The research register for this journal is available at The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available at http://www.mcbup.com/research_registers http://www.emerald-library.com/ftIJPDLM31,1 The challenge of reverse logistics in catalog retailing Chad W. Autry, Patricia J. Daugherty and R. Glenn Richey26 Division of Marketing, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, USAReceived April 2000Revised June 2000, Keywords Reverse logistics, Catalogue retailing, Customer service, Channel managementSeptember 2000 Abstract Many firms are placing greater emphasis on managing returned product. Reverse logistics programs are being used to recover assets that would otherwise be lost. Research results are presented covering reverse logistics programs in the electronics industry, specifically among firms selling through catalogs. The paper looks at how reverse logistics performance and satisfaction with reverse logistics service are influenced by industry, firm size/sales volume, and internal or external assignment of responsibility for disposition. The results are mixed. Performance is significantly impacted by sales volume, while industry effects significantly impact satisfaction. Neither performance nor satisfaction was significantly influenced by location of responsibility for disposition. All sales are not final. Firms are finding that they must cope with an escalating volume of returned/unsold/damaged product. The tremendous growth in returns has stimulated new interest in reverse logistics as firms attempt to meet the challenge. As Witt (1995) notes, ``Its one thing to say youll take the merchandise back; something else when youre the person in the distribution center who has to figure out how to get it back and what to do with it when it arrives (p. 22). Two recent books, Development and Implementation of Reverse Logistics Programs by Stock (1998) and Going Backwards: Reverse Logistics Trends and Practices co-authored by Rogers and Tibben-Lembke (1999), provide comprehensive coverage of reverse logistics practices. The current research was undertaken to gain greater insights by examining one industry, i.e. electronics retail firms selling through catalogs. The electronics industry can be further broken down into several segments ± computer/office equipment, household appliances, household audio/video, and communications equipment. The intent was to allow assessment of current practices and to identify variations in performance based on firm characteristics or operations. Following a brief review of relevant literature, results of the research are provided detailing a profile of reverse logistics program performance and satisfaction among the electronics retailing firms. Reverse logistics Reverse logistics has important environmental dimensions, i.e. green logistics (Byrne and Deeb, 1993; Carter and Ellram, 1998; Wu and Dunn, 1995), as well as dimensions relating to value reclamation. The latter is of the most interest in the current research. The research focuses on companies efforts to reclaim value through the returns process. This may be prompted by a wide range ofInternational Journal of PhysicalDistribution & Logistics reasons including the reclamation of unsold, damaged, or mis-shipped product.Management, Vol. 31 No. 1, 2001,pp. 26-37. # MCB University Effective reverse logistics is believed to result in direct benefits, includingPress, 0960-0035 improved customer satisfaction, decreased resource investment levels, and
reductions in storage and distribution costs (Guintini and Andel, 1995a; Andel, The challenge of1997). Reverse logistics can significantly impact a companys bottom line by reverse logisticsrecapturing value (Andel, 1997; Clendenin, 1997; South, 1998). In fact, if a firmdoes reverse logistics well, it will make money (Stock 1998). Recovery ofproducts for remanufacturing, repair, reconfiguration, and recycling can createprofitable business opportunities (Giuntini and Andel, 1995b). Companies thatare able to take advantage of economies of scale may do especially well. 27Reverse logistics also influences customer service/satisfaction. For example,the ability to quickly and efficiently handle the return of product for necessaryrepair can be critical (Blumberg, 1999). In spite of the fact that reverse logistics can so dramatically influence firmfinances and customer relations, too often it is overlooked and the strategic valueignored. Rogers and Tibben-Lembke (1999) found that four in ten logisticsmanagers consider reverse logistics unimportant compared to other companyissues. It is estimated that some industries have return rates in the range of 30per cent to 50 per cent (Meyer, 1999); other estimates are as high as 60 per cent(Jedd, 1999). Considering this, the perspective that reverse logistics isunimportant is dangerous and likely to negatively impact firm performance. Reverse logistics is not optional and it is not unimportant. Liberal returnpolicies are standard marketing practice at many