time window is defined for each depot (city). The salesmen only can service the customers within these time windows and also some penalties are considered for any deviation of start time. The objective function of problem is to minimize the total costs and penalties of the tours.
    Keywords: Multi depot multiple traveling salesmen; Time windows.

  • Automated Teller Machine(ATM) Performance Evaluation using Data Envelopment Analysis(DEA) Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Sajjad Shokouhyar, Azadeh Karimisefat 
    Abstract: Today, banks get involved in competition era such as other organizations and try to attract new customers while retaining their own customers. Automated Teller Machine (ATM) is one of those services. ATM has changed bank services that many experts have named this change as a revolution. ATM costs such as installation, deployment and operation costs on one hand and profitability and customer satisfaction on the other hand, have lead ATM efficiency evaluation to an important subject so banks focus on that area. Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) is a non-parametric method measuring technical efficiency and a set of unit performance. By considering the efficiency of ATM and input oriented CCR model, this research tries to measure the efficiency of 150 installed Sepah bank ATM in Tehran based on costs and income and at the end suggests some solutions to related managers in order to improve their inefficient ATMs
    Keywords: Automated Teller Machine (ATM); Shetab Network; Shetab income; Efficiency; Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA).

  • A model to identify the Factors of Supplier Communication and Financial Availability to Support the Lean Manufacturing Implementation in Small and Medium Scale Enterprises.   Order a copy of this article
    by Ramadas. Thekkoote, Satish K.P, Aibel Mathew 
    Abstract: The aim of the research paper is to present the factors associated with supplier communication and financial availability that constitute a successful implementation of lean manufacturing within the small and medium scale enterprises. Structural equation modelling (SEM) was employed to test the model drawing on a sample of 124 small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) Kerala India. Specification search in Amos 20 was employed to find out the best theoretical model given an initial model using the following fit function criteria. Chi-square. Chi-square-df (C-df), Akaike Information criteria (AIC), Browne-Cudeck criterion (BCC), Bayes Information Criterion (BIC), chi-square divided by the degrees of freedom and significance level. Communication with supplier and financial availability with 16 elements were considered in the questionnaire .Specification search was carried out build up the model on the collected data which identified two factors with 12 key variable
    Keywords: Lean Manufacturing; Small and Medium Enterprises; Questionnaire Study; Specification Search.

  • The impact of after sale service and service quality on word of mouth, mediating role of customer satisfaction   Order a copy of this article
    by Najeeb Ullah, Mustansar Hussain Ranjha, Muhammad Rehan 
    Abstract: Abstract Purpose The purpose of the paper is to investigate the effect of after sale service and service quality on word of mouth (WOM) as well as testing the mediating role of customer satisfaction. Design/methodology/approach Data were collected through a survey among telecom users in Pakistan. Two groups were sampled: customers who have experienced good or bad customer service. The hypotheses were tested by applying hierarchical regression. Findings after sale service and customer satisfaction effect on word of mouth, the customer satisfaction fully mediates between after sale service, service quality and word of mouth. Hence, after sale service and service quality has significantly positive impact on word of mouth, overall effect the quality of relationship with customers. Research limitations/implications The paper has only tested the model and hypotheses in on telecom industry. Future researcher should test the same model using different industries reflecting different customer involvement levels.Practical implications From this study, service managers can learn that investing in customer service in ongoing customer relations is the right thing to do as it is linked to customer equity through customers commitment to the firm. An understanding of the effect after sale service in satisfaction and WOM is most important to service marketing manager because it allows them to differentiate their offering critically in a way relationship with customers in long term.originality/value The impact of after sale service and service quality on word of mouth variables in ongoing relations has to the knowledge never been studied before using customer satisfaction as mediator.
    Keywords: after sale service; ASS; Services quality; SQ; customer satisfaction; CS; word of mouth; WOM; Telecom sector; TS; research project; Islamabad city; capital of Pakistan.

  • Analysis of patient flows in Elective Surgery: modelling and optimization of the hospitalization process   Order a copy of this article
    by Dario Antonelli, Giulia Bruno, Teresa Taurino 
    Abstract: Rationalizing costs while guaranteeing a good quality of service is a challenge that healthcare systems are currently facing. In elective surgery departments, as operations can be scheduled in advance, the goal is usually to maximize the utilization index of the operating theatre. Nevertheless, the optimization of a single stage of the process is pointless without an efficient management of the entire routing from income to dismissal. The paper presents Discrete Events Simulation of the actual patient flows in elective surgery exploiting the recovery logs of a hospital department. A UML Activity Diagram of the surgery process together with the collected hospital data have been used to build a stochastic model of queuing network, identify its parameters and conduct different simulated experiments in order to select the solution that best optimizes the performances of the system. The simulation results have shown that there is a large variation in waiting times in correspondence to small variations of the average value of the inter-arrival times. Therefore, solutions that optimize utilization indexes of both beds and operating theatres should consider a concurrent effort to reduce the variance of admittance processes, otherwise the waiting times will lengthen beyond acceptable limits.
    Keywords: healthcare systems; elective surgery; simulation; patient flow; Unified Modelling Language (UML).

  • Hybrid Cellular Manufacturing System Design with Cellularization Ratio: An Integrated Mixed Integer Nonlinear Programming and Discrete Event Simulation Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Gokhan Eglimez, Bulent Erenay, Gursel Suer 
    Abstract: This study investigates hybrid cellular manufacturing system design where products with highly similar process routes are formed as manufacturing cells, and products with dissimilar routes are produced in a process layout. A cell similarity threshold, cellularization ratio (C-ratio), is proposed for product assignment to cells and process layout, and integrated into a mathematical modelling-based cell formation approach. The cell formation phase is carried out with the proposed mathematical model. Several case problems are experimented and selected cases are also studied with a newly developed simulation model where manufacturing system performance is also evaluated along with the proposed hybrid cellular manufacturing design alternatives. Results indicated that considering a C-ratio during cell formation can provide higher cell similarity thus better cell formation. The increase in the coverage levels resulted in higher number of cells formed. The proposed approach can be significantly beneficial for manufacturing design decisions where product mix and process complexity are high, and for a hybrid layout that consists of cellular plus process layouts could be implemented.
    Keywords: Cellularization ratio; stochastic cellular system; mixed integer nonlinear programming; discrete event simulation; hybrid layout; cell formation; process layout.

  • Product Assignment Using Quadratic Assignment Model in Retail   Order a copy of this article
    by Bhawesh Sah, Rohit Titiyal, Desh Deepak Bhandari 
    Abstract: This paper studies the problem of product assignment in retail. It solves the problem of assigning various products to various in-store locations so that there is increased sale as well as a better customer convenience. Retail managers often work out of intuition to place various products at various locations inside the retail store. While doing so, it is often seen that retail managers ignore the phenomenon of cross-selling. This study quantifies this problem and formulates it as a quadratic assignment problem which is solved by implementing a genetic algorithm. The resulting solution maximises cross-selling among products and at the same time improves customer convenience making it a win-win situation for everybody.
    Keywords: Quadratic Assignment Problem; Genetic Algorithm; Cross-selling; Product Assignment.

  • Managing Quality within Existing Supply Chains: Case studies from Jordan   Order a copy of this article
    by Randa Mazzawi, Mohammad Alawamleh 
    Abstract: In the globalized economy supply chains are of paramount importance to international organizations, thus supply chain management has been intensively studied throughout recent decades to understand the product cycle from the supplier to end customer and within organizations. However, there is a gap in the literature concerning the management of particular parameters such as quality within supply chains. This research investigates methods of measuring quality within existing supply chains using two companies from Jordan as case studies. Two different methodologies were applied in order to be able to conduct this research: direct observation and complete participation. It was noted that quality within the manufacturing supply chain was defined differently than in the service supply chain, thus requiring different actions to be used to measure it.
    Keywords: Supply chain; supply chain management; SCM; quality; quality tools; service; manufacturing; SERVQUAL; Fishbone diagrams.

  • Improving Organizational Process Input Factors and Company Performance   Order a copy of this article
    by Sam K. Formby, B. Dawn Medlin, Charlie Chen, Yongyi Shou, Danuvasin Charoen 
    Abstract: Enterprise environmental factors (EEFs) and organizational process assets (OPAs) are important inputs for most processes within project management knowledge areas. Lack of consideration of input of EEF and OPA factors may create stakeholder dissatisfaction, invite resistance and create chaotic changes. This study assesses the effect of three important EEF and OPA input factors (project organizational support, project control & contingency planning, and project management processes) on project baseline and planning management. In addition, we investigate how much influence that effective project baseline and planning management have on company performance. Data were collected from ninety-three certified project management professionals (PMPs) registered with the Project Management Institute (PMI) in China. A statistical analysis was conducted to assess the proposed relationships among constructs. Our findings indicated that firms that develop company-wide organizational support systems and company-wide procedures and processes for managing projects within an operations organization are better at overall performance.
    Keywords: Project Success; Project Support; Project Management Processes.

  • PARTICLE SWARM OPTIMIZATION ALGORITHM AND MULTI START SIMULATED ANNEALING ALGORITHM FOR SCHEDULING BATCHES OF PARTS IN MULTI CELL FLEXIBLE MANUFACTURING SYSTEM   Order a copy of this article
    by A.N. Balaji, S. Porselvi, N. Jawahar 
    Abstract: This paper considers the problem of scheduling batches of parts in a multi cell flexible manufacturing system (MCFMS) with sequence dependent batch setup time. The goal is to find the best sequence of batches and hence to minimize the makespan. Two mathematical models are developed namely: Batch availability model and Job availability model. As the problem is known to NP hard, Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) algorithm and Multi start Simulated Annealing (MSA) algorithm are proposed to solve the problem. The proposed algorithms are validated by testing the bench mark problem available in the literature. In addition to that, eighty problems with various sizes have been generated at random and then the performance of the proposed MSA and PSO algorithms are compared with CPLEX solver. Experimental results show that MSA provides better solution compared with PSO, same solution as CPLEX and very close to Lower bound value provided by CPLEX.
    Keywords: Flow shop scheduling; Batch availability model; Job availability model; Flexible Manufacturing System; Particle Swarm Optimization Algorithm; Multi Start Simulated Annealing Algorithm.

  • Framing transformation dynamics toward service-orientation: Alternative trajectories of B2B relations   Order a copy of this article
    by Inka Lappalainen, Tiina Valjakka, Toni Ahonen, Maaria Nuutinen 
    Abstract: This article examines the dynamics of complex transformation in value creation logics in B-to-B relations. Based on the literature of servitisation, relationship marketing, and particularly the S-D logic approach, an integrative conceptual frame for structuring provider-customer interaction is built. The frame combines strategic and operational aspects and the perspectives of both parties. It is applied empirically in the multiple case study covering different industries. The results reveal the alternative and parallel trajectories in B-to-B relations of the companies, instead of the previous unidirectional transition approach of servitisation. Furthermore, relating to the topical S-D logic debate the results indicate that the transformation from G-D logic toward S-D logic has been built in as different trajectories. Thus, the conceptual frame explicates the transformation dynamics in terms of value creation logic and mutual dependency between parties. It facilitates particularly SMEs regarding relationship-specific evaluation and development, as well as strategic re-positioning and value constellations.
    Keywords: servitisation; value co-creation; Service-dominant logic; service strategy; provider-customer relationship; SME.

