|Susan Sabah Abdulameer||School of Technology Management and Logistics, College of Business, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Kedah 06010, Malaysia|
|Noorulsadiqin Azbiya Yaacob||School of Technology Management and Logistics, College of Business, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Kedah 06010, Malaysia|
|Yousif Munadhil Ibrahim||School of Technology Management and Logistics, College of Business, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Kedah 06010, Malaysia|
The aim of the current paper is to provide a valid and reliable instrument to ensure accurate results. Studies published on the supply chain and leagile supply chain (LASC) and information sharing (IS) as well as their impacts on supply chain performance (SCP) were reviewed, the measurements of the dimensions were adapted and developed, and the validity and reliability for the measures of the LASC, IS, and SCP dimensions were assessed. This assessment was done in two tests: the pre-test to establish the validity of the measures by experts and the pilot test to check the reliability of the measurements using SPSS.V.25. In the pre-test, the comments made by seven academician experts and four practitioners were used to rephrase items and to modify them according to the requirements of the manufacturing industries and in accordance with the Iraq context. Moreover, in the pilot test, some important factors were identified: on average, respondents took about 15 to 20 minutes to complete the questionnaire, and all the items were reliable and were sufficiently correlated with their constructs. The paper focuses on providing valid and reliable measurements for LASC, IS, and SCP as well as the developed measurements used for the decoupling point and testing them.
Decoupling point; Information sharing; Leagile supply chain; Pre-test, Pilot test; Supply chain performance
Currently, competition occurs more often for supply chains than individual companies. In other words, the highest competition is between supply chains (Koh et al., 2006) because supply chain management focuses on the flows of materials, information, and cash from suppliers to customers, or vice-versa (Wibowo and Sholeh, 2015). In fact, companies are facing a series of challenges and issues, most notably the need to balance SCP elements, which involves cost reduction and quick responsiveness while ensuring high quality and a short lead time in a volatile market environment with unexpected demands. Moreover, to counteract uncertainty, companies in the manufacturing industry in Iraq require a suitable supply chain strategy (SCS) to manipulate and to exploit opportunities. In addition, the flow of materials, information, and cash requires a good information system capable to share information among supply chain partners, including suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, and customers, to reduce uncertainty and to improve SCP (Dachyar et al., 2015). Thus, manufacturing companies must develop a strategy that suits their products, markets, and target customers (Mason-Jones et al., 2000; Nurcahyo and Kristihatmoko, 2010; Hallavo, 2015).
The manufacturing industry supply chain is an important issue for all countries. The UN Bulletin of Industrial Statistics for Arab Countries ESCWA's (2016) report pointed out that manufacturing industries play an important role in gross domestic product (GDP); however, in Iraq, there is a reversed trend due to the dependence on mining and quarrying. The contribution of the manufacturing industries in oil-producing countries has fallen to less than five percent, such as in Iraq, due to the heavy reliance on oil production and weak supply chain management (Al-Mehannah, 2019); however, AIDMO's (2017) report stated that manufacturing industries positively contributed to the growth rate of the real GDP per country, except for Iraq, which was negative at -2.4% due to the decline in the share of manufacturing industries in the GDP amounting to 3.8%, indicating the weakness of the manufacturing industry in Iraq. The role of the manufacturing industry is crucial and strategic as one of the main drivers of GDP (Putri et al., 2016).
Simultaneously, the manufacturing industry supply chain in Iraq is still suffering from many problems, which have increased in the last few years, such as a rise in costs due to wasted resources and energy, contributing to a rise in product prices (Al-Mehannah, 2019; Salim et al., 2019). In addition, there are mismatching products with specifications that have been determined in previous (Aljalely and Alsammak, 2019). In addition, the manufacturing industry in Iraq faces another problem, which is the length of lead time from order to delivery. There is also a weakness in the ability to respond to customers’ demands and desires. These issues cause a weak SCP.
Naylor et al. (1999) identified three supply chain strategies (SCSs) that are lean, agile, and leagile. Indeed, a lean strategy and an agile strategy are common strategies in supply chains. From a more comprehensive perspective, the aim of the Leagile Supply Chain (LASC) is to combine the advantages of lean and agile strategies by improving, cost, quality, lead time, and responsiveness (Nakandala and Lau, 2019). In addition, a focus of the LASC is to satisfy customers and to achieve competitive advantages distinguishing some manufacturers from others. Hence, a successful LASC improves the SCP.
Moreover, the LASC dimensions require the lean supply chain (LSC), the agile supply chain (ASC), the decoupling point (DP), and postponement (POS) to function properly and harmoniously, and there should be information sharing with a suitable quality and relevant level among the supply chain partners as this plays an essential role in improving the SCP, including supply chain cost (SCC), supply chain quality (SCQ), supply chain lead time (SCLT), and supply chain responsiveness (SCR).
The importance and novelty of this study is that the four variables of the LASC have not been analyzed together in a previous study. The measurements of the present study’s variables and dimensions were adapted from previous studies with the exception of the measurements of the DP dimension, which were developed specifically for this study. According to Creswell and Creswell (2018), in quantitative studies, when there is any adaptation or development of one or more measurements, the prior validity and reliability may not apply to the new measurements. Therefore, the validity and the reliability of the measurements of LASC, IS, and SCP among the manufacturing industry companies in Iraq are evaluated.
Given that the supply chain and its performance are of interest to researchers and practitioners, the present research will be of great importance to the literature and industries. It will provide valid and reliable measurements for academicians. The present research will also provide many practical managerial implications to solve the SCP problems faced by the manufacturing industry.
A valid and reliable instrument necessary to ensure accurate results when measuring LASC, IS, and SCP has been developed. Two tests were carried out for the present study: the pre-test to establish the validity of the measurements and the pilot test to check the reliability of the measurements. In the pre-test, the comments made by academician experts and practitioners were used to rephrase items and to modify them according to the requirements of the manufacturing industries and in accordance with the Iraqi environment. Moreover, in the pilot test, some important factors were identified: on average, respondents required about 15 to 20 minutes to complete the questionnaire, and all the items were reliable and were sufficiently correlated with their constructs. Therefore, valid and reliable measurements have been developed that can provide a better perception for researchers, policymakers, and top management, particularly in the manufacturing industry, regarding how to measure LASC, IS, and SCP. The future agenda of the authors is to conduct an empirical study using these variables in the manufacturing industry to investigate the relationships among them.
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