firms. Customers are oftenallowed to return products for any reason, no questions asked. This, coupledwith the need to accommodate damaged or defective merchandise, productrecalls, maintenance and repairs, and recycling, means logistics professionalsmust place a higher priority on effectively managing returns. According toMinahan (1998), efficient management of returns can reduce companies annuallogistics costs by as much as 10 per cent. About 20 per cent of potential costsavings from improved reverse logistics typically come from labor savings; theother 80 per cent relates to savings in freight costs and reductions in pipelineinventory (McKeefry, 1997).Research questionsThree research questions were addressed.Q1 ± Are there differences in reverse logistics program performance orsatisfaction by industry?In spite of the fact that the importance of developing reverse logisticscapabilities is widely talked about, little empirical research is availabledetailing historical accounts or profiling program performance. Reverselogistics is highly industry-specific. Industry segments react differently withrespect to the strategic allocation of resources and reverse logistics programdevelopment due to the special challenges and differences in operatingcharacteristics across or between industry segments (Marien, 1998). Reverselogistics is often ``tailored to fit industry/customer requirements (Blumberg,1999). Such differences in reverse logistics programs can be explained by thetenets of contingency theory. Contingency theory states that different
IJPDLM environments place differing requirements on organizations (Lawrence and31,1 Lorsch, 1967). This was tested in the current research by examining whether differences could be identified based on industry affiliation of the respondents and whether different programs are likely to provide differential value to customers. Langley and Holcomb (1992) have proposed that logistics program value can28 be measured along three dimensions: effectiveness, efficiency, and differentiation. Effectiveness refers to the level of performance provided by the program, efficiency refers to resource commitments or cost controls, and differentiation refers to program uniqueness. Thus, according to Langley and Holcomb (1992), effectiveness is synonymous with performance, and efficiency leads to satisfaction with the programs. The first research question addresses these issues within a reverse logistics context. Q2 ± Are there differences in reverse logistics program performance or satisfaction by firm size, i.e. sales volume? The implementation of internal reverse logistics programs often involves significant allocations of capital and/or resources for the construction of reclamation and redistribution facilities, purchasing of recycling equipment, re-training of employees, etc. In order to justify expenditures on in-house programs, sufficient volumes of reverse logistics activities are required (Stock, 1998). In general, the viability of investment in reverse logistics programs can be linked to the volume of business being handled by the organizational unit. Volume has been presented as a key driver of reverse logistics strategies, and distinctive characteristics have been identified between organizations based on their levels of reverse logistics activity (Johnson and Leenders, 1997). Specifically, as organizations experience higher volumes of returned product, they tend to develop expertise or experience that allows them to operate reverse logistics programs more efficiently and effectively (Johnson, 1998). These issues are examined by the second research question. Q3 ± Are there differences in reverse logistics program performance or satisfaction by internal vs. external assignment of responsibility? Reverse logistics responsibility can be retained within the firm (catalog retailers within the current context) or transferred/assigned to trading partners (manufacturers or their intermediaries). Additionally, reverse logistics is frequently considered a prime candidate for outsourcing, i.e. use of a third- party firm. Handling reverse logistics internally, a do-it-yourself approach, allows the firm to keep control over the process. Internal managers are expected to be familiar with the process, the products, and potential outlets for disposal or sale of products (Johnson, 1998). Of course, the do-it-yourself internal approach requires the commitment of considerable firm resources (time and financial) and assumes internal capabilities and expertise which may or may not be present. Alternatively, in some instances, firms elect to hand off reverse