  • Multi-machine flow shop scheduling problems with rejection using genetic algorithm   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohammadreza Dabiri, Soroush Avakh Darestani, Bahman Naderi 
    Abstract: This work is a study on scheduling problem with rejection on a set of multi-machine in a flow-shop scheduling system. This paper will attempt to indicate Development of a Multi-machine flow- shop scheduling model considering rejection (this problem is NP-hard due to the NP-hardness of the same problem variation on a two-machine) We analyze the quality of a solution with two criteria: one is the makespan and the one is the total rejection cost. The aim of this study is to present an Approximation algorithm and three heuristic algorithms and a genetic algorithm (GA) and successfully applied to Multi-machine flow-shop scheduling model considering rejection to minimize the makespan plus total rejection cost. Several tests problems were carried out to assess the performance of the proposed algorithms. We can conclude here that the GA is the most functional algorithm, followed by the Approximation algorithm.
    Keywords: Flow-shop scheduling; Scheduling with rejection; Approximation algorithm; Genetic algorithm; Two-level chromosome.

  • Application of Fuzzy QFD for improving the process sustainability characteristics: A case study   Order a copy of this article
    by Vimal Kek, Vinodh S, Jayakrishana K 
    Abstract: Sustainability is a vital concept recognized by modern manufacturing organizations. The objective of this study is to develop a methodology for enabling sustainability in manufacturing process. Few improvement proposals were identified for improving sustainability characteristics of manufacturing processes. Fuzzy Quality Function Deployment (FQFD) methodology has been used to prioritize the improvement proposals considering the requirements of sustainable process. The study involves two mappings: first between sustainable process requirements and sustainable manufacturing criteria, second between process sustainability criteria and improvements. The practical validity of the study has been ensured with the conduct of case study. DfX, energy modeling and process simulation, effluent management system, hotspot analysis and Eco- VSM were the prioritized improvement proposals considering the requirements. The current study can be extended to any type of manufacturing process, which shows the comprehensiveness of the proposed method. This adds the value to the proposed method and found to be original.
    Keywords: Sustainability; Quality Function Deployment; Fuzzy methods; Process sustainability.

  • Impact of Demographic Profile of Pharmaceutical Entrepreneurs on Entrepreneurial Traits and Family Stress   Order a copy of this article
    by Vasumathi Arumugam, Tamil Maran Sunderasan 
    Abstract: The Population of India is said to be 1.3 billion as per the Census. The availability of doctors for the Indian population is 7 doctors per 1000 people. The State and Central Govt. are taking measures to improve the public health care facility. The community pharmacists in this regard are in the frontline with direct interaction to community. The pharmaceutical entrepreneurs are expected to play multiple roles in the community and family which paves way to face more challenges and stress in both entrepreneurial and family life. Entrepreneurs play a vital role in improving economy of the nation. This motivates the researchers to carry a research on the impact of demographic profile on entrepreneurial traits and family stress. The researchers found that the years of experience of the entrepreneurs have significant association with decision making styles. The study also found that there is a positive correlation between income of the respondents and Machiavellianism attributes of entrepreneurs. It also proved that there is a significant variance between age of the entrepreneurs and attributes of family stress.
    Keywords: Entrepreneurs; demographic profile; family stress; Machiavellianism and decision making style.

  • SELF-SERVICE TECHNOLOGY (WEB INTERFACE): BAGOZZIS SELF-REGULATION PROCESSES FRAMEWORK TO MEASURE INDIAN CUSTOMER LOYALTY   Order a copy of this article
    by Thomas John Paul, Jayanth Jacob 
    Abstract: This study employs Bagozzi's Self-Regulation processes framework to examine the inter-relationships of key antecedents and its impact on the attitudinal and behavioral loyalty of an Indian e-customer, using self-service technology (web interface) for online shopping. This study employed questionnaire survey to collect data from 403 respondents who regularly indulged in e-shopping. Our research employs partial least squares (PLS) regression analysis to test the model. The result suggest the appraisal process variables (Overall SQ and Value) for the Indian e-customer was found to have larger direct influence on the coping behavior (Loyalty) as compared to the indirect influence on customer loyalty through the emotional response path. The result also show that overall service quality is the most significant factor positively affecting customer loyalty. This finding illustrates the importance of Overall Service quality and Value as key antecedents that shape the formation of customer loyalty. Limitations and directions for future research are provided.
    Keywords: E-Commerce; Value; Familiarity; Loyalty; Satisfaction; Trust; Overall Service Quality; Bagozzi's Self-Regulation; Indian E-Retail; PLS-SEM; Formative Construct; Reflective Construct.

  • Creating value with integrated B2B solutions: an empirical study of network maintenance services   Order a copy of this article
    by Mikko Pynnonen, Mika Immonen, Jukka Hallikas 
    Abstract: The objective of this paper is to analyse the structure of a network maintenance service solution and the role of intertwined service functions in creating value for customers. It is proposed that inherent in a solution are service functions highly valued by customers and connected with other service functions. These functions, which are the value drivers of the solution, are referred to in this paper as systemic service functions. It is necessary to identify these service functions in a solutions design to optimise the value of the whole solution. This study presents an empirical case analysis in the field of network maintenance services to enhance the understanding of value creation logic regarding integrated solutions. Social Network Analysis (SNA) and statistical methods will be applied to analyse a survey sample of the network service providers customer companies. The SNA approach serves to describe service function structure from a customer perspective. Regression analysis will be applied to connect the expected value of the service solutions to the expected quality attributes. The findings indicate that systemic service functions commonly relate to routine processes and are bound by a usage context in customer problem-solving domains. This research is expected to open up the structural role of systemic service functions in service solutions and supply chain integration, as well as provide the means to analyse service design and value creation systematically in solutions.
    Keywords: Value creation; integrated solutions; product–service system; social network analysis; network maintenance services.

  • An EOQ Model for Deteriorating Items with Partial Backlogging and Financial Considerations   Order a copy of this article
    by Mahsa Ghandehari, Maryam Dezhtaherian 
    Abstract: One of the important issues in the framework of supply chain is to determine the inventory control policy. In this regard, perishable goods are highly important due to their specific characteristics. In the present study, an inventory model for deteriorating items will be proposed considering constant demand, time value of money, and inflation. Deterioration begins immediately after the entrance of inventory into the warehouse. Delayed payment is allowable and degree of deterioration is fixed. Partially backlogged shortage is also considered and the purpose is to minimize total cost of the inventory system in a finite planning horizon. An exact algorithm was developed in this study for solving the problem and finally some numerical examples were presented. Sensitivity analysis was carried out on some of the important and basic parameters and the results were compared with the state where there is no partial backlogging.
    Keywords: Inventory; Deteriorating items; Partially backlogging; Inflation.

  • Literature review on Lean Healthcare implementation: assessment methods and practices   Order a copy of this article
    by Byanca Augusto, Guilherme Tortorella 
    Abstract: Results indicate that Lean Healthcare (LH) is a relatively recent research topic and the lack of further evidence impairs the benchmarking with previous studies. Therefore, this article aims to conduct a literature review on Lean Healthcare practices and the existing assessment methods to its implementation, drawing a comparative analysis between evidence found in manufacturing environments and healthcare context. The identification of practices and assessment methods was carried out through a systematic literature review in both contexts: healthcare and manufacturing. This study contributes in indicating gaps and opportunities in the current assessment methods of Lean Healthcare implementation, also considering the most frequent practices cited in the literature.
    Keywords: Lean Practices. Assessment Methods. Literature Review. Lean Healthcare.

  • An Integrated Approach for Performance Evaluation of Suppliers IN MANUFACTURING INDUSTRIES   Order a copy of this article
    by H.ABDUL ZUBAR, M.M.RAVI KUMAR 
    Abstract: Supplier selection is one of the vital activities in the supply chain and also a major challenge for any organization in the present competitive market scenario. This important strategic decision has a profound impact on the performance of any organization by affecting cost reduction, delivery, service and quality standards of the end products. Different criteria or attributes are involved in the selection and evaluation model and so supplier selection is a multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) problem. The model presented in this thesis aims at aiding the selection process and consists of three phases. In the first phase, criteria for evaluation of suppliers are selected based on literature and Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) is applied. The AHP is used to analyse the structure of the problem and weights of each criterion are determined. The second phase involves clustering the available data set into required number of clusters (groups) by k-means algorithm. K-means is a commonly preferred partitional clustering method which generates required number of clusters. The best cluster is selected based on the weighted sum of ratings of the elements. In the third phase, Technique for order preference by similarity to ideal solution (TOPSIS) is performed on the selected cluster. Potential suppliers belonging to the best cluster are ranked according to performance. A sensitivity analysis is then carried out to determine the robustness of the model.
    Keywords: supplier selection; analytic hierarchy process; clustering; k-means; TOPSIS; sensitivity analysis.

  • Green supplier selection problem using TOPSIS extended by D numbers in Tractor Manufacturing industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Amin Mohammadi, Soroush Avakh Darestani 
    Abstract: This research aims to evaluate the suppliers by a combined decision making method with a new concept under uncertainty with d-number structure. Due to the importance of suppliers as a level of supply chain, determining factors for supplier selection decision is of key importance. Criteria in this study all are taken from the most recent articles so far. To consider the issue of environmental indicators related to this case can be considered sharp. In the existing evaluation methods, experts can propose their opinion under uncertainty only in one level. But in new proposed decision making method, experts can proposed their idea about each alternative versus criteria in multi-level simultaneously. Therefore, in this method a group D-number structure with TOPSIS as a compromised decision making method to evaluate supplier selection has been applied. Finally to clearing the proposed method, the tractor company of Tabriz is studied as a case study.
    Keywords: MCDM; SCM; TOPSIS; D-number; BELIEF Structure.

  • Selling relationship quality to increase salesperson performance at the pharmacy industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Ida Bagus Nyoman Udayana, Naili Farida, Elia Ardyan 
    Abstract: The success of salesperson performance is determined by several factors. However, the factors influencing the success are still debatable. This study involved 259 salespeople by distributing 350 questionnaires. A random sample technique was applied in the study. The collected data were analysed using: non-response bias, Amos 21.0 and Sobel test. The results of the study show that the adaptive selling doesnt have a direct effect on the salesperson performance, but it has a significant indirect positive effect on the selling relationship quality. The customer orientation and the learning orientation have a significance positive effect on the selling relationship quality and the salesperson performance. Additionally, limitations of the study and areas for future research are presented in this paper.
    Keywords: Pharmacy Industry; adaptive selling; selling relationship quality; salesperson performance; customer orientation; learning orientation.

