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van Hoek, Remko I., "Reconfiguring the supply chain to implement postponed manufacturing", International Journal of Logistics Management, Vol. 9, No. 1, 1998, pp. 95-110.



It is expected that, as the next step in the development of distribution channels, companies will decentralize their final manufacturing into their distribution centers. It has also been suggested that companies are increasingly beginning to customize products based on customer orders. Both the repositioning of final manufacturing into the distribution channel and the move towards customization-on-order are related to the implementation of postponed manufacturing. A framework for the analyses of supply chain reconfiguration patterns in the context of internationalization strategy is introduced and used in eight case studies. Results suggest that the implementation of postponed manufacturing require not only the reconfiguration of the logistics systems, but also that of other operations in the supply chain, thus creating a cross-functional effect. Different paths are found which are viable for structuring the reconfiguration process, and different postponement applications have also been found.