logistics to the trading partner. In such instances, it is assumed that the trading The challenge ofpartner (i.e. manufacturer in the current context) will be better suited to reverse logisticshandling returns due to prior experience and/or handling of greater volumesthus allowing economies that the retailer could not achieve. However, externalhandling of reverse logistics is not without drawbacks either. When reverselogistics is handled externally, close coordination between the parties isrequired to ensure maximum efficiency (Blumberg, 1999). The third research 29question explores the relationship between internal or external handling ofreverse logistics and program performance/satisfaction.MethodologyBased on a review of the literature and interviews with logistics professionals, asurvey of reverse logistics practices was developed. The survey was pretestedwith other logistics professionals and modified with respect to their input. A commercial mailing list of 212 CEOs at US catalog companies sellingelectronic goods was purchased. Questionnaires were mailed to this group andreminder cards sent after two weeks. A total of 81 surveys were returned, ofwhich ten had excessive missing values, yielding 71 usable surveys (33.5 percent). The respondent base represents a variety of electronics industry segments,including computers, office equipment, household applicances, household audio,household video, and communications equipment. The average annual salesvolume and average number of employees for respondent firms were $32.5million and 160, respectively. An analysis of non-response bias was performed by comparing early andlate responses, per guidelines established by Armstrong and Overton (1977).Responses from the last quartile of respondents (assumed to be most similar tothose of non-respondents) were compared to responses provided by the firstthree quartiles of respondents. Comparisons of means on survey items acrossgroups ( p < 0.05) revealed no significant differences for relevant variables.Thus, non-response bias is not considered to be a problem.Results and discussionThe research results indicate respondents satisfaction levels and performanceof their firms reverse logistics programs. Respondents were provided with alist of reverse logistics-related performance measures and asked to indicatehow effective their firms have been in achieving each of them. The specificitems were developed, based on a review of the literature and refined followinginput from pretesting. A total of six items were included. The items weremeasured on a seven-point Likert-type scale with 1 = not at all effective and 7 =extremely effective. The means and standard deviations for the performanceitems are presented in Table I. As indicated in Table I, reverse logistics programs have been effective inachieving two of the more externally-driven program-related goals. Therespondents reported that their firms have been successful in terms ofenvironmental regulatory compliance (5.69) and in achieving improved customer
IJPDLM relations (5.66) via reverse logistics programs. However, the respondents indicated31,1 less effectiveness in achieving the more internally-focused program goals. They have only been moderately successful at recovery of assets (5.00), cost containment (4.96), improved profitability (4.72), and reduced inventory investment (4.70). Respondents were also questioned about their levels of satisfaction relating to the reverse logistics programs provided by their trading partners. A series of eight30 reverse logistics related service components was provided and respondents were asked to indicate how satisfied they were with their trading partners relative to those areas. The list of satisfaction measures was developed following a literature search and subsequent pretesting with logistics professionals. The items were measured on a seven-point scale with 1 = not at all satisfied and 7 = extremely satisfied. Satisfaction item means and standard deviations are included in Table II. In general, firms are only somewhat satisfied with the reverse logistics service being provided by their trading partners. Respondents indicated moderate levels of satisfaction with their partners in the areas of quality of rework/repair (4.95), compliance with the buying agreement (4.88), levels of returns allowed (4.77), and ease of obtaining return authorization (4.71). Even lower satisfaction was reported for timeliness of rework/repair (4.44), length of time for credit processing (4.39), and reconciliation of chargebacks (4.37). Finally, respondent firms are least satisfied with their trading partners ability to use the Internet to process returns (3.76). Standard Performance measure Mean deviation Environmental regulatory compliance 5.69 1.60 Improved customer relations 5.66 1.34 Recovery of assets (products) 5.00 1.71 Cost containment 4.96 1.48Table I. Improved profitability 4.72 1.59Effectiveness in Reduced inventory investment 4.70 1.79achieving reverselogistics goals Notes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all effective ± 7 = extremely effective Standard Satisfaction measure Mean deviation Quality of rework/repair 4.95 1.36 Vendors overall compliance with buying agreement 4.88 1.41 Level of returns allowed (use of cap programs) 4.77 1.65 Ease of obtaining return authorization 4.71 1.53 Timeliness of rework/repair 4.44 1.51 Length of time for credit processing 4.39 1.54 Handling reconciliation of charge backs 4.37 1.54Table II. Use of Internet in processing returns 3.76 1.99Satisfaction withreverse logistics service Notes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all satisfied ± 7 = extremely satisfied
