Integration of Six Sigma and ISM to improve Supply Chain Coordination – A conceptual framework

Pratima Mishra, Rajiv Kumar Sharma


To achieve competitiveness and to improve supply chain performance, supply chain coordination (SCC) is considered as a key challenge by the companies to satisfy their customers. In today’s turbulent economic environment, SCC is a topic of great significance among business houses because SCC creates understanding, molds human behavior and improve competitiveness.  As observed from literature that the dynamics of global market has resulted in serious pressure and distraction to activities of various supply chain entities i.e. suppliers, manufacturer, distributors, wholesaler, retailers and customers, which ultimately affects the SC performance. Thus, supply chains are exposed to risks due to uncertain and turbulent economic environment. To overcome these challenges, authors in this study developed a conceptual framework for knowledge management based on Six Sigma and ISM which can be used to study various supply chain dimensions be it human, process or quality dimensions. The main advantage of this framework is that it not only helps to understand information regarding the strength and weaknesses of various supply chain entities in a supply chain but also helps to determine the structural relationship among key dimensions of interest. The proposed framework can be applied by industries to model and analyze their processes effectively, compare their performance both within and outside their industry segment and thus improve competitiveness by following knowledge management practices.


Globalization; Knowledge management; Supply chain; Six Sigma; ISM; SEM

Full Text:



Antony, J., Kumar, M. and Tiiwari, M.K. (2005), “An application of six sigma methodology to reduce the engine-overheating problem in an automotive company”, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B. Journal of Engineering Manufacturer, Vol. 219 No. 8, pp. 633-46.

Arshinder, K.A. and Deshmukh, S. G. (2008), “Supply chain coordination: perspective, empirical studies and research directions”, International Journal of Production Economics, Vol. 115 No. 2, pp. 316-335.

Agus, Arawati and Hajinoor Mohd Shukri (2012), “Lean production supply chain management as driver towards enhancing product quality and business performance, Case study of manufacturing companies in Malaysia”, International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 29 No.1, pp. 92-121.

Bala, H. (2013), “The effects of IT-enabled supply chain process change on job and process outcomes: A longitudinal inves-tigation”, Journal of Operations Management, Vol. 31, pp. 450-473.

Borade, A. B. and Bansod, S.V. (2012), “Interpretive structural modeling- based framework for VMI adotion in Indian industries”, International Journal of Advances Manufacturing Technology, Vol. 58, pp. 1227-1242.

Brah, S.A., Wong, J.L. and Rao, B.M. (2000) ‘TQM and business performance in the service sector: a Singapore study’, International Journal of Operations and Production Management, Vol. 20, No. 11, pp.1293–1312.

Burgess, K., Singh, P.J. and Koroglu, R. (2006), “Supply chain management: a structured literature review and implications for future research”, International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 26 No.7, pp. 703-29.

Chang G. (2009), “Total quality management in supply chain”, International Business Research,Vol. 2 No. 4, pp. 81-85.

Chen, I.J. and Paulraj, A. (2004), “Towards a theory of supply chain management: the constructs and measurements”, Jour-nal of Operations Management, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 119-50.

Chong, A.Y.L., Chan, F.T.S., Ooi, K.B. and Sim, J.J. (2011) ‘Can Malaysian firms improve organizational/innovations performance via SCM’, Industrial Management and Data Systems, Vol. 111, No. 3, pp. 410-431.

Dasgupta, T. (2003) ‘Using the six –sigma metric to measure and improve the performance of a supply chain’, Total Quality Management & Business excellence, Vol. 14, No. 3, pp. 355-366.

Gunasekaran, A., Patel, C., & Tirtiroglu, E. (2001), “Performance measures and metrics in a supply chain environment”, International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 21 No. 1/2, pp. 71-87.

Hsu, Meng-Hsiang, Ju, Teresa L., Yen, Chia-Hui, Chang, Chun-Ming (2007), “Knowledge sharing behavior in virtual communities: The relationship between trust, self-efficacy, and outcome expectations”, International Journal of Human Computer Studies, Vol. 65, pp. 153-169.

Jharkharia, S. & Shankar, R. (2005), “IT-enablement of supply chains: understanding the barriesrs”, The Journal of Enter-prise Information Management, Vol. 18 No.1, pp. 11-27.

