Re-evaluating supply chain integration and firm performance: linking operations strategy to supply chain strategy

Frank Wiengarten, Huashan Li, Prakash J. Singh, Brian Fynes

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This paper aims to explore the performance implications of supply chain integration (SCI) taking a strategic perspective. Thus, this paper is set to provide answers to the following research questions: Does a higher degree of SCI always lead to greater firm performance improvements? As the answer to this question is likely to be no, the authors explore the performance implications from a strategic perspective: Is the SCI–performance relationship contingent on a company’s competitive priorities (i.e. operations strategy)? Design/methodology/approach: The authors explore their questions through multiple quasi-independent data sets to test the impact of SCI on firm performance. Furthermore, the authors provide a more nuanced conceptual and empirical view to explore the previously uncovered contradictory results and contingent relationship challenging the “more integration equals higher firm performance” proposition. Findings: The results only provide partial support for the proposition that more integration is always beneficial in the supply chain context. The authors also identified that the impact of SCI on financial performance is contingent on a company’s competitive priorities. Originality/value: This study provides a much-needed comprehensive assessment of the SCI–performance relationship through critically re-evaluating one of the most popular propositions in the field of supply chain management. The results can be extrapolated beyond the dyad, as the authors conceptualise integration simultaneously from an upstream and downstream perspective.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)540-559
Number of pages20
JournalSupply Chain Management: An International Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Performance
  • Supply chain management
  • Surveys


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