  • THE FACILITATING DYNAMIC OF CUSTOMER-EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION: CONTRIBUTIONS OF THE PERSON-CENTERED APPROACH TO THE SERVICE ENCOUNTER   Order a copy of this article
    by Andrés Chinchilla, César Sepúlveda, Sergio Madero 
    Abstract: Because service experience quality is constructed in the interaction between two parties the customer and the employee gaining insights on the customer-employee satisfaction phenomenon in service encounters is relevant to advance the knowledge of the service experience. This research aimed to identify a model of the facilitating dynamic of customer-employee satisfaction in service encounters. A qualitative, instrumental case study approach was undertaken to develop the study, in which 15 cases were analyzed in three separate phases and different contexts to identify the common patterns and to propose a theoretical model. The findings indicate that the attitudes from the Person-Centered Approach theory of the humanistic branch of psychology empathy, acceptance, and authenticity facilitate the satisfaction of both the customer and the employee in service encounters, foregoing conditions of this facilitative dynamic and specific impacts on the customer-employee satisfaction, such as service disposition, difference in logics, communication abilities, and extrinsic motivation.
    Keywords: service encounters; person-centered approach; service experience; service attitudes; instrumental case study.

  • Causes of reluctance of Indian manufacturing SMEs in adopting Total Quality Management   Order a copy of this article
    by Jyoti Prakas Majumdar, Goutam Kumar Kundu 
    Abstract: Total Quality Management (TQM) is an effective concept for improving the cost effectiveness and organizational performance to achieve business competitiveness for all manufacturing industries, large scale to small scale. In the present scenario of competitive business environment, TQM implementation is an essential culture and key survival tool for manufacturing SMEs. TQM has been adopted by most of the large scale Indian manufacturing industries, but very few Indian manufacturing SMEs adopted TQM, though most of them have ISO 9001 certification. However, SMEs are the backbone of Indian. This study based on exploratory research, tries to identify the causes of the reluctance of Indian manufacturing SMEs in implementing TQM, by analyzing the data collected from a number of Indian manufacturing SMEs, through an extensive interview-based survey. The authors also rank those cause-factors in order of their importance and criticality. This study will definitely contribute to the manufacturing SMEs, in India and other developing countries.
    Keywords: Total Quality Management; TQM; Small and Medium Enterprises; SME; MSME; Quality Management System; QMS; ISO 9001; Quality Assurance; Manufacturing Industries; India.

  • Agility in Healthcare Services: A Systematic Literature Exploration   Order a copy of this article
    by Rojalin Patri, Suresh M 
    Abstract: The objective of this study is to present a systematic literature review of agility in health care covering the essence of published articles, limitations and future research avenues. Its contribution to the body of knowledge is twofold. First, it classifies the literature based on seven parameters: year, country, research method, results, context, limitations and future research direction to provide an overview of the accomplished research works. Second, it highlights the research gap in the current literature and provides direction for future research. In order to accomplish the objective, relevant published articles on agile implementation/ agility in healthcare accessed in databases EBSCO, Proquest and ScienceDirect have been analyzed. The findings suggest that the extant literature has not been able to obtain a strong theoretical grounding in the field, and validation of the proposed theories, models and frame work awaits future research attention. Factors that enable agile performance and concepts as a cost reduction strategy and competency for service innovations are the least explored in the literature. In addition, there is no adequate coverage of the emerging and developing economies such as India and China in the literature. Future research should venture into these lines to enrich the body of knowledge with new insights. Furthermore, generalizability has not been attained in the field which necessitates involvement of quantitative analysis and statistical validation. Apart from this, majority of the research articles have not mentioned the limitations of the study or the direction for future research. This poses a challenge for further research in this field. Thus the lack of extensive exploration of agile literature gives way to a vast area of exploration for future research.
    Keywords: Health Services; Agile Services; Agility; Health Care; Agility Literature Review.

  • Digitisation of traditional product using computer aided design technology: A case study on desiccant compressed air dryer   Order a copy of this article
    by D.T. Sunil, S.R. Devadasan, M. Vinod, K.S. Natarajan 
    Abstract: In order to face the competition, traditional manufacturing companies are required to evolve innovative products by digitising and virtually analysing them in electronic environment. Though digitisation can be carried out by making many technologies, computer aided design (CAD) is the technology that enables economical and compatible digitisation of the products. Hence, today, it is required to explore the way of digitising the traditional products by applying CAD technology. In the context of this realisation, a case study on digitising a traditional product by name desiccant compressed air dryer (DCAR) by applying CAD technology which is presented in this paper was carried out. The procedures adopted to create the CAD models of six subassemblies of DCAR and its assembly by using a CAD software package namely Creo Parametric 2.0 are described. Then the advantage of digitising the traditional products using the CAD technology is described. The article is concluded by stating that utilizing this kind of facilities that are available in CAD software packages will enable traditional manufacturing companies to become agile by quickly adding amazing features that will delight the customer.
    Keywords: Digitisation; CAD; Mass customization; Agility; Air dryer.

  • A Pay-What-You-Want Pricing Model for Restaurants   Order a copy of this article
    by Vinaysingh Chawan 
    Abstract: A new method of pricing, known as Pay-What-You-Want (PWYW) has been successfully used in many contexts in the recent past. Success stories are in restaurants, museums, music albums, software, etc. The method where the buyer selects the price, possibly a zero price, and the seller accepts it, is a bit counter intuitive. Quite surprisingly, the PWYW pricing method has been used successfully, and some businesses have adopted it for selling their goods. We study the economic rationale behind the success of the PWYW pricing method, and analyze different situations using a simple model. Results show that the PWYW pricing method can be successful when there is a large proportion of fair-minded consumers, and a lesser proportion of free-loaders. Also, though a low marginal cost is beneficial for a PWYW method, it is not necessary. Sellers can choose to use PWYW pricing with reference prices that induce, but not bind, consumers to pay an appropriate price. Also, setting a minimum threshold price alleviates the problem of free-loaders, and the PWYW pricing method can be used profitably in the long run.
    Keywords: Pay What You Want (PWYW); Pricing; Price Discrimination; Willingness to Pay; Price Discovery Mechanism.

  • Hybridizing Plant Propagation and Local Search for uncapacitated exam scheduling problems   Order a copy of this article
    by Meryem Cheraitia, Salim Haddadi, Abdellah Salhi 
    Abstract: The uncapacitated exam scheduling problem (UESP) is a well-known computationally intractable combinatorial optimization problem. It aims at assigning exams to a predefined number of periods, avoiding conflicts over the same period, and spreading exams as evenly as possible. Here, we suggest a new hybrid algorithm combining the Plant Propagation algorithm (PPA) and Local Search (LS) for it. PPA is a population-based metaheuristic that mimics the way plants propagate. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time this idea is exploited in the context of UESP. Extensive testing on the University of Toronto benchmark dataset, and comparison against a large number of new as well as well-established methods shows that this new metaheuristic is competitive and represents a substantial addition to the arsenal of tools for solving the problem.
    Keywords: Uncapacitated exam scheduling; plant propagation algorithm; local search; hybridization.

  • Predictive Maintenance Strategy to increase the Availability of Positive Displacement Pumps: A Case Study based in Ekurhuleni Base Metals in South Africa   Order a copy of this article
    by Surajit Bag, Lawrence Kau, Arie Wessels, Jan-Harm Pretorius 
    Abstract: The paper argues the use of the case research method to study predictive maintenance of positive displacement of Ekurhuleni Base Metals in Springs, Gauteng district of South Africa. The study covered detailed predictive maintenance techniques that was applied to these pumps to improve their availability and further reduced maintenance costs. The case findings were very interesting and it was observed that from the time predictive maintenance was initiated, the pumps never failed and production targets were also met successfully. Root cause and failure analysis also played an important role in finding the root cause failure of the electric motors. The results of Root cause and failure analysis proved that predictive maintenance increases the availability of positive displacement pumps. The current case study is unique in terms of providing detailed analysis and understanding of the subject matter. The results will add tremendous practical value to the maintenance teams working on a regular basis with positive displacement pumps.
    Keywords: Predictive Maintenance (PM); Positive displacement pumps; Ekurhuleni Base Metals (EBM); Root cause and failure analysis (RCFA); Failure Reporting Analysis and Corrective Analysis (FRACAS); Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS).

  • Analysing the interactions of operational issues in sustainable supply chain: A framework   Order a copy of this article
    by Pawan Kumar, Darshan Kumar, Mahesh Chand 
    Abstract: For sustainable management i.e. environmental, economic and social issues in supply chain, there is an urge need to focus on operational issues. This current research presents a new decision making framework to facilitate this on the basis of questionnaire based survey in Indian industries. Nine operational issues in sustainable supply chain management are considered in this research for analysis. Regarding this, weighted interpretive structural modelling (W-ISM) an extended version of interpretive structural modelling (ISM) has been used to find effectiveness index and to identify the strong and weak areas, to establish a relationship and to identify driving and dependence powers among operational issues in sustainable supply chain management. The results of this analysis are highly beneficial towards society, environment perspectives for industries.
    Keywords: Sustainable supply chain management; operational issues; W-ISM.

  • Mergers and Acquisitions Strategic Fit in Middle Eastern Banking: An NDEA Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Peter Wanke, Md. Abul Kalam Azad, Henrique Correa 
    Abstract: Banking in Middle Eastern countries is well-known for its heterogeneity, small scale, and regulatory diversity. This paper presents an assessment of the strategic fit of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in Middle Eastern banks. A network DEA approach is adopted to assess how several types of efficiency scores of the resulting virtually merged banks are impacted by contextual variables: global (merger), technical (learning), harmony (scope), and scale (size) efficiencies. When two banks are virtually merged in our analysis this means that the inputs and outputs of pairs of separate banks are virtually combined to test the efficiencies of the virtually merged entity, in an attempt to better understand the industry. The impact of contextual variables related to the ownership of the bank, its type, and origin is tested using a set of several robust regressions to handle dependent variables bounded between 0 and 1: Tobit, Simplex, and Beta. The results reveal that bank type, origin, and ownership impact virtual efficiency levels; however, the findings also show that harmony and scale effects have a negative impact on merged institutions due to the heterogeneity, regulatory diversity, and small scale size that prevail in the region.
    Keywords: Banks; DEA; Mergers and Acquisitions; Middle East; Network; Robust Regression Analysis.

  • Taxonomies of Airline scheduling strategies: Cross-Regional Worldwide Analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Saleh Alkhatib, Yazan Migdadi 
    Abstract: Airlines use different scheduling strategies to manage their operations. Selecting the right scheduling strategy that fit with the airline overall strategy is an issue. In the last few years, several airline scheduling problem studies have been conducted. Most of these studies have focused on the optimization side of the problem. This study aims to identify taxonomies of airline scheduling strategies based on cross-regional airlines analytical study. Scheduling data of 360 worldwide airlines have been collected, analysed, and therefore used to explain and classify airline scheduling strategies into anticipated taxonomies. Data were collected from five regions; Africa, Arab states, Asia and Pacific, Europe, North America and South/Latin America. Standardized ratings were developed and K-Means Clustering analysis was used to develop the taxonomies of airline scheduling strategies. This study revealed that; the adopted taxonomies of airline scheduling strategies are; intercontinental, focused intercontinental, focused/selective international and focused regional scheduling strategies. The widely-adopted taxonomy is focused regional and the least adopted one is the intercontinental. These new taxonomies build the theoretical base for next research areas in airline scheduling, and help airlines to find the best scheduling strategy that fitted their regional characteristics and/or corporate and operational strategies.
    Keywords: Airlines Scheduling Strategy; Taxonomies; Cross Regional Analysis; Airline Operations; K-means Analysis.

