Role of logistics strategy, coordination and customer service commitment on Chinese manufacturing firm competitiveness

John E. Spillan, Alma Mintu-Wimsatt, Ali Kara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to assess the robustness of the three (Bowersox and Daugherty, 1987) dimensions (process, market and information strategies) of logistics strategy in a Chinese manufacturing environment. In addition, the impact of the three dimensions, coordination and customer service on the organizational competitiveness of Chinese manufacturers firms is explored. Design/methodology/approach: The authors conducted an online survey hosted at and disseminated to members of a manufacturing trade association. A total of 513 completed responses were generated. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and structural equation model (SEM) were used to test the hypothesized relationships in the conceptual model. Findings: The findings suggest that the three dimensions of the Bowersox and Daugherty (1987) were relevant to the Chinese manufacturing environment. The authors also found that the overall logistics strategy measured by the three dimensions as well as coordination and customer service effectiveness positively influenced Chinese manufacturing firms’ competiveness. Research limitations/implications: Further research into logistics and supply chain management may benefit from expanding the understanding to include antecedents and moderating factors (e.g. competition, market turbulence and differences in business environment) into the model. Future studies on cross-cultural logistics/supply chain management logistics may benefit from the application of strategy-structure-process (SSP) approaches similar to those discussed in this manuscript. Practical implications: This study attempted to provide a robust conceptual framework to increase the understanding of the role of logistics/supply chain management strategy and provide insights to managers seeking to improve firm competitiveness. An essential implication of the conceptual model presented in this manuscript is the dynamics of logistics strategy as a competitive tool. Social implications: The findings provide an understanding of how business and manufacturing are operating in various locations in China with opportunities for employment and socio-economic gain among the population of these geographic locations. Having employment can provide a better quality of life and assist the community in developing its opportunities for other groups. Originality/value: As the current Chinese administration seeks to achieve its goal of generating higher value-added production through its “Made in China 2025” initiative, the results the authors represent are quite timely and insightful. Examining manufacturing firms’ logistics strategies (i.e., OLS), coordination and customer service could provide state planners (SOEs) and/or privately owned Chinese manufacturers insights on how to move closer towards their aforementioned goal and achieve global competitiveness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1365-1378
Number of pages14
JournalAsia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 12 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Strategy and Management
  • Marketing


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