Karimi, E. and Rafiee, M. (2014), “Analyzing the Impact of Supply Chain Management practices on organizational perfor-mance through Competitive Priorities (Case Study: Iran Pumps Company)”, International Journal of Academic Re-search in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, Vol.4,No.1, pp. 1–1.5

Kanji, G.K. and Wallace, W. (2000) ‘Business excellence through customer satisfaction’, Total Quality Management, Vol. 11, No. 7, pp.979–998.

Kaynak, H. and Hartley, J.L. (2008), “A replication and extension of quality management intothe supply chain”, Journal of Operations Management, Vol. 26, pp. 468-489.

Khang, T.S., Arumugam, V., Chong, A.Y-L., and. Chan F. T.S. (2010) ‘Relationship between supply chain management practices and organizations performance: a case study in the Malaysian service industry’, International Journal of Mod-eling in Operation Management, Vol.1, No. 1, pp. 84-106.

Kim, B. and Oh, H. (2005), “The impact of decisions making sharing between supplier and manufacturer on their collabora-tion performance”, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, Vol. 10 No. 3-4, pp. 223-236.

Koh, S.C. Demirbag, M., Bayraktar, E., Tatoglu, E.and Zaim, S. (2007) ‘The impact of supply chain management practices on performance of SMEs’, Industrial Management & Data Systems, Vol. 107, No. 1, pp. 103-124.

Knowles, G., Whicker, L., Femat, J. H. and Canales, F. D. C. (2005), “A conceptual model for the application of Six Sigma methodologies to supply chain improvement”, International Journal of Logistics: Research and Applications, Vol. 8 No. 1, pp. 51-65.

Lee, H.L. (2000), “Creating value through supply chain integration”, Supply Chain Managemen Review, Vol. 4 No. 4, pp. 30-36.

Li, S., Ragu-Nathan, B., Ragu-Nathan, T. S. and Rao, S. S. (2006) ‘The impact of supply chain management practices on competitive advantage and organizational performance’, International Journal of Management Science, Omega, Vol. 32, pp. 107-124.

Li, Y., Chang, K.C., Chen H.G. & Jiang, J.J. (2010), “Software development team flexibility antecedents”, Journal System Software, Vol. 83, pp. 1726-1734.

Li, Ling, Su, Qin and Chen Xu, (2011), “Ensuring supply chain quality performance through applying the SCOR model”, International Journal of Production Research, Vol. 49 No. 1, pp. 33-57.

Lin, C., Chow, W. S., Madu, C. N., Kuei, Chu-Hua, Yu, Pei Pei (2005), “A structural equation model of supply chain quali-ty management and organizational performance”, International Journal of Production Economics, Vol. 96, pp. 355–365.

Li, S. and Lin, B. (2006), “Accessing information sharing and information quality in supply chain management”, Decision Support Systems, Vol. 42, pp. 1641–1656

Luai E. Jraisat, Ihab H. Sawalha, Quality control and supply chain management: a contextual perspective and a case study. Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 2013, 18 (2), 194 – 207.

Mishra P. and Sharma, R. K. (2011) ‘Reengineering the supply chain human dimensions using six-sigma framework’, Inter-national Journal for Quality research, Vol. 5, No. 3, pp. 193-203.

Nabhani, Farhad and Shokri, Alireza (2009), “Reducing the delivery lead time in a food distribution SMEs through the implementation of six sigma methodology”, Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 20 No. 7, pp. 957-974.

Ooi, K.B., Bakar, N.A., Arumugam, V., Vellapan, L. and Loke, A.K.Y. (2007) ‘Does TQM influence employees job satis-faction? An empirical case analysis’, International Journal of Quality and Reliability Management, Vol. 24, No. 1, pp. 62-77.

Pande, Peter S., Neuman, Robert P. and Cavanach, Roland R., (2000), The Six Sigma Way, McGraw-Hill, New York.

Robinson, C. and Malhotra, M., Defining the concept of supply chain quality management and its relevance to academic and industrial practice. International Journal of Production Economics, 2005, 96 (3), 315–325.

Romano, P. and Vinelli, A., Quality management in supply chain perspectives, strategies and operative choices in a textile-apparel network. International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 2001, 21, 446-60.

