Order Winners and Order Qualifiers

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ORDER WINNERS AND ORDER QUALIFIERS

The operations and supply chain strategy is a functional strategy that indicates how structural and infrastructural elements within the operations and supply chain areas will be acquired and developed to support the overall business strategy. Executing successful operations and supply chain strategies means choosing and implementing the right mix of structural and infrastructural elements. What constitutes the best mix of these structural and infrastructural elements is a sub¬ject of ongoing debate among business and academic experts alike. Nevertheless, we can identify three primary objectives of an operations and supply chain strategy:

To help management choose the right mix of structural and infrastructural elements, based on a dear understanding of the performance dimensions valued by customers and the trade-offs involved; •To ensure that the firm’s structural and infrastructural choices are strategically aligned with the firm’s business strategy; and •To support the development of core competencies in the firm’s operations and supply chains.

Operations and supply chains help firms provide products or ser¬vices that someone values. But how should we define value? To begin, most customers eval¬uate products and services based on multiple performance dimensions such as perfor¬mance quality, delivery speed, after-sales support, and cost. The organization that provides the best mix of these dimensions will be seen as providing the highest value. Some managers use the concepts of order winners and order qualifiers to highlight the rel¬ative importance of different performance dimensions. Order winners are performance dimensions that differentiate company’s products and services from those of its competi¬tors. Firms win the customer’s business by providing superior levels of performance on order winners. Order qualifiers are performance dimension on which customers expect a minimum level of performance. Superior...
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