In global apparel businesses, merchandising refers to communication and coordination between cross-country organizations that collaboratively proceed three major activity processes of product development, sourcing and distribution. In this context, integration of resource and processes of people and organizations that are knowledgeable and responsible for the whole cycle of product life is prevalently recognized as one of the principles and practices to sustain essential competitive advantage. However, to integrate such processes inevitably involves a large number of functional teams that collaboratively diagnose, analyze and respond to dynamic customer requirements. In this paper, the authors illustrate the empirical integration issues in the case studies of leading international apparel buying companies and discuss the types of practicing integration mechanism for collaborative merchandising processes. Through the research result analyses in the cases studied, a strategic framework of choice of integration mechanism is then suggested. Finally, we conclude with a discussion of the validity of the merchandising process integration framework in todays fast-paced global competitive environment.
Globalization, Merchandising Processes, Integration Mechanisms
By: Chester K.M. To* Institute of Textiles and Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Ray
Submit Date: 6/7/2010 18:00