Samat, N., Ramayah, T. and Saad, N.H. (2006) ‘TQM practices, service quality, and market orientation – some empirical evidence from a developing country’, Management Research News, Vol. 29, No. 11, pp.713–728.

Simatupang, T.M., Wright. A.C., Sridharan, R. (2002), “The knowledge of coordination for supply chain integration”, Business Process Management Journal, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 289-308.

Singh M.D., Shankar, R., Narain, R and Agrawal, A. (2003), “An interpretive structural modeling of knowledge manage-ment in engineering industries”, Journal of Advances in Management Research, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 28-40.

Singh, R.K., Garg, S.K. and Deshmukh, S.G. (2007), “Interpretive structural modeling of factors for improving competi-tiveness of SMEs”, International Journal of Productivity and Quality Management, Vol. 2 No. 4, pp. 423-40.

Singh, Rajesh, K. (2011), “Developing the framework for co-ordination in supply chain of SME’s”, Business Process Man-agement Journal, Vol. 17 No. 4, pp. 619-638.

Sila, I. and Ebrahimpour, M. (2005), “An investigation of the total quality management survey based research published between 1989 and 2000: a literature review”, International Journal of Quality and Reliability Management, Vol. 19 No. 7, pp. 902-970.

Sit, W., Ooi, K.B, Lin, B. and Chong, A.Y.L. (2009), “TQM and customer satisfaction in Malaysia’s service industry”, Industrial Management & Data Systems, Vol. 109 No. 7, pp. 957-975.

Swartwood, D. (2001), “How to SCOR with Six Sigma”, (Supply Chain Council).

Talib, F., Rahman, Z. and Qureshi, M.N. (2011), “An interpretive structural modeling approach for modeling the practices of total quality management in service sector”, International Journal of Modeling in Operation Management, Vol. 1 No. 3, pp. 223-250.

Tanco M, Mateo R, Santos J, Jaca C and Viles E. (2012), “On the relationship between continuous improvement programs and their effect on quality defects: An automotive case study”, Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, Vol. 23 No. 3-4, pp. 277-290.

Tracey, J.B., T.R. Hinkin, S. Tannenbaum, and J.E. Mathieu. 2001. The influence of individual characteristics and the work environment on varying levels of training outcomes, Human Resource Development Quarterly 12(1) 5-23.

Tews, M. J. and Tracey, J. B. (2008) An empirical examination of post training on-the-job supplements for enhancing the effectiveness of interpersonal skills training, Personnel Psychology, Volume 61, Issue 2, pages 375–401.

Vanichchinchai, A. (2012) "The relationship between employee involvement, partnership management and supply perfor-mance: Findings from a developing country", International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, Vol. 61 Iss: 2, pp.157 - 172

Wang Ge, Huang Samuel H. and Dismukes John P. (2004), “Product –driven supply chainselection using integrated multi-criteria decision-making methodology”, International Journal of Production Economics, Vol. 91, pp. 1-15.

Wei, LI and Yi-zhong, MA (2013), “A framework for using six-sigma metrics to evaluate the performance of supply chain”, International Conference on Management Science & Engineering (20th) July 17-19.

Wu Mei-Ying and Weng, Yung-Chien, A study of supplier selection factors for high-tech industries in the supply chain. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence, 2010, 21(4), 391-413.

Yusuf, Y., Gunasekaran, A. and Dan, G. (2007), “Implementation of TQM in China and organizational performance: an empirical investigation”, Total Quality Management, Vol. 18 No. 5, pp. 509-530.

Xu, L. and Beamon, B. (2006), “Supply chain coordination and cooperation mechanisms: An attribute based approach”, The Journal of Supply Chain Management, Vol. 42 No. 1, pp. 4-12.

Abstract Views

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM


Cited-By (articles included in Crossref)

This journal is a Crossref Cited-by Linking member. This list shows the references that citing the article automatically, if there are. For more information about the system please visit Crossref site

Journal of Business Economics and Management  vol: 18  issue: 2  first page: 288  year: 2017  
doi: 10.3846/16111699.2017.1279683

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives- 4.0 International License 

Universitat Politècnica de València

e-ISSN: 2340-4876     ISSN: 2340-5317