Title: A semantic sense-and-respond approach to managing IT-enabled buyer-supplier relationships: an action research study

Authors: Mala Kaul; Jing Betty Feng; Lars Mathiassen

Addresses: Department of Accounting and Information Systems, College of Business, University of Nevada, Reno, 1664 N. Virginia Street, Reno, NV 89557, USA ' Department of Business Management, Farmingdale State College (SUNY), 2350 Broadhollow Road, Farmingdale, NY 11735-1021, USA ' Center for Process Innovation, J. Mack Robinson College of Business, Georgia State University, 35 Broad Street, NW, Suite 427, Atlanta GA 30303, USA

Abstract: As a reflection of the strategic importance of buyer-supplier relationships in supply chains, information sharing and knowledge exchange have been found to positively impact coordination, transparency, and perception of trust between buyers and sellers. However, our knowledge about IT as an enabler in buyer-seller relationships is limited. Against this backdrop, we examined how a large retailer, BuildSmart, adapted and leveraged a portal to help 'listen to the voice of their suppliers'. Through a collaborative action research project, we developed a semantic sense-and-respond approach to design and implement mechanisms that allowed BuildSmart to continuously sense how suppliers experienced their portal and how to generally improve their supplier relationships. As a result, we present a model for managing IT-enabled buyer-supplier relationships and demonstrate how conceptual modeling can be combined with sense-and-respond thinking to support IT-enabled process management.

Keywords: buyer-supplier relationships; supplier portal; sense-and-respond approach; conceptual modelling; collaborative action research.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBIS.2017.085169

International Journal of Business Information Systems, 2017 Vol.25 No.4, pp.427 - 455

Received: 27 Oct 2015
Accepted: 04 Jan 2016

Published online: 16 Jul 2017 *

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