Industry effects on performance and satisfaction The challenge ofThe literature suggests that reverse logistics performance and satisfaction with reverse logisticsreverse logistics service will vary by industry. The respondents were asked toindicate their primary industry from a listing including the computer/officeequipment industry, the household appliance industry, the household audio/video industry, or the communications equipment industry. If none of thecategories accurately characterized their business, the respondents were asked 31to write in alternate responses. Based on the responses, the sample was divided into two groups. Firms thatare participating in the computer/office equipment industry or thecommunications equipment industry were placed in one group, while firmsspecializing in household audio/video or appliances were placed into another.Write-in responses were evaluated by the authors and placed into theappropriate grouping. Results of t-tests performed to examine differences inmeans by industry group on the reverse logistics performance measures arepresented in Table III. T-tests were also performed to examine differences inmeans for satisfaction with the reverse logistics service. These results arepresented in Table IV. The results suggest no significant industry effect relative to reverse logisticsperformance. None of the six performance measures were found to be significantlydifferent across the two groups. However, the results do indicate that industry hassignificant implications for level of satisfaction with reverse logistics service. Thehousehold goods industries had significantly higher levels of satisfaction ( p < 0.05)on four of the reverse logistics service components. Satisfaction was significantlyhigher for levels of returns allowed, ease of obtaining return authorization, lengthof time for credit processing, and handling reconciliation of chargebacks. Theresults also indicated moderate differences ( p < 0.10) for two other components,quality and timeliness of rework/repair. In only two instances, use of the Internet inprocessing returns and vendor compliance with the buying agreement, were nosignificant differences found between industry groups. Thus, it appears as thoughrespondents in the household goods industries are more satisfied overall with theirreverse logistics service. Though the research did not attempt to discover reasons t-tests for differences in means Computer/office/ communications Household goodsPerformance measure industries industriesEnvironmental regulatory compliance 5.56 5.87Improved customer relations 5.58 5.81Recovery of assests (products) 4.86 5.30Cost containment 4.90 5.08 Table III.Improved profitability 4.68 4.87 Reverse logisticsReduced inventory investment 4.51 5.15 effectiveness by industry: t-test forNotes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all effective ± 7 = extremely effective differences in means
IJPDLM t-tests for differences in means31,1 Computer/office/ communications Household goods Satisfaction measure industries industries Quality of rework/repair 4.71 5.31*** Vendors overall compliance with buying agreement 4.75 5.0932 Level of returns allowed (use of cap programs) 4.36 5.42** Ease of obtaining return authorization 4.34 5.30** Timeliness of rework/repair 4.17 4.88*** Length of time for credit processing 4.00 4.96** Handling reconciliation of charge backs 4.02 4.95**Table IV. Use of Internet in processing returns 3.59 4.16Satisfaction withreverse logistics service Notes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all satisfied ± 7 = extremely satisfiedby industry: t-test for ** = Significantly different at p < 0.05differences in means *** = Significantly different at p < 0.10 for differences in satisfaction by industry, it is possible that the computer, office, and communications industries might be evaluated more strictly with respect to the satisfaction components, i.e. their target customers may hold them to higher standards because they perceive business-related products to be more critical than household goods. Sales volume effects on performance and satisfaction In order to examine associations between sales volume and reverse logistics performance and satisfaction, respondents were asked to estimate their firms sales volume during the most recent fiscal year. The sample was divided into two groups (at the fiftieth percentile) based on sales dollars. Thus, firms that sold in excess of $32 million were designated as high volume firms, and those selling at that volume or below that amount were designated as low volume firms. T-tests were utilized to identify differences in performance and satisfaction with reverse logistics service based on sales volume. The results are presented in Tables V and VI. t-tests for differences in means Performance measure High volume Low volume Environmental regulatory compliance 5.34 6.20*** Improved customer relations 5.26 6.09** Recovery of assets (products) 4.73 5.44*** Cost containment 4.45 5.50** Improved profitability 4.45 5.07Table V. Reduced inventory investment 4.29 5.34**Reverse logisticseffectiveness by sales Notes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all effective ± 7 = extremely effectivevolume: t-tests for ** = Significantly different at p < 0.05differences in means *** = Significantly different at p < 0.10
