Title: Outsourcing printing services as a competitive manufacturing strategy: a case study

Authors: Sachin S. Kamble, Sadhana Ghosh

Addresses: National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE), Vihar Lake, Mumbai 400 087, India. ' National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE), Vihar Lake, Mumbai 400 087, India

Abstract: This study addresses the issue of make or buy or partnership decision taken by a biscuit manufacturing firm in India for the printed product wrapper. Currently the biscuit manufacturing company (BMC) prints the product wrapper used for packaging of the biscuits. BMC, the largest manufacturer of biscuits in India, is faced with the dilemma of whether to continue its in-house printing of the product wrapper or outsource it. This paper demonstrates the application of a multi criteria decision-making process for selecting the best from various alternatives such as backward integration, hire and reward and partnership to print the product wrappers. This methodology not only gives importance to the quantitative criteria like economics but also takes into consideration other subjective criteria such as product appeal, perceived quality, level of competencies and union resistance. The methodology has a wider application in operations while outsourcing some of the manufacturing activities.

Keywords: manufacturing strategy; make or buy; outsourcing; multicriteria decision making; MCDM; partnerships; biscuit industry; competitive manufacturing; biscuit packaging; product wrappers; packaging printing.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPM.2010.029773

International Journal of Procurement Management, 2010 Vol.3 No.1, pp.12 - 31

Published online: 02 Dec 2009 *

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