Hewlett-Packard company unlocks the value potential from time-sensitive returns

V. Daniel R. Guide, Luc Muyldermans, Luk N. Van Wassenhove

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


Hewlett-Packard (HP) and other companies producing short life-cycle products with rapid value erosion squander the opportunity to profit from returned time-sensitive products when they treat them as a nuisance. Instead of focusing on cost minimization and technical quality, they should recognize returns as a value stream and maximize the revenue from smart and fast disposition, proper refurbishment, and prompt resale through the appropriate channels. We worked on a project with Hewlett-Packard's remarketing group to unlock the value potential of time-sensitive returns. We analyzed data using simple calculations to reveal the major drivers and magnitude of potential value recovery, and we used simple operations research flow models to evaluate new design and policy options for the reverse supply chain. HP benefited from an integrated end-to-end business approach to product returns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)281-293
Number of pages13
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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