  • Justification of Technology Innovation Implementation in Indian MSMEs using AHP   Order a copy of this article
    by Davinder Singh, J.S. Khamba, Tarun Nanda 
    Abstract: Small enterprises typically make a large contribution to manufacturing employment in poor countries. However, the developmental contribution of most of them is limited to generating subsistence employment of last resort. Hence, in the face of fast labor force growth and limited employment absorption in other sectors, developing country governments have mounted efforts to improve productivity and earnings in these firms. MSMEs constitute 80% of all enterprises globally. They contribute in providing job opportunities, act as supplier of goods and services to large organizations. MSMEs are defined by a number of factors and criteria, such as location, size, age, structure, organization, number of employees, sales volume, worth of assets, ownership through development and technology. The present study explores the significant of various factors contributing towards manufacturing performance enhancement of small firms using Analytical Hierarchy Process.
    Keywords: Technology Innovation; AHP; Manufacturing Performance; MSMEs.

  • An Integrated Conceptual Model for Achieving Global Quality Service in Healthcare Establishments   Order a copy of this article
    by Gopi D, Pal Pandi A, Rajendra Sethupathi P.V, Paranitharan K.P, Jeyathilagar D 
    Abstract: Ever rising patients expectations demand quality healthcare service from Health Care Establishments (HCEs) for its sustenance which necessitated developing of a comprehensive quality healthcare model, for measuring the performance of HCEs. So, the authors developed a model called Integrated Quality Healthcare System (IQHS). IQHS is a bundle of the various quality management systems and concepts. It consists of ten important critical factors(CFs), extracted from extant literature reviews. The result has revealed that the critical factor Hospital Culture plays an important role in quality healthcare service, based on the mean values, calculated from the views of stakeholders and customers and the remaining nine CFs should be given priority to attain excellence in healthcare service. The proposed comprehensive model may fulfill the needs of stakeholders and customers in terms of upgraded quality of service, improved healthcare environment, reduced operating cost of HCE, patient satisfaction, patient safety and employees satisfaction.
    Keywords: Healthcare establishment; Quality Management Concepts; Critical Success Factors; IQHS.

  • Reducing Rejections using Six Sigma: A case from Indian automobile component manufacturing industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohit Kaushik, Gaurav Chauhan, Kaliyan Mathiyazhagan, Ravindra Ojha, Mayank Kumar 
    Abstract: Quality is critical in the selection of a product as the customer demands a defect-free product. Six-sigma is a systematic approach based on datafor improvement of the process with an aim to reduce the number of defects to 3.4 parts per million opportunities. The approach has facilitated several companies to enhance the capabilities of their process and thereby improve the quality of their products and services. This paper addresses a cases study which involves the application of Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control (DMAIC) methodology of Six-sigma to reduce the rejections in a connecting rod manufacturing facility. Its implementation has resulted in the reduction of rejection from 1.75% to 0.80% over a period of one year in the manufacturing plant. Due to reduction in rejection the estimated savings is in (to) the order of 0.9 million INR per annum.
    Keywords: Six-sigma; Failure Mode and Effect Analysis; Why-Why Analysis; Single Minute Exchange of Die; Process Capability; and Measurement System Analysis; Reducing Rejections.

  • A Comparative Study of the Determinants of Business and Leisure Travelers Satisfaction and Dissatisfaction   Order a copy of this article
    by Xun Xu, Yibai Li, Allan Cheng Chieh Lu 
    Abstract: Travelers online reviews generate electronic word of mouth, which influences travelers hotel selection and customer demand. These online reviews contain an abundance of information about travelers hotel experiences, delineating their reasons for satisfaction and dissatisfaction. Using a text mining technique and latent semantic analysis, this study identifies business and leisure travelers satisfaction and dissatisfaction determinants and compares their relative importance. This study finds that determinants of business and leisure travelers satisfaction and dissatisfaction have different types and degrees of importance. Understanding specific needs and priorities of each group of customers helps hoteliers improve their performance. Hoteliers can use market segmentation strategies and electronic word of mouth to increase customer demand from specific traveler populations.
    Keywords: Customer perception; business traveler; leisure traveler; service management.

  • PRE AND POST IMPLEMENTATION OF INTEGRATED HEALTH SYSTEM: A CASE STUDY OF LEADING GULF COUNTRY   Order a copy of this article
    by Habib Ullah Khan, Diaa Eldin ELSaied 
    Abstract: Far and wide, the benefits that organizations fetch because of the information technology are well known. However, this not same with all the players of the market as the healthcare domain in witnessing many such incidents, especially in developing countries. Saudi Arabias healthcare industry is one example of this situation. Though there are many initiatives being taken by various bodies to adopt integrated health system in the countries, they are not reaping the expected benefits due to the inefficient management of the implementation procedures. Thus, the present study considered the case of Magrabli Hospitals and Centers to understand the nitty-gritties of the health system implementation. Also, the factors that invigorate the process and the accrued the desired benefits are studied to suggest the prospective works. Along with the qualitative data collected through interaction with all the stakeholders, quantitative data is collected from 65 personnel who are in managerial cadre. Their opinion about the measurable dimensions (process improvement dimension, decision making dimension, financial dimension and operational dimension) is collected. The data is tested using basic descriptive analysis, correlation analysis and paired t-test. The analysis is performed using the statistical package SPSS and results are tested at 5% level of significance. The results revealed that there is much dependency among the sub-systems and they are working inter-twined to deliver the service effectively. The success attained by the implementation is apparent in the rating given to the measurable dimensions before and after the implementation as well as the significance of the results of the paired t-test. The limitations of the study are observed and necessary suggestions are provided for future researchers.
    Keywords: Healthcare Information Technology (HIT); Health Information System (HIS); Process improvement dimension (PD); decision making dimension (DD); financial dimension (FD) and operational dimension (OD).

  • Application of value stream mapping for cycle time reduction in production of link and roller assembly   Order a copy of this article
    by VIJAYAKUMAR MANUPATI, CHAITANYA GANGAL, LEONILDE VARELA, MOHAMMADSADEGH MOBIN 
    Abstract: The advancements in manufacturing organizations are focused in the direction of reducing the cycle times, lead times and different manufacturing costs. Nowadays cycle time reduction is of paramount importance in a manufacturing industry. The customer not only emphasises on the quality of the product but also takes into consideration the timely delivery of the product. This trend has led companies to exploit lean manufacturing principles which concentrate deeply on the reduction of the cycle times. This paper proposes a framework for performance evaluation in the context of Indian manufacturing unit. The proposed framework and the developed methodology is capable of dealing with each stage of the considered manufacturing unit by maximizing the value of the product through minimization of waste. As a first step, the time required for all the processes in manufacturing of the links and rollers had been identified using time and work study. Thereafter, in the second part value stream mapping method (VSM) to determine the value added (VA) and non-value added (NVA) activities in the process. Moreover, to demonstrate the capabilities of the proposed approach, this framework is implemented for performance evaluation of production of links, rollers, and deck roller assembly of Indian manufacturing industry and some managerial insights are derived from the numerical results.
    Keywords: Lean thinking concepts; value stream mapping; cycle time.

  • Drivers of Supply Chain Transparency and its effects on Performance Measures in the Automotive Industry: Case of a Developing Country   Order a copy of this article
    by Waqar Ahmed, Muhammad Omar 
    Abstract: In this competitive era, smooth flow of Information with clarity and consistency has gain lot of importance to improve effective and timely decision making for managing logistics and distribution. This research investigates the factors which are important to augment supply chain transparency. The study further examined the impact of supply chain transparency on the various supply chain performance indicators. Partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) is applied through SmartPLS3.4.2 for an empirical validation of the proposed research model and to identify the factors contributing supply chain transparency (SCT) and outcomes of SCT on four performance indicators (i.e. operations, supplier, relational and technical performance). The questionnaire survey was utilized in this study. The survey was distributed to around 440 supply chain professionals associated with automotive companies in Pakistan, with 218 valid responses collected with response rate of 49.5 per cent. The result reveals that supply chain transparency has a significant positive effect on various dimensions of supply chain performance (SCP). SCT influences high on Operational performance and relational performance. It is further confirmed that strategies and factors like disintermediation (DI), formulization (FRM), supply chain coordination (SCC), supplier integration (SI) and trust (TR) contributes significantly on supply chain transparency (SCT). While FRM and SCC are the highest contributor in maintaining SCT. This paper is the enhanced framework to measure the drivers and practices that impacts supply chain transparency and also explains the relationship of SCT with the various performance dimensions in the automotive sector of developing economy. The study will be beneficial for supply chain specialists in formulating strategies to improve distribution performance through improving transparency in their multitier supply chains.
    Keywords: Supply Chain Transparency; Supply chain visibility; Disintermediation; System Integration; Trust; Formalization; Relationship; Operational; Technical and Performance; PLS SEM; Automotive sector.

  • Emigrants motivation business model for intention to participate in the Malaysia My Second Home program (MM2H)   Order a copy of this article
    by K. Jayaraman, Shin Yuin Khu, Shaian Kiumarsi 
    Abstract: In the modern days of advancement, people prefer to migrate from one country to another for change in lifestyle and better prospects in social, cultural, economic and environmental standards. A second home consideration deserves almost the same feeling of thoughts and importance as the primary residence. The Malaysian government is promoting Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) program to attract more foreigners to settle down in Malaysia in order to boost the macro economy and tourism industry. The present article investigates the intention of Japanese and Indonesians towards choosing Malaysia as a second home. About 97 respondents participated in the primary survey of which 51 (52.6%) were Indonesians and 46 (47.4%) were Japanese. The respondents from both Indonesia and Japan have expressed almost similar average intention scores with moderate response to consider Malaysia as their second home. The findings of the study reveal that economic environment, social environment, political status, and retirement life were among the significant factors on the intention to consider getting a second home ownership. Surprisingly, the factors of attraction, safety and security were not found to be significant. It is understandable that only international tourists might consider destination attractiveness to be an important factor, but not second home seekers. Furthermore Malaysia is a safer country to live, compared to other ASEAN countries due to its latest sophistication and multiethnic culture.
    Keywords: Second Home; Social Environment; Attraction; Retirement Life; Safety and Security; Migration; Malays.

  • Customers perceptions and reactions in waiting lines: lessons from a contact service environment in a developing economy   Order a copy of this article
    by Alexander Appiah, Cosmos Benjamin Osei 
    Abstract: This study took interest in evaluating customers perceptions in waiting lines, measured by time wastage, neglect and boredom and their innate reactions, measured by service abandonment intentions towards satisfaction, loyalty and reuse behaviour during and after service experience. We collected data from bank customers in five regions of Ghana. 251 out of 309 questionnaires distributed were returned and found usable for data analysis. Our findings reflect the banking industry of Ghana characterized by little service differentiation and similar customer characteristics across service firms. This studys findings validate extant works on service firms focus on their specific business dimensions while relegating the customer.
    Keywords: perceptions; reactions; waiting lines; contact service; abandonment intent; satisfaction; loyalty; reuse behaviour; developing economy.

