Dr. Sara El-Gazzar
Supply chain management in the service sector: an applied framework
The importance of the services’ business sector increased dramatically as a main driving force of GDP particularly in developed countries which highlights the potential impact of an effectively managed service supply chain (SSC). There is a significant lack of understanding of the concept of SSC and the implementation of its practices in addition to the lack of studies that focused on how to model, manage and assess the performance of SSC. This paper aims at developing an adequate framework to manage and asses the performance of SSC. A critical review was conducted to define and map the key supply chain processes in the service sector, then a corresponding set of appropriate performance measures was identified and quantified to analyse and assess SSC performance. To demonstrate the applicability of the developed framework, sampling of multiple cases from logistics industry in Egypt was conducted. It has been found -unlike the manufacturing sector- services cannot be standardized as they vary and lack common features. In addition, the review indicated that the analysis of services quality is unlikely to be quantifiable which makes the assessment of SSC performance rather difficult. The implementation of the developed framework can be a quantifiable practical tool for managing SSC performance. The proposed framework would help service-based companies in managing the effectiveness and the efficiency of SSC and to trace areas that need improvement through evaluating, monitoring and controlling SSC processes’ performance.