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Quick Scan in Australiasia

Guest Lecture to Service Operations Research Theme (SORT), Cardiff Business School
QSAM in Australiasia
QSAM: Quick Scan Audit Methodology 

by Dr Eric Deakins from University of Waikato, New Zealand

19 October 2011

Industry fieldwork with NZ value stream


  • Understand barriers to seamless flow within the NZ context
  • Identify SC issues

Labour productivity in NZ was quite low during 2005-2008

  • Relatively low productive comparing to OECD countries, work more than the output
  • Around 10%GDP of business investment , lower than OECD average

Full QSAM sample

  • NZ commodity
  • Large daily factory
  • Large (global-brand( pulp and paper producer
  • Med. 3PL

NZ non-commodity

  • Med. kitchen manufacturer
  • Large (global brand) food producer etc.


  • International integration comparison: baseline, functional integration, internal integration and external integration
  • an issue is to get the client interested in improving their integration level

Case study

  • Bad case:
    Cause-Effect -> no strategic plan and direction, reply solely on cost as a single KPI, reliance on tacit knowledge resulting in decline profitability
  • Identify barriers to SC integration using three layer framework, from outside to inside = environment, company and value steam from (Bohme et al., 2009) and four type classification from Cardiff BPR, culture, technology, finance and organisation
  • define the scale of each classification (Cardiff BPR) by low, med and high
  • Output (PhD thesis) supply chain improvement path way -> change programe (attempt to improve)

Pathway of least resistance: 

  • Starting from people and then integrate internally and externally simultaneously
  • Key moderator for internal process – top management support
  • Key moderator for external relationship integration are positive power and dependency structure
  • Applying technology in the end of both internal and external integration


1. People

  • “Once we were warriors”
    – Deep down they still are
    – Male dominance
  • Win-Win is for wimps
    – Competitive mind. just interact in the business and move on
  • “Once were pioneers”
  • “This is NZ so [obviously] our needs are unique”
  • Industry and academia are like oil and water
    – Most mid and top level managers don’t have a degree, just learned from their jobs
    – Then, they are not interested in the business
    – “I learned all that I wil ever need on the job”
    – “We made 2.4 billion last year”

2. The Place

  • NZ is unpopulated – “Everyone knows everyone”
  • NZ living is relatively uncomplicated
  • NZ is a very risk-averse society
  • NZ is broke (es.. Since Christchurch earthquakes)
  • NZ has poor logistics and transport infrastructure and all modes aggressively compete with each other
    – No productivity strategy, “let the market decide”
  • Government is populist and prone to knee-jerk reaction
    – 3-year term; MMP system

3. A longstanding focus on effieciency

  • “This plant is running at 110%”
  • “We couldn’t stop the paper mill even if we wanted to; after 52 years of operation no-one would know how to restart it”
  • “Every fire station, warehouse and unused cool store for 50 miles around is full of our product”
  • “When we restart the furnance the lights dim in the local supermarket and the EFTPOS machines  go down.

4. The Perspective

  • NZ is very remote from its markets
    – Parochial, cliquey, ‘Us and them’
  • very small or far away?
  • the long view – ‘3D narrow’ versus ‘2D wide’

Research avenues

How to increase QSAM impact/effectiveness/reputation?
Post-QSAM Impact (0-10)
Dairy company = 8
Pulp/paper mill = 5
3PL = 1
Kitchen manufacturer = 3
Food producer = 3
Machinery manufacturer = 7
Hospital = 1
Foundry = 0
Average = 3.5 

Improvement alternative
1. Aspirin – Quick Hit – short term not sustainable
2. Sustainable way – operational efficiency


  • Impact of organisation culture on supply chain behaviour and on resistance to change and performance
  • Monitoring the progress of value stream change from a system perspective – trajectories and scorecards
  • Further development and aplication of QSAM to health and otherservice orientated value streams
  • Soft system considerations
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