Lead Time Management in Garment Sector

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European Journal of Scientific Research ISSN 1450-216X Vol.33 No.4 (2009), pp.617-629 © EuroJournals Publishing, Inc. 2009 http://www.eurojournals.com/ejsr.htm

Lead Time Management in the Garment Sector of Bangladesh: An Avenues for Survival and Growth Nuruzzaman Department of Marketing, University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh Ahasanul Haque Department of business Administration, International Islamic University Malaysia, Box No. 10, 50728 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Abstract Bangladesh has emerged as an important supplier of quality readymade garments in the global market. The spectacular growth of garment sector in Bangladesh in recent years has dramatically changed the landscape of export composition of the country. Once heavily dependent on exports of primary products lead by Jute, the economy of Bangladesh is now experiencing almost 76% export contribution from readymade garments (RMG). The sector has now occupied an important place in Bangladesh national economy. Nevertheless, all is not well in this sector. It faces numerous challenges and it is now on the crossroad with the phasing out of quota system, GSP facilities and new provisions of WTO. In this study attempts have been made to find out the ways to face the competitive business environment by the efficient management process towards the lead time reduction. The main purpose of this article is to analyse the business process of the garment sector to find out it’s lead time minimization process. The study has been concluded by the development of a new diagram of business process with the outcome that the other management process in the supply chain is an important factor rather than process management in the lead time minimization process.

Keywords: RMG, Lead Time Minimisation, Management process, Supply Chain.

Introduction
The spectacular growth of garment sector in Bangladesh in recent years has dramatically changed the landscape of export composition of the country. Once heavily dependent on exports of primary products led by Jute, the economy of Bangladesh is now experiencing almost 76% (Nuruzzaman, 2005)export contribution from Readymade garments (RMG). The sector has now occupied an important place in our national economy. With the blessings of cheap labour, pressure for globalisation of production based on location economies as well as the favourable treatment from developed countries, Bangladesh and some other developing countries have gradually become the global players in international trade in RMG. However, the Multi-fibre Arrangement facility, which was extended to favour the least, developed countries in exporting garments and textile has phased out after 2005. Consequently, the beneficiaries of MFA, including Bangladesh are facing severe competition in the unprotected world market. At present, this sector is facing numerous challenges nationally and globally.

Lead Time Management in the Garment Sector of Bangladesh: An Avenues for Survival and Growth

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Bangladesh is one of the leading readymade garments exporters in the global market. The changing global environment in business and the development of GATT into WTO raises many important questions regarding increase in export in the Textile and garment sector for a developing country like Bangladesh. To survive in this sector Bangladesh must take immediate pragmatic policies enabling itself to compete more efficiently in the changing business environment through minimisation of lead time. In the beginning of 1990s, the lead time was 120-150 days (Azad, 2004) but in 2007, it was reduced to 30-50 days, i.e. at present it is 90-100 days (Khan, 2007). China requires only 30 days due to their textile and other backward linkage facilities as well as export friendly management and supporting policy. It is 45-60 days in India and Pakistan (Nuruzzaman, 2008). Therefore it appears that in the present situation Bangladesh RMG industry will not be able to compete successfully in the international...
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