Purpose: Greater participation in international trade is an essential element of economic growth. Trade and transport facilitation (TTF) measures and instruments are seen as important initiatives to smooth the progress of trade volumes. The measurement of TTF performance provides the basis for the development of initiatives aimed at accelerating the flow of goods across borders as well as optimising customs processes. A major problem is that the lack of consensus on the definition and characterization of performance factors for TTF makes it difficult for policymakers and private sector stakeholders to adequately assess the constraints they face in connecting to global markets (Raven 2001). This study focuses upon operational aspects of TTF. Its main purpose is to identify factors that represent key operations performance aspects of TTF systems. Research approach: The research approach used to identify key TTF performance factors was Delphi study. This method is considered to obtain reliable consensus on complex issues from a group of experts. It is an exercise of group communication interspersed with controlled opinion feedback involving a panel of geographically dispersed experts. In order to avoid influences, the group interaction in Delphi is anonymous. A knowledgeable group of academics, consultants, and practitioners with large experience in the area of global logistics and supply chain management formed the group of experts in this study. Findings and Originality: This paper reports the findings of a Delphi study involved in a research project funded by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) UK. Critical operations performance elements such as speed, dependability, flexibility, quality, and cost provided the basis for the categorization of the key TTF performance factors identified in the study. Those performance elements are well established performance aspects in the operations management discipline. This classification framework provides clarification, sound referential basis, and a more structured and consistent way to represent key performance factors on TTF operations. Research impact: The categorization of TTF operations performance factors in terms of speed, dependability, flexibility, quality, and cost provides a useful framework for the development of comparative studies involving regional and global analyses. The study also addresses issues regarding the ownership of TTF operations and the holistic perspective of TTF systems, which normally comprise a group of private and public organisations providing border and customs services involved in international trade. The considerations made around these issues might be particularly insightful for studies concerned with TTF. Practical impact: Proper identification of critical operations performance elements is of crucial importance for the implementation of productive systems. The fundamental performance objectives that apply to all types of organisations, and are closely related to customer satisfaction requirements, are speed, dependability, flexibility, quality, and cost. Using these elements as a basis for the categorization of key performance factors of TTF systems facilitates benchmarking and provides clearer reference for assessment processes. This classification framework can also be used to monitor projects and support structured comparisons of the operations performance of TTF systems in different crossing-borders or countries.
|Publication status||Published - 2009|
|Event||Logistics Research Network Conference (LRN 2009) - Cardiff, United Kingdom|
Duration: 9 Sep 2009 → 11 Sep 2009
|Conference||Logistics Research Network Conference (LRN 2009)|
|Period||9/09/09 → 11/09/09|