Complexity and uncertainty of materials procurement in assembly situations

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In this paper, the complexity and uncertainty in the process of obtaining materials from outside suppliers is studied. A set of explorative case studies is used to examine this uncertainty and complexity experienced in assembly situations as well as the control mechanisms and control variety that are developed to meet this complexity and uncertainty. A framework is introduced for materials procurement and used to establish a number of characteristics which should be taken into account in designing control in different procurement situations. Additionally, a general control structure is developed in order to describe and compare the five companies with respect to the way in which the material flow is controlled.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137 - 152
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Production Economics
Publication statusPublished - Dec-1996
Event8th International Working Seminar on Production Economics - , Austria
Duration: 21-Feb-199425-Feb-1994


  • control
  • materials procurement
  • purchasing

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