Manufacturing practices, strategic fit and performanc: A routine-based view

Mikko Ketokivi, Roger Schroeder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

183 Scopus citations


This article challenges and advances the extant manufacturing practice-performance research in three ways. First and most fundamentally, the article offers a sound theoretical foundation for the proposition that manufacturing practices have competitive value. Second, typical studies do not pay enough attention to the multidimensional nature of performance and often collapse strategic position (performance) into a one-dimensional index. The article will show that this does not do justice to the multidimensional nature of operational performance. Third, extant research, aside from a few exceptions, pays little attention to the strategic contingencies involved in adopting and implementing specific practices. The overarching goal of this article is to move us toward better-informed empirical inquiry of the strategic contingency argument in operations strategy research. The article builds a theoretical argument of manufacturing practices, strategic contingency and performance and tests it in a sample of 164 manufacturing plants using a series of regression analyses. Results show that both the best practice and strategic contingency arguments have merit in explaining operational performance; however, the contingency argument has stronger support.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-191
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Operations and Production Management
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2004


  • Operational research
  • Statistical inference
  • Strategic manufacturing

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