The effect of supplier manufacturing capabilities on buyer responsiveness: The role of collaboration

Brian Squire, Paul D. Cousins, Benn Lawson, Steve Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationships between supplier capabilities, supply chain collaboration and buyer responsiveness. Design/methodology/approach - The sample is drawn from UK manufacturing firms across eight industry sectors. Data are analysed using a three-step hierarchical regression model to investigate main, interaction and quadratic effects. Findings - The results indicate that suppliers' capabilities (flexibility, responsiveness and modularity) directly impact buyer responsiveness but that the level of buyer-supplier collaboration moderates this relationship. Furthermore, the results show a curvilinear relationship directly between collaboration and buyer responsiveness, whereby there is an optimal point beyond which returns on the relationship decline. Research limitations/implications - The method adopted is a cross-sectional design and therefore cannot imply causality. Nonetheless, the findings suggest a number of implications. The paper identifies empirical evidence for the extended resource-based view (ERBV) of the firm and therefore has implications for the unit of analysis of future studies investigating competitive advantage. Contrary to popular wisdom, the findings also suggest a curvilinear relationship between supply chain collaboration and performance. Originality/value - The paper provides novel insights into the impact of supplier capabilities on buyer responsiveness. Furthermore, the paper provides empirical evidence for the rationale of the ERBV within the context of operations management. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)766-788
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal of Operations and Production Management
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Channel relationships
  • Resource management
  • Supply chain management
  • United Kingdom


Dive into the research topics of 'The effect of supplier manufacturing capabilities on buyer responsiveness: The role of collaboration'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this