The results presented in Table V suggest that sales volume plays an important The challenge ofrole in determining firm reverse logistics performance. Highly significant reverse logisticsdifferences ( p < 0.05) between groups were discovered for three of the sixperformance measures, while two others were found to be different at a moremoderate significance level ( p < 0.10). Low volume firms were found to besignificantly more effective at improving customer relations, containing costs,and reducing inventory investment than were high volume firms. Furthermore, 33low volume firms were also moderately more effective at recovery of assets andenvironmental regulatory compliance. For only one performance item,improved profitability, was no significant difference found between the twosales volume groups. These results indicate that smaller volume firms are doing a better job withrespect to reverse logistics effectiveness. This is an interesting finding, as itmight be expected that larger volume firms would enjoy performanceadvantages due to economies of scale. However, although the electronicscatalog retailers are selling large volumes of goods, these volumes are beingachieved via a large number of small transactions. Many small returnshipments would not allow the firms to achieve economies and performancemay actually be impacted negatively. Also, with many small shipments(returns of one item, for example) there are more opportunities for things to gowrong, e.g. slow returns. Thus, smaller volume firms would have feweropportunities for mistakes and/or problems. Although Table V presents a case for sales volume impacting reverselogistics performance, Table VI indicates that sales volume is not significantlyassociated with the firms satisfaction with its manufacturers/vendors relativeto their reverse logistics service. No significant differences were found betweenthe sales volume groups on the service component measures. It seems likelythat firms of both the high and low sales volume groups face many of the sameservice-related problems. Further research will have to be undertaken to betterunderstand how economies of scale and economies of scope affect levels ofsatisfaction associated with reverse logistics service. t-tests for differences in meansSatisfaction measure High volume Low volumeQuality of rework/repair 4.79 5.22Vendors overall compliance with buying agreement 4.73 5.03Level of returns allowed (use of cap programs) 4.76 4.78Ease of obtaining return authorization 4.44 5.00Timeliness of rework/repair 4.60 4.21Length of time for credit processing 4.37 4.40 Table VI.Handling reconciliation of charge backs 4.34 4.42 Satisfaction withUse of Internet in processing returns 4.04 3.44 reverse logistics service by sales volume: t-testsNotes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all satisfied ± 7 = extremely satisfied for differences in means
IJPDLM Sales disposition responsibility effects on performance and satisfaction31,1 To examine the possibility that reverse logistics performance and satisfaction with reverse logistics service might vary according to the internal/external assignment of reverse logistics responsibility, respondents were asked to indicate what happens to products that are returned by their customers. Specifically, the respondents were asked to estimate the percentage of their34 returns handled through given disposition options. Based on the responses, the sample was divided into two groups based on the assignment of responsibility for disposition of returned product. Firms that elect to handle the majority of their disposition activities internally (via donation, destruction, recycling, refurbishment, repackaging and/or reselling) were placed in one group, while firms that forward the majority of their returns to the manufacturer or supplier for handling were placed into another. Results of t-tests performed to examine differences in reverse logistics performance and satisfaction by internal vs. external disposition are presented in Table VII and Table VIII, respectively. t-tests for differences in means More internal More external Performance measure disposition disposition Environmental regulatory compliance 6.20 5.35** Improved customer relations 5.58 5.75 Recovery of assets (products) 5.11 5.00 Cost containment 4.84 5.03Table VII. Improved profitability 4.73 4.75Reverse logistics