  • Application of Multi Grade Fuzzy and ANFIS approaches for performance analysis of Lean Six Sigma system with sustainable considerations   Order a copy of this article
    by Ben Ruben R, S. Vinodh, Asokan P 
    Abstract: Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is a data driven world-class manufacturing strategy that aims at improving the firms competitiveness and operational performance through reduction of waste and process variation. Sustainable manufacturing aims at creation of manufactured products through economically viable processes that have minimal negative environmental impacts thus conserving natural resources and energy. In recent days, modern manufacturing firms are experiencing a paradigm shift where their core focus is to enhance their quality level with zero defects and also to improve their sustainable performance. In an aid to achieve this, manufacturing firms have started to adopt both LSS and sustainable manufacturing strategies in order to attain integrated benefits. After implementing the integrated strategies successfully, it is necessary to measure the performance of such systems to track the improvements and their sustenance. This article reports a research carried out to analyze the performance of LSS system integrated with sustainability considerations in manufacturing firms using Multi Grade Fuzzy (MGF) and Adaptive Neuro Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) approaches. During this research, a performance assessment model consisting of 6 first level dimensions and 30 Second level dimensions was designed to assess the performance of LSS with sustainability considerations. Data pertaining to the assessment was gathered from a manufacturing firm and computations were performed subsequently. The score based on MGF approach is found to be 6.74 and that of ANFIS approach is 6.51. Based on the output score of both the approaches, the case organization was found to possess Strong LSS performance with sustainability considerations. Based on the computed score, improvement actions were recommended and implemented subsequently for further improving the performance level. The study could facilitate improvement in LSS performance incorporated with sustainability aspects.
    Keywords: Lean Six Sigma; Sustainable Manufacturing; Performance Evaluation; Multi grade Fuzzy; ANFIS.

  • An optimal policy for three-tier supply chain for processing an agricultural product with a stochastic demand   Order a copy of this article
    by S. M. Shahidul Islam, Md. Abdul Hoque 
    Abstract: Processed agricultural products are very common nowadays. Control of the management cost of these products plays an important role in delivering them to customers with reasonable prices. There are a few works on controlling this management cost in the literature. However, they are limited to a two-tier supply chain (SC) consisting of a single-manufacturer and a single-retailer. This study presents an optimal policy to a three-tier SC of processing an agricultural product with a stochastic demand, consisting of a single seasonal supplier, a single manufacturer and multiple retailers. A safety stock is maintained to meet extra demand. The objective is to identify the number of shipments and the shipment sizes in a cycle to be delivered to the manufacturer and the retailers in order to minimize the chain-wide costs of ordering, setup, shipment and holding. Both the algebraic and the classical calculus methods of solution to the problem are presented. We summarize both the methods in an algorithm using parallel multiple jumps technique to obtain global optimal integral solutions to problems. They provide the same solution to each of the numerical problems studied, two of which are presented here. Managerial insight of this model is highlighted with a numerical illustration.
    Keywords: Agricultural product; inventory; lot size; stochastic demand; supply chain.

  • Leader Member Exchange (LMX) leading Service employee desired job outcomes and performance: An Indian evidence   Order a copy of this article
    by Mushtaq Siddiqi, Manvinder Tandon, Owais Ahmed 
    Abstract: Leader member exchange theory, being an emergent theory in leadership literature, has been associated with several desired job outcomes in past. However, least research is conducted regarding job outcomes like service employee satisfaction, trust and service performance particularly in an Asian context. To plug the gap, the current study examines leader member exchange in relationship with desired employee job outcomes like employee satisfaction and trust and its influence on service performance. The current study is also an endeavour to be first research study examining the relationship in Indian service industry with integration of insurance, banking and postal service organizations. The study is conducted in Kashmir region, the northern most part of India that offers valuable findings, implications and suggestions regarding betterment of leader member exchange quality, desired job outcomes and employee service performance.
    Keywords: Leader Member Exchange; Job outcomes; job satisfaction; Employee trust; Service Performance.

  • Automated banks service quality in developing economy: empirical evidences from India   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohd Sadiq, Mohd. Adil, Mohammed Naved Khan 
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to examine customers perceived service quality, customer satisfaction, positive word of mouth (+WOM) and problems encountered at Automated Teller Machine (ATMs) of Indian retail banks. It also attempts to propose a modified and refined Parasuramans SERVQUAL scale relevant for the Indian context as also suggests a comprehensive model for measuring automated service quality at bank ATMs. A structured questionnaire, drawn together from literature, was used to collect data from a total of 219 ATM customers. The proposed refined scale has been tested for dimensionality, reliability, and validity and the research model was tested for validation through Structural equation model (SEM) using LISREL 8.50. Research results indicate that expectations of ATM patrons in India were not being fully met. The highest gap score was observed for dimension convenience followed by tangibles. Results also show that service quality and customer satisfaction effect WOM positively and significantly while problem encountered had a negative impact on customer expectations.
    Keywords: Service quality; Bank; ATM; Automated teller machine; CFA; Confirmatory Factor Analysis; India.

  • Maximizing Manufacturers Profit in a Dual-channel Supply Chain with Disruption Risk   Order a copy of this article
    by Chieh Lee, Xun Xu, Chia-Chi Hsu 
    Abstract: With the rapid development of the e-commerce, more customer demands are generated through online sales channels. Together with traditional sales channels through retailers, the manufacturers need to implement the dual supply chain management to enhance their performance. However, both of the online and traditional sales channels might face various sources of disruption risks under the globalization and the high complexity of the supply chain network. Using a theoretical modeling approach, three industrial cases, and sensitivity analysis, we discuss the optimal pricing strategy of manufacturer in the dual channel supply chain with disruption risks. We find that the influential factors of maximizing profits of a manufacturer include its pricing strategy, product market share, disruption risk probabilities, and product distribution proportion between the online and offline channels.
    Keywords: supply chain management; dual channel; supply chain risk; pricing; disruption risk.

  • A checklist for readiness evaluation of Participants area of AACSB standards   Order a copy of this article
    by Goutam Kundu, Jyoti Majumdar 
    Abstract: This paper aims to develop a checklist by carrying out a detailed analysis of the requirements of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) standards relating to the participants area, for evaluation of implementation readiness in a business school setting. The study adopted a multi-method approach for developing the final version of the checklist. The paper presents an articulated procedure that was followed for the development of the checklist. The checklist was developed and applied over the course of systematic reviews in a business school setting. The present study has developed the checklist comprising the requirements of the standards related to the participants area only. In the near future, the authors intend to develop checklists for the remaining areas of AACSB standards. The checklist presented in this paper should be useful to the academic institutions that are planning to implement AACSB standards for accreditation or are interested in changing their current processes following AACSB standards.
    Keywords: Checklist; Accreditation; AACSB; Standard; Participants.

  • The impact of service quality in postal services: The mediating role of self-service technology   Order a copy of this article
    by Salmi Mohd Isa, Shaian Kiumarsi 
    Abstract: This research explores the adoption of self-service technologies (SST) among customer in the postal service industry, specifically in postal service in Malaysia. A structured questionnaire was designed to elicit customer responses. Data were collected from 268 respondents but only 260 were found usable for the data analysis. The responses were analysed using the VB-SEM statistical technique using Smart-PLS software towards testing the proposed model. The research findings found that responsiveness, assurance and self-service technologies have significant relationships with customer satisfaction. In terms of mediation effect of SST, only reliability was found to have a positive relationship with customer satisfaction and SST were found to partially mediate the relationship of SERVQUAL dimensions and customer satisfaction. This study contributes to literature in the postal service industry especially in Malaysia in managing their customer satisfaction. It is evident that responsiveness drives the satisfaction of customers. The SST introduced by post office in Malaysia is useful tools for customers.
    Keywords: Service Quality; Customer Satisfaction; Self-Service Technology; Postal Service.

  • The Impact of Emotional Intelligence on Work Life Balance Among the Faculty Members Performance in the Private Universities using Multivariate Analysis, Tamil Nadu, India - An Empirical Study   Order a copy of this article
    by Vasumathi Arumugam, Sagaya Mary T, Kameswara Rao P 
    Abstract: In todays competitive scenario of educational institutions, the ability to work with emotion is an vital part of any individuals skill set. The excellence in the performance of work is achieved at the cost of the personal life. Any human being expects an excellent living, it requires a balance between work life and family life becomes inevitable. Emotional Intelligence is an essential factor responsible for better performance in work and family life and it facilitate to minimize the stress. In this regard, the researchers have selected three private universities for the study to find out the impact of Emotional Intelligence on Work Life Balance among the faculty members performance in Tamil Nadu, India. The Discriminant analysis proved that there is a significant association between the universities and the determinants of EI and WLB. The conjoint analysis revealed the important attributes of EI and WLB and the best and least possible combinations for the impact of EI on WLB. The study found that the faculty members with high EI would plan their work properly which would helpful in avoiding long working hours and conducting meeting after office hours.
    Keywords: Emotional Intelligence; Work Life Balance; Life Work Balance; Conflict; Stress and Performance.

  • Element-Capacity Difference Algorithm for Optimal Bin Packing   Order a copy of this article
    by Deep Shah, Aakash A, Vimal Samsingh 
    Abstract: In this paper, we consider the NP -complete problem of 1-D bin packing. In the Bin Packing Problem, a set of numbers or elements that need to be loaded in the bins are considered. The total load of the elements in any bin must not exceed the bin size or bin capacity. These elements must be packed or loaded in the bins in such a way that there is minimum amount of space left in it, and also the number of bins to be used is minimized. We present a new algorithm, which helps in tackling the bin packing problem, by giving optimal solutions in minimum time. The currently used algorithms require the elements to be sorted before loading. Our algorithm works in a way that avoids the sorting operation before loading, giving the same best fit results.rn
    Keywords: Keywords—Bin Packing; Sorting; Optimal Solution; Element Capacity Difference.

  • Multi-Objective Assembly Line Balancing Problem Under Uncertainty using Genetic Algorithm   Order a copy of this article
    by Ferdous Sarwar 
    Abstract: This paper addresses the single-model multi-objective assembly line balancing (SALBP) problem with fuzzy processing time. A fuzzy optimization model is formulated for the problem. In the classical mathematical formulation of SALBP, the relevant data are considered deterministic. But, the data of the real world problems are imprecise, vague or uncertain, and then the input data can be only estimated as within uncertainty and this uncertainty may be represented by a fuzzy number. The concept of fuzzy numbers is introduced to treat imprecise data, such as the processing time of each task. Due to the NP-hard nature of the ALB problem, heuristics are generally used to solve real life cases. In this paper, an efficient heuristic have been proposed to solve the fuzzy multi-objective ALB problem. The proposed heuristic is Genetic Algorithm (GA) based with a special chromosome structure that is efficient to handle fuzzy job time through the evolution process. As the proposed algorithm finds out the optimum solution as a trade-off among several objectives, it outperforms the existing heuristics on several test cases. The proposed algorithm can be effectively used in the design phase of an assembly line.
    Keywords: Assembly Line Balancing; Genetic Algorithms; Multi-objective optimization; Fuzzy numbers.

