The Third-party Logistics (3PL) industry is facing both important growth rates and increasing competitive pressure. 3PL providers are required to continuously sustain a more and more competitive cost structure (i.e. efficiency) and develop capabilities to improve their services (i.e. innovation); hence, the evaluation of these key success factors is considered a key issue. This paper develops a quantitative analysis of 71 Italian 3PL providers by using Data Envelopment Analysis to jointly assess efficiency and innovation. Furthermore, through a case study research, it corroborates the quantitative results by investigating the strategies of best-in-class companies. Results allowed identifying 13 3PL providers as efficiency leaders and 6 as leaders from both the efficiency and the innovation side. Their input composition indicates a diversification of the business models. A breakdown of the analysis by size and industry focus, along with empirical evidence on the strategies enhancing efficiency and innovation, is also provided.

Assessing efficiency and innovation in the 3PL industry: an empirical analysis

MARCHET, GINO;MELACINI, MARCO;SASSI, CHIARA;TAPPIA, ELENA
2017

Abstract

The Third-party Logistics (3PL) industry is facing both important growth rates and increasing competitive pressure. 3PL providers are required to continuously sustain a more and more competitive cost structure (i.e. efficiency) and develop capabilities to improve their services (i.e. innovation); hence, the evaluation of these key success factors is considered a key issue. This paper develops a quantitative analysis of 71 Italian 3PL providers by using Data Envelopment Analysis to jointly assess efficiency and innovation. Furthermore, through a case study research, it corroborates the quantitative results by investigating the strategies of best-in-class companies. Results allowed identifying 13 3PL providers as efficiency leaders and 6 as leaders from both the efficiency and the innovation side. Their input composition indicates a diversification of the business models. A breakdown of the analysis by size and industry focus, along with empirical evidence on the strategies enhancing efficiency and innovation, is also provided.
3PL industry; data envelopment analysis; Malmquist Index; case study; innovation; efficiency
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1031255
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