IT-ENABLED PROCESS DEVELOPMENT . A CASE STUDY OF THE PURCHASING CHALLENGES OF A PETROLEUM LOGISTICS FIRM
AbstractSupply chain management (SCM) has become a strategic and competitive ‘‘tool’’ that is increasingly recognized while purchasing has now assumed an equally important strategic role in business organizations. Purchasing has evolved from a mere buying function into a strategic function. It is a critical driving force in the strategic management of supply chains. This study looks at the purchasing function through a narrative produced by a case-study of a company involved in offshore petroleum logistics services. This includes detailed event descriptions of purchasing processes and three unique quality-related episodes from this studied offshore drilling service firm including modelling information exchange, as well as information system (IS) use. The frame of reference developed is the resource-based view of the firm and from a SCM perspective, purchasing and information use in this business function. Through this single case study, uncertainty is evoked as a prime challenge of the purchasing function. Inspired by the resource-based view as well as SCM it is suggested that a focus in terms of information system development be placed on the purchaser and how this business actor is supported by information. This process of purchasing development is envisioned as incremental and continuous, involving occasional steps of radical innovation and must be embedded in a strategically enabled context.