  • A Study on the Supplier Selection for Outsourcing in Irans Railway   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohammad Mehdi Movahedi, Nima Saeedi, Mehdi Fathabadi 
    Abstract: In today's competitive environment, industries are more vulnerable to economic changes. To help them keep better quality, higher productivity, and low costs, it is necessary to have a right strategy. Therefore, the goal of this paper is to introduce outsourcing strategy as a tool for enhancing the organizational productivity by selecting the best supplier. Consequently, first, 30 suppliers that provide services/goods to Irans Railway were selected and the amount of products/services provided by each supplier were determined in respect to the goals set by the company. Then the most important criteria were determined for the evaluation of the suppliers of Irans railway. Following, the suppliers' efficiency degree was determined using DEA method. Finally, the suppliers were ranked through crossing efficiency matrix. The results indicate that the supplier 25 is the most efficient followed by the suppliers 2 and 4 respectively.
    Keywords: Railway; Outsourcing; Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA); Supplier Selection; Goal Programming (GP),.

  • The effect of the internet banking service quality on customer satisfaction (case study: Refah bank in Tehran)   Order a copy of this article
    by Ali Nazeri, Rahman Soofifard, Mohsen Ebrahimi, Ladan Bbayof 
    Abstract: With the advent of electronic banking services, quality of electronic services in electronic banking as a known competitive advantage has direct impact on customer satisfaction. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of the internet banking service quality dimensions on customer satisfaction of Refah Bank in Tehran. Hypotheses of this study investigate the effect of features, functionality and beauty of the site, reliability, responsiveness, performance, efficiency, privacy, information security, system availability, ease of use, customers openness towards green technology and services of internet banking on bank customers satisfaction. The population of the study was all customers of Refah bank branches in Tehran in a sample of 400 people in which a standard questionnaire of 58 questions was administered among them. Hypotheses testing were done by PLS Smart structural equation modeling software. The results show that the eleven-dimensional electronic banking service quality of customer satisfaction in the study of e-banking services had a positive effect. In the meantime performance (fulfillment) factor has the greatest impact on the bank customers satisfaction.
    Keywords: quality banking services; internet banking; customer satisfaction; partial least squares method.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2019.10007840
     
  • Design of cellular manufacturing system for power press industry to reduce total traveling time by hybrid algorithm   Order a copy of this article
    by Manoharan Shunmugasundaram, V. Anbumalar, P. Anand, P. Sivakumar, S. Nagarajan 
    Abstract: Part family identification and Machine Cell formation are the two major steps in Cellular Manufacturing System. Cell formation is a complex process and there are several approaches for this purpose viz., Array based clustering, Agglomerative clustering, Mathematical programming, Graph partitioning, and Non traditional methods. The problem with first two approaches is that the quality of the solution is dependent of the initial part machine incidence matrix. A new algorithm for cell formation combining the techniques of array based clustering and agglomerative clustering is proposed. The above Proposed method is tested by using standard problems and compared with other method results for the same standard problems. Grouping efficiency is the most widely used measures of quality for Cellular Manufacturing Systems. The proposed algorithm is used to form manufacturing cells in a power press industry to increase productivity by reducing total travelling time.
    Keywords: Cellular layout; Array based clustering; Agglomerative clustering; Hybrid algorithm; Total traveling time.

  • Classification of the critical success factors in sustainable supply chain management using interpretive structural modeling   Order a copy of this article
    by Hadi Shirouyehzad, Marsa Ghafourian 
    Abstract: Due to the negative effects of the current way of life and industry on mankinds future, sustainable development has become one of the main factors in organizations success. One of the strategies to achieve sustainable development is sustaining the supply chain of the organization and industries. Identification of critical success factors is essential for any organization in order to achieve the organizations goals and missions. This study tried to identify critical success factors of sustainable supply chain to prioritize and determine the level of each factor. Success factors were extracted using literature review and experts opinion. Then, the interpretive structural modeling was used to determine relationships and levels of each factor. Cultural and language differences was identified as the most influential factor and information and transparency was identified as the most impressionable factor in sustaining the supply chains. In addition, the results indicate a relatively strong relationship between identified factors.
    Keywords: supply chain management (SCM); sustainability; critical success factors (SCFs); interpretive structural modeling (ISM).

  • Electronic Word-of-Mouth in the Mobile Service Sector: The Role of Service Quality and Customer Emotional Response   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohammed Alsaggaf, Kevin Lu, Xiaoying Li 
    Abstract: It is essential for mobile service providers to deliver high quality services that could attain customers positive emotions, as this will encourage them to spread positive eWOM in several platforms about the service. However, previous telecom service studies have failed to examine the impact of service quality on eWOM intention through customers emotions. This study aimed to investigate the effects of service quality on electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM) via customer emotional responses as mediators in the mobile provider industry. We developed a research framework based on stimuli-organism-response (SOR) theory that helps to analyse the aspects of service quality affecting customer behavioural intention. This research adapted a questionnaire for quantitative data collection. A total of 582 surveys are analysed using structural equation modelling. There are three main findings; first, this study indicated that service quality tangibility and empathy are not associated with customer pleasure. We further found that there is a positive relationship between customer pleasure from service quality and intention to engage in online reviewing. Third, across genders, there is a significant difference in the relationship between service quality and eWOM intention via the mediation of emotional response. Accordingly, the research findings enhance our understanding of how to evaluate the relationship between service quality, customer emotional response, and eWOM.
    Keywords: Service quality; Electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM); Customer emotion; Customer behaviour; Structural equation modelling (SEM).

  • Manufacturing Excellence in the Indian Automobile Industry through Sustainable Lean Manufacturing: A Case Study   Order a copy of this article
    by Naveen Kumar, Kaliyan Mathiyazhagan 
    Abstract: Sustainable Lean Manufacturing (SLM) in automobile Industry is an important pillar of survival in this competitive world. SLM has focused on profit of an organization by ensuring sustained good quality products and meeting customer demands. In a competitive era, the present study focuses on developing a practical implementation of SLM and explains its practical implementation through descriptive models drawn by the researchers. This study focuses on implementation of lean manufacturing in the automotive industry in the assembly, machining and moulding shops. It special deals with all kinds of waste (overproduction, inventory, waiting, rework, and rejection) in the industry. After analyzing the waste level, it focuses on factors important to implementing lean manufacturing and provides a draft list of factors in the areas where the industry is found to have some gaps. With the help of an earlier research model, the lean implementation Gantt chart is made following the researchers guidelines. After lean implementation, waste in industry is reduced as per the target setting; and the focus now shifts to sustainability of the implemented action. The changes added for sustainability of the system consitute guidelines so that if there is any change in organization actions, sustainability is still ensured.
    Keywords: Manufacturing excellence; Sustainable lean manufacturing; Waste; Automotive industry; Case study.

  • The Impact of Management Social Intelligence on Socio-Cultural Advertising Effectiveness (Case Study: Socio-Cultural Advertising of Isfahan City)   Order a copy of this article
    by Seyyed Fathallah Amiri Aghdaei, Hadi Teimouri, Seyed Hasan Hosseini 
    Abstract: This study was conducted to analyze the effect that social intelligence of managers could have on socio-cultural advertising effectiveness in a number of organizations engaged in socio-cultural advertising in Isfahan city. The statistical population consisted partly of the executive officers and experts in 9 selected organizations who were involved in development of socio-cultural advertising. In addition, for assessment of the socio-cultural advertising effectiveness, the citizens exposed to this advertising were addressed as well. Due to the large number of the latter group, using Cochran formula for infinite population the sample size was set at 320. For collection of the required information, two standard questionnaires, The Troms
    Keywords: socio-cultural advertising effectiveness; social intelligence; social awareness; social information processing; social skill.

  • Inventory lot-size policies for deteriorating items with expiration dates, advance payments and shortages under trade credit   Order a copy of this article
    by Tharani Subbaih, Uthayakumar R 
    Abstract: For deteriorating items with seasonal demand, it is assumed that the payment will be made to the supplier in three consignment such as a fraction ofrnacquisition cost is prepaid and the remaining cost is divided into two payments.rnThis paper provides a better bound for both vendor and buyer and also morernbenecial for both retailer and buyer which does not concern the status of thernmember . The model is derived under three dierent circumstances dependingrnon the time of occurrence of shortages, credit period and cycle time. We thenrncharacterize the optimal replenishment cycle time and optimal total cost byrnproviding the theorem and lemmas . Finally we run numerical examples tornillustrate the problem and provide some managerial insights.
    Keywords: Inventory; Prepayments; Trade credit; Maximum lifetime.

  • Identifying and evaluating cognitive factors influencing the acceptance of mobile payment services   Order a copy of this article
    by Arash Shahin, Hamze Kazemi Mahyari 
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to identify and evaluate cognitive factors influencing the acceptance of mobile payments services (MPS). For this purpose, eight cognitive factors have been identified, a conceptual framework has been developed and the construct relations have been determined. Data has been collected from 2010 Iranian students. Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) has been used for data analysis. Findings imply that perceived compatibility, perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, perceived risk, perceived security and trust and perceived enjoyment influenced acceptance of MPS. Perceived expressiveness and perceived trust did not influence acceptance of MPS.
    Keywords: Cognitive factors; Mobile payment service; Technology acceptance; Structural Equation Modeling.

  • Evaluation and Improvement of Service Quality in Information Technology Department of a Detergent Production Company Using the SERVQUAL Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohammad Javad Ershadi, Seyed Taghi Akhavan Niaki, Razieh Sadeghee 
    Abstract: Nowadays organizations are seeking for effective ways to compete with their competitors. The information technology (IT) service is an integral parts involved in internal services, the ones usually associated with high costs. Therefore, performance appraisal of the personnel of IT department is one of the most important tasks of organization managers. In this paper, various common appraisal models used to evaluate service quality are first introduced. Then, the SERVQUAL model is selected and customized for quality evaluation of IT departments. A case study is next presented for the application of the SERVQUAL model in performance appraisal of the IT department of a detergent producer company. In addition, a gap analysis is used to investigate the weaknesses and strengths of the IT unit. To this aim, a radar chart is applied on the data obtained from questionnaires. Analyzing the results shows that the courtesy is the main influential factor in view of the customers followed by reliability, empathy, tangibility, assurance, and responsiveness, respectively. Finally, some corrective actions are proposed to improve the performance of the IT staff.
    Keywords: Service quality; Information Technology; SERVQUAL; Gap analysis.

  • Evaluation of improvement programmes in a job-shop context by simulation models   Order a copy of this article
    by Paolo Renna 
    Abstract: The continuous improvement is important to increase the companys competitiveness in today's market. The decision on the improvement programs areas is relevant to improve the enterprises performance. It is essential where to focus the investment efforts available among the different areas of the manufacturing system. In this paper, the main areas considered are: process time variability, reliability of the machines, set-up times and product defects. This paper tests the improvement programmes centralised, distributed and proposes a proportional policy by simulation models in a job shop context. The simulation experiments consider the following issues: the process time of the bottleneck, the number of bottlenecks, the degree of variation in process time, the average utilisation of the manufacturing system and the process time of the bottlenecks. The simulation results highlight how the choice of the improvement policy is not relevant when the manufacturing system has a low or high utilisation. The centralized approach leads to better results, while the proposed approach is competitive when the bottleneck may shift from one machine to another.
    Keywords: job shop; allocation of improvement programmes; continuous improvement; discrete event simulation.