Reduced inventory investment 4.67 4.81effectiveness bydisposition: t-tests for Notes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all effective ± 7 = extremely effectivedifferences in means ** = Significantly different at p < 0.10 t-tests for differences in means More internal More external Satisfaction measure disposition disposition Quality of rework/repair 5.12 4.86 Vendors overall compliance with buying agreement 4.96 4.87 Level of returns allowed (use of cap programs) 4.96 4.70 Ease of obtaining return authorization 4.91 4.58 Timeliness of rework/repair 4.92 4.05**Table VIII. Length of time for credit processing 4.66 4.20Satisfaction with Handling reconciliation of charge backs 4.66 4.19reverse logistics service Use of Internet in processing returns 3.95 3.68by disposition: t-testfor differences in Notes: Seven-point scale: 1 = not at all satisfied ± 7 = extremely satisfiedmeans ** = significantly different at p < 0.05
The results indicate that assignment of disposition responsibility has The challenge ofnegligible impact on reverse logistics performance and satisfaction with the reverse logisticsservice provided by manufacturers/vendors. Only one of the reverse logisticsperformance measures, environmental regulatory compliance, was evenmoderately significant ( p < 0.10). Furthermore, only one of the reverse logisticssatisfaction components had a significantly different mean across the twogroups ( p < 0.05). Firms with more internal responsibility for disposition were 35significantly more satisfied with the timeliness of rework/repair. This result issomewhat intuitive. If the returned product is handled internally, it may becompleted in less time than if the product is returned for rework to the vendoror manufacturer. Thus, with the internal handling, the retailer is likely toreclaim value faster.Conclusions and future researchMore and more companies are having to deal with reverse logistics. Even thosewho have tried to ignore it in the past are working to develop standardizedreverse logistics processes. For example, in the early to mid-1990s, HallmarkCards representatives would collect and destroy out-of-season merchandise. Novalue was reclaimed. Today, Hallmark uses a third-party firm to collect excessseasonal inventory and repackage it for sale in secondary markets. Firms in thegreeting card and many other types of consumer goods industries are finding ituseful or even necessary to deal with returns in a more effective and efficientmanner. The current research sought to investigate reverse logistics programsuccess. The general performance and satisfaction levels reported byrespondents reflect the challenges and enormity of the reverse logistics task.Although retailers appear to believe that they are performing reverse logisticstasks fairly well ± they rate themselves moderately effective on keyperformance measures ± they are considerably less satisfied with the reverselogistics service provided by their trading partners. Several potentialexplanations exist. It is possible that the surveyed retailers possess someinternal biases working against the manufacturer, i.e. they may be adopting anegocentric or ``us versus them attitude related to service provided by theirtrading partners. Another possible explanation may be related to perceivedservice quality. There may be a ``gap between the expectations held by theretailers in terms of service quality and the actual performances of their tradingpartners. Furthermore, the complexity of reverse logistics programs,particularly within the catalog industry, makes it difficult for partners tounderstand exactly what the retailer wants in terms of service. In such cases,improved communications within the dyadic relationship could minimize thegap in service quality. In order to address these and other concerns related to the future of reverselogistics, further research is necessary. The current research examined reverselogistics programs only from the viewpoint of the catalog retailer. Differentperspectives related to reverse logistics performance and satisfaction might be
IJPDLM discovered when measuring the attitudes of the reverse logistics trading31,1 partner. Thus, to better understand the nature of gaps in service quality perceived and service quality provided, it would be useful to study both sides of the reverse logistics dyad using paired comparisons. Research should also focus on reverse logistics implementation within different industries. Catalog retailing is an especially challenging area for36 reverse logistics implementation given the aforementioned complexity of its systems. Research should be conducted that examines systems being implemented in other industries as well to develop generalizable results. These studies could be performed within the contexts of other catalog and non-catalog industries, and could also be used to identify ``best practices or pockets of excellence which could be imitated by firms in early stages of program development. The research should