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Early Supplier Involvement (ESI)

Many leading companies are forming 'supply networks' in order to lock in the benefits of early supplier involvement (Economist Intelligence Unit, 2005)

Information about Early Supplier Involvement (ESI)

Involving suppliers in cross-functional teams at the early stages of product development has strong roots in the Japanese automotive industry (Johnsen, 2009). Today ESI remains quite common in automotive and consumer electronics industries (Leenders et al., 2002). Many purchasing organisations view coordination with critical suppliers via ESI as important enablers to product, process and supply chain structure development and as a cost reduction exercise (Millson and Wilemon 2002). In addition, adopting ESI practices may offer additional benefits to organisations, including the management of supply risk in new product development and the upstream supply chain (Zsidisin and Smith, 2005). For a supplier, participation may be embedded in the already existing partnership or alliance with the manufacturer, or a way of securing the business (Leenders et al., 2002).

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