  • An Empirical Study on Integrated Manufacturing System Practice in Indian Industries - A Structural Equation Modeling Approach   Order a copy of this article
    by Paranitharan K.P, Ramesh Babu T 
    Abstract: In the context of severe competition, the manufacturing organisations are looking for an appropriate system to achieve sustainable development, which has prompted to develop a suitable integrated system. The authors have developed an integrated model namely Integrated Manufacturing Business Excellence System (IMBES). This model which is a comprehensive one blended with the global manufacturing management concepts namely ISO 9000:2008 QMS, ISO 14001:2000 EMS, OHSMS 18001:2007, knowledge management, total quality management, total productivity management, Six-Sigma, lean manufacturing, agile manufacturing and sustainable manufacturing by drawing ten critical factors from the above concepts. The main objective of this paper is to study the relationship between the critical factors of IMBES and the manufacturing performance through managers perspective. The result of the empirical study revealed that the ten successful critical factors have significant positive relationship with IMBES implementation to achieve manufacturing performance excellence if practiced in a full-fledged manner.
    Keywords: Integrated Management System; IMBES; Integrated Model; Structural Equation Modeling; Manufacturing Industry.

  • The Impact of Modern Information Technology on Customer Satisfaction Considering the Mediating Role of Organizational Health   Order a copy of this article
    by Naser Moghaddasi 
    Abstract: Today, an organizations survival and continuity is based on use of information technology (IT). Without IT, using modern approaches in the organization and even competition with others would be impossible. With respect to the many developments in IT, the customers of each organization would expect more from them. The goal of current research is assessing the impact of modern IT on customer satisfaction with mediating role of organizational health. This research is categorized among the descriptive-correlational and an applied in the nature. All consumers of oil products including 267 people have been chosen. The presented model tested by use of structural equation modelling, specifically, partial least squares (PLS). Based on the hypothesis testing, ease of use, speed, accuracy, reliability and accountability as six components of modern IT have positive and meaningful impact on organizational health. Finally, the impact of organizational health on customer satisfaction confirmed. Based on these findings, it can be said that the modern technologies have positive influence on organizational health which leads to customer satisfaction. Our approach and findings have significant implications for managing customer satisfaction in the services industry.
    Keywords: modern IT; electronic services; customer satisfaction; organizational health.

  • Improvising the six row manually operated paddy seedling transplanter through value engineering   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohan M, Sundararaj G, Devadasan S.R., Murugesh R 
    Abstract: In this paper, a research in which value engineering principles were applied to improvise a six row manually operated paddy transplanter has been reported. While pursuing this research, the classical approach called value engineering job plan was followed. By following this approach, the value of six row manually operated paddy transplanter was enhanced by carrying out the activities systematically and scientifically in eight phases by using appropriate tools. On executing these phases, the cost and weight of the parts involved in manufacturing the six row manually operated paddy transplanter were reduced by 38.79 percentage and 39.93 percentage respectively.Furthermore, eight components have been removed in the newly improvised six row manually operated paddy transplanter. The outcomes of the research reported in this paper have revealed that the application of value engineering job plan has facilitated to enhance the value of the six row manually operated paddy transplanter.
    Keywords: Paddy transplanter; value engineering; creativity; idea generation; brainstorming; team building.

  • Application of Fuzzy Axiomatic Design for prioritization of sustainable manufacturing strategies for an automotive component manufacturing scenario   Order a copy of this article
    by Thirupathi RM, S. Vinodh, Priyanka Shinde 
    Abstract: Sustainable manufacturing enables automotive component manufacturing organizations to develop products with minimal environmental impact. Appropriate strategies need to be deployed to facilitate development of ecofriendly products and processes. This article presents a study in which eight sustainable manufacturing strategies were analyzed and prioritized using Fuzzy Axiomatic Design (FAD) methodology. Triangular fuzzy numbers were employed for expressing the inputs related to criteria of sustainable manufacturing, as real world experience has difficulty in measurement together. Expert team inputs were obtained and Total Information Content (TIC) values were calculated for all strategies. Strategy with least TIC value namely Auditing tools was the best alternative. The prioritized strategies were being subjected to implementation in the case organization. Effectiveness verification of the implementation need to be carried out after a defined period by the organization through actual measurement.
    Keywords: Sustainability; Sustainable Manufacturing; Fuzzy Axiomatic Design; Triangular Fuzzy Numbers; Strategy; Automotive industry.

  • Linkages of QMS and Soft EMS: Perceptions of Operations Managers as Modelled by SEM   Order a copy of this article
    by Amjad Khalili, Md Yusof Ismail, A.N.Mustafizul Karim, Mohd Radzi Che Daud 
    Abstract: Empirical studies in the contemporary Operations Management (OM) literature are found to be inadequate to explore whether the ISO management standards specifically, Quality Management System (QMS) and Environmental Management System (EMS) are integrated together in the same enterprise or not. This paper aims at investigating the linkages among the QMS and Soft dimension of Environmental Management System (SEMS) and establishing their associative relationships. In this context a conceptual model is initially developed and subsequently examined in the Malaysian manufacturing industries in an empirical manner. The primary data, gathered from a sample of 329 Malaysian industries through a structured questionnaire, were analyzed using techniques from both SPSS 22 and Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). Both Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) were utilized from SPSS 22 and AMOS 22 respectively. Findings show that the postulated hypothesis is both statistically and practically significant. Hence, the hypothesis is supported which reflects that both the ISO standards (QMS and Soft EMS) can be integrated together in the same enterprise, and reiterates provisions for manufacturers to endure practicing these management standards to sustain their operations
    Keywords: QMS; Soft EMS; AMOS; integration; Malaysia.

  • A conceptual framework for the assessment of sustainability indicators using IF-THEN rules approach: A case study   Order a copy of this article
    by Jayakrishna Kandasamy, Vinodh Sekar, Vimal KEK 
    Abstract: Emerging business distinguish sustainability as an imperative concept for continued existence in the competitive world. Sustainability is the critical intersection between factors like manufacturing and product design practices and environmental issues and concerns. Being clear about the organizations purpose and taking into deliberation, the needs of all the organizations stakeholders, consumers, human resources, business associates, governments, local communities and the public is important for achieving sustainable development. The objective of this study is to assess the extent of environmental, economic and social indicators prevailing in the case organization using a comprehensive framework. A refined comprehensive model for encompassing sustainability indicators was developed. IF-THEN rules approach was used to evaluate the current sustainability level of an Indian automotive component manufacturing organization. The implementation disclosed that the organization is sustainable to an extent of 60 percent. The article also exemplifies the gaps and proposals for the improvement of the sustainability level. The recognized proposals were subjected to implementation in the case organization.
    Keywords: Sustainable development. Sustainability indicators. Sustainability assessment. IF-THEN approach. Composite sustainability index.Fuzzy methodrn.

  • Collaboration Impact on Social Well-being for Business Sustainability: A Case Study of a Malaysian Water Treatment SME Company   Order a copy of this article
    by H.M. Belal, Siti Norezam Othman, Mohamad Faizal Ahmad Zaidi, Kunio Shirahada 
    Abstract: The significance of sustainability in present-day business is a critical issue. Companies realized that there is a critical need to sustain in global business competition and this depends upon demographic, social, and economic contexts. Many organizations, both in developed and developing economies, are trying to add customer-value solutions by adding the service concept onto their core product with the aim of gaining competitive advantage, which is known as servitization. However, there is a debate that adapting servitization in a product-based company is not always favorable for business sustainability, due to its resources and time-based requirements as well as increasing operational cost. In view of that practical issue, companies need to integrate more of the service concept into their offerings, including service solutions that can enhance social conditions and recipient aspects. Addressing social issues while transforming its well-being service solutions successfully is an arduous task as strategic collaboration and action with appropriate partners are required, of which can be extended to the local government agencies as well. This study demonstrated how collaboration advances the manufacturing-based industry to transform its business structure as a social service-oriented and well-being solution, thereby being able to sustain its business vis-
    Keywords: Service; well-being solution; SMEs; corporate collaboration; water management; sustainability.

  • Exploring Consumer Power Triggers in Retail and Service Settings   Order a copy of this article
    by Apiradee Wongkitrungrueng 
    Abstract: This paper explores service elements that influence consumers sense of power, which is known to affect consumers attitudes, feelings, and behavioural approach/inhibition. A critical incident technique is used to collect data about shoppers experiences. The findings indicate that a consumers sense of power manifests as freedom, respect, and control and can be induced by a consumers own resources as well as the characteristics and behaviours of store atmospherics (design and social factors) and the service protocols guided by the service policy. Understanding power triggers has potential implications for designing and managing service elements to ensure consumer satisfaction with in-store services.
    Keywords: power; control; atmospherics; salesperson behaviours; other customers; service settings.

  • Organizational management through performance indicators   Order a copy of this article
    by Liane Mahlmann Kipper, Elpidio Oscar Benitez Nara, Julio Cesar Mairesse Siluk, Cristian Caurio, Andre Luiz Emmel Da Silva, Juliana Ipê Da Silva 
    Abstract: The performance indicators are essential for showing with clear measures the company's performance, according to the information needs exposed by the administration, however is a need to move forward in the process to promote the strategic alignment and prepare them for implementation of the strategy. This research aims to propose a method of support for the improvement of management of companies through the integration of processes with the strategic guidelines. The method was developed from the combination of a strategic management methodology based on performance indicators and process management. The results with the partial application of the method were satisfactory because they show that it extends the vision of the manager and approaches the operational and the strategy. This contributes not only in the case of the organization analyzed, but also for companies from other areas of activity, in order to perform a more effective and competitive management.
    Keywords: Strategy; Measurement of performance; Business Process Management (BPM); Performance Indicators; Balanced Scorecard (BSC); Strategy management.

  • Examining the Service Value Chain of Hypermarket Retail Brand Value in Malaysia   Order a copy of this article
    by Hasliza Hassan, Muhammad Sabbir Rahman, Abu Bakar Sade 
    Abstract: Understanding the behaviour of shoppers in hypermarket retailing has become crucial to discover the new potential to enhance the existing shopping experience. This research focuses on how the hypermarket retail brand value is built through the available service facilities by looking at the experience of shoppers and brand personality through a quantitative cross-sectional study. Based on structural equation modeling analysis, it is found that the shopping experience can be stimulated based on the available hypermarket services that are available in the hypermarket. This, indirectly, can also enhance the overall brand personality and brand value of the hypermarket retail brand. The key factor in developing hypermarket brand value is emphasizing the service facilities that are provided in the hypermarket. The strength of the basics and the enhancement of the service facilities will influence the positive shopping experience and brand personality, which will provide a high return for the brand value. The findings are expected to provide insights for researchers and practitioners concerning the service value chain of hypermarket retail brand value.
    Keywords: experience; hypermarket; personality; retail; shopping; value.

