Improving supply chain collaboration through operational excellence approaches: an IoT perspective

Li Cui, Meihua Gao, Jing Dai, Jian Mou

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Collaboration is an important emerging dimension of sustainable supply chain management. How to improve supply chain collaboration (SCC) by means of operational excellence approaches has become an important research topic. The Internet of things (IoT), an important means of operational excellence, has also received increased attention. For better collaboration by the IoT, this study proposes a novel methodology to evaluate the measures of IoT adoption in SCC. Design/methodology/approach: Based on the six-domain model and the common classification of collaboration, the measures of the IoT and the criteria of SCC are developed, respectively. A hybrid multi-step methodology that combines neutrosophic set theory, analytic hierarchy process (AHP) and technology for order preference by similarity to an ideal solution (TOPSIS) is proposed to complete the evaluation. Findings: The results show that improving information transparency, strengthening the integration of management information systems and improving large data processing abilities are the most important measures of the IoT in improving SCC. Measures such as introducing sensing technology and laser scanning technology rank at the bottom and are relatively unimportant. Practical implications: The research results provide insights and references for firms to improve SCC by adopting appropriate IoT measures. Originality/value: Most of existing studies indicate the significance of technology in SCC. But this study shows a different conclusion that technologies rank the bottom, while information transparency is more important. And a suitable explanation is given. It further enriches the theoretical studies in SCC field.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-591
Number of pages27
JournalIndustrial Management and Data Systems
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 16 Jun 2020


  • AHP
  • Internet of things
  • Neutrosophic set
  • Operational excellence
  • Supply chain collaboration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management Information Systems
  • Industrial relations
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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