  • Towards the criteria to product-service system: new challenges and contributions   Order a copy of this article
    by Daniel Battaglia, Miriam Borchardt, Giancarlo Medeiros Pereira 
    Abstract: This research analyzes which criteria were considered by the firms when offering a PSS and how these criteria contribute on the business processes and relationships. The research procedures include the identification of the PSS criteria, an academic validation carried out in conjunction with researchers on this field as well as being discussed the results. To literature review, the databases of Scopus, ScienceDirect, CIRP Annals, and Procedia CIRP were used. The study indicates that the incorporation of the product-service culture contributes toward the improvement of the services offered by the companies. The existence of a more effective process integration can be of vital importance to ensure a full PSS delivery. The suitability of the internal processes and the structure go hand in hand with the relationships developed with the business partners for a better adjustment of the market offering. Sustainability invariably results in a more proactive management. The study makes a preliminary reflection on the contribution that PSS criteria brings to the management of businesses and opens up new perspectives and challenges.
    Keywords: Servitization; product-service system; PSS criteria; offering; development; contributions; barriers; challenges; process; relationships.

  • Analysis of used cars remanufacturing in the Philippines using rapid plant assessment   Order a copy of this article
    by Jason Lim Chiu, Candy Lim Chiu 
    Abstract: The used car market in the Philippines is growing steadily. There is increasing demand for used and remanufactured products. It opens the opportunity to small-medium sized remanufacturing enterprises in the country. The purpose of this study is to address the efficiency of Philippine remanufacturing operations in the used car market. Forty-two used car SMEs were successfully recruited to take part in the study. Interviews, field study and documentations were the methods employed for data collection. The study adopted the rapid plant assessment (RPA) to measure remanufacturing operations concerning the difficulty, cost, impact, effects in remanufacturing, leanness and best practice. The use of Kruskal-Wallis test and Wilcoxon signed rank test determined the leanness and best practice in the remanufacturing operations. This study presented an operational design and an avenue for future studies on remanufacturing in developing countries.
    Keywords: product recovery; remanufacturing; used car; Philippines; rapid plant assessment; RPA; efficiency; leanness; reparation; best practice.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2017.10008460
     
  • Supply chain management in traditional industries in Brazil: a relational view   Order a copy of this article
    by Fernando Luiz Emerenciano Viana, José Milton De Sousa-Filho 
    Abstract: This multiple case study investigated supply chain management (SCM) and relational competitive advantage in companies from the textile, footwear and food industries in the northeastern region of Brazil. We used constant comparison method to analyse the data collected by in-depth interviews. Some important constructs of SCM and relational view characterise the relationships, like absence of formal contracts, investments in specific assets, supplier base reduction, long-term relationships, information exchange and knowledge exchange. The relationships with suppliers in the footwear industry have greater alignment to SCM and contribute more significantly to the relational competitive advantage, especially through joint development of materials and products and innovation, which is very important for textile and footwear industries of which are heavily influenced by fashion and, therefore, need the ability to innovate in order to stay competitive in the market. The results permitted the development of three theoretical propositions to be tested in future studies.
    Keywords: supply chain management; SCM; competitive advantage; relational view; emerging markets; emerging economies.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2017.10008461
     
  • Development of a model to analyse the factors affecting RFID technology acceptance in small and medium-sized enterprises   Order a copy of this article
    by Javad Khazaei Pool, Sobhan Asian, S. Mohammad Arabzad, Hadi Balouei Jamkhaneh, Jafar Kia Lashaki 
    Abstract: The purpose of the present study is to analyse the factors affecting radio frequency identification (RFID) technology in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) of Mazandaran Province in Iran. To this end, the effect of the variables of perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness, security, credibility, risk, relative advantage, organisational readiness, as well as cost and attitudes toward use, on the intention of the use of this technology is examined. This study is a descriptive-survey. The participants of the study are managers and production experts of SMEs of Mazandaran Province who are experienced in using the RFID technology or are likely to deal with this technology in the future. Finally, 243 experts were chosen randomly to respond to the questionnaire. In this study, structural equation modelling (SEM) is used for analysing data and testing the hypotheses. The results of the study show that the model which was applied is a strong theoretical model for predicting the RFID technology acceptance.
    Keywords: radio frequency identification; RFID; small and medium-sized enterprises; SMEs; technology acceptance model; TAM; structural equation modelling; SEM.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2017.10008462
     
  • Reduction of spare parts inventory through combined analysis technique - a case study in a public sector company in India   Order a copy of this article
    by M.K. Marichelvam, A. Azhagurajan, M. Geetha 
    Abstract: This paper addresses the inventory control which is one of the most important problems in operations research. Different types of inventory are addressed in the literature. Among them, spare parts inventory which play crucial role are considered in this research. Different approaches were proposed by the researchers in past literature to tackle the inventory problems. The spare parts inventory problems are solved by using a new technique which is called combined analysis technique (CAT) in this paper. In this CAT, different inventory control techniques such as ABC analysis, VED analysis, FSN analysis and SDE analysis are combined with different weightage factors to keep balance between inventory holding cost and stock-outs. Data are collected from a leading public sector company located in the southern part of Tamilnadu, India and the CAT is carried out to bear out the effectiveness of the proposed technique.
    Keywords: inventory; combined analysis technique; CAT; ABC analysis; VED analysis; FSN analysis; SDE analysis.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2017.10008463
     
  • Management tools as a support of cleaner production implementation: a case study in a food industry   Order a copy of this article
    by Syntia Lemos Cotrim, Gislaine Camila Lapasini Leal, Dante Alves Medeiros Filho 
    Abstract: The manufacturing industry, besides being a major consumer of natural resources, is also considered a major generator of waste. It is clear that the adopted mode of production is currently keeping away companies from what is called sustainable development. Thus, the present study analyses cleaner production models and quality management tools in order to obtain a model that integrates these concepts. To characterise the use of the model proposed in this paper, a case study in an industry of the food sector will be presented. This research allowed the analysis of the method applicability and its impact in reducing waste generation and consumption of natural resources. As a result, there was a 17% reduction in the consumption of the raw material (firewood), and a 20% reduction in waste generation (ashes), and consequently the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
    Keywords: quality management tools; cleaner production; waste reduction.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2017.10008464
     
  • Service recovery strategies using social media sites   Order a copy of this article
    by Ying Fan, Run H. Niu 
    Abstract: This study investigates a service organisation's service recovery strategies using social media sites. Based on 347 mini-cases from the Twitter accounts of a sample of major airlines, we conducted qualitative analysis using grounded theory approach. We analysed the relationships between the three elements of service recovery including customers' motivations to complain, service failure types and agent responses. This study offers service providers practical implications to design their recovery strategies. Identification of customers' motivations to complain supports the role of social media sites as a complementary service recovery channel and more importantly, as the final defence of an organisation's service recovery system. The investigation on the relationship between customers' motivations to complain and service failure types indicates that customers utilise social media sites no differently when different failure types occur. However, different failure types do trigger different sets of agent responses. Further, social media agents respond differently according to customers' motivations to complain.
    Keywords: service recovery strategy; social media sites; service operations; qualitative analysis.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJSOM.2017.10008475
     

Special Issue on: 9th IEEE-GCC Economics and Business Engineering

  • Do IT Integration and Decision-Making Integration Influence Service Operation Performance? Empirical Evidence from Electrical & Electronics Distribution Firms   Order a copy of this article
    by Cheng Ling Tan, Wei Lip Tan, Sook Fern Yeo 
    Abstract: This study aims to investigate the relationships between IT integration, decision-making integration, and service operation performance among the electrical and electronic (E&E) distribution firms located in ASEAN. Based on this premise, a model linking IT integration, decision-making integration, and service operation performance are tested. A self-administered questionnaire was employed for data collection. A total of 83 respondents were taking part in this study. Smart Partial Least Square (PLS) and Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) packages were utilized to analyze the data. The analysis results revealed that IT planning and business process integration has a significant relationship with service operation performance. The implication of this study enables the E&E distribution firms in ASEAN to better understand the relationship between IT integration, decision-making integration, and service operation performance.
    Keywords: IT Integration; decision-making integration; service operation performance; electrical and electronic; communication; planning; flexibility; modularity; business process integration; and cross-functional team.

  • Green Supply Chain Performance Evaluation Model for Automotive Manufacturing Industries by Using Eco Balanced Scorecard   Order a copy of this article
    by S. Amaladhasan, Parthiban Palanisamy, R. Dhanalakshmi 
    Abstract: Green Supply Chain Management (GSCM) has emerged as an effective management tool and philosophy for proactive and leading manufacturing organizations. This study uses a set of initial Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for green supply chain evaluation and believed to be appropriate for automotive companies using Eco Balanced Scorecard (EBSC). Balanced scorecard consists of four perspectives such as financial, customer, learning, and growth and internal business process, here fifth perspective as an environment is included. Drawing on the five perspectives of an EBSC, this paper first summarized the evaluation indexes synthesized from the literature relating to green supply chain performance. Furthermore, the relative weights of the chosen evaluation indexes were calculated from Fuzzy-Analytic Hierarchy Process (F-AHP). And, further, the two Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) analytical tools of Fuzzy-VIKOR and Gray Relational Analysis (GRA) were respectively adopted to rank the green supply chain performance and improve the gaps with five industries as an empirical example. Finally, a sensitivity analysis is performed to determine the influence of criteria weights and other factors in the decision-making process. The analysis results highlight the critical aspects of evaluation criteria as well as the gaps to improve green supply chain performance for achieving aspired/desired level. It shows that the proposed Fuzzy-MCDM evaluation model of green supply chain performance using the EBSC framework can be a useful and effective assessment tool.
    Keywords: Green Supply Chain Management; Key performance indicators; Eco Balanced Scorecard; Fuzzy-VIKOR; Gray Relational Analysis.

  • A hyper-heuristic framework for solving the delivery problem with time windows   Order a copy of this article
    by Hiba Yahyaoui, Saoussen Krichen 
    Abstract: We address in this paper a delivery process with time requirements in the supply chain stated as follows: orders launched from customers are centralized and assigned to firms' depots for the delivery process. The consideration of a depot and a set of customers belonging to different firms, is seen as a VRPTW that serves $n$ customers using a subset of vehicles. We implement in this paper a DSS that handles the delivering activity in the supply chain. The DSS embeds a GRASP and Genetic components for generating promising solution in a concurrently run time. In addition we proposed a $VNSH$-based hyper-heuristic that tries to select the most accurate neighborhood at each iteration to apply according to its previous performance. Simulation results are conducted on Solomon's benchmarks. The DSS recorded very competitive results regarding state-of-the-art approaches.
    Keywords: Hybrid Genetic Algorithm; Variable Neighborhood Search; VRPTW; hyper-heuristic.

Special Issue on: 9th IEEE-GCC Economics and Business Engineering

  • An Empirical Study of the Performance of Canadian-Owned Chains of Retail Stores   Order a copy of this article
    by Mohamed Dia, Pawoumodom Matthias Takouda 
    Abstract: The performance of a sample of public Canadian-owned chains of retail stores is assessed using Data Envelopment Analysis over the 15 years spanning the period from 2000 to 2014. Our analysis shows that the chains of food and beverage retail stores presented the best practices. In addition, we found that the impact of the 2008 financial crisis on the performance of the chains of retail stores was statistically significant only for the scale efficiencies. A similar result was found while investigating differences in efficiency between the firms that had international operations and the ones that focused only on the domestic market.
    Keywords: Performance measurement; Data Envelopment Analysis; Efficiency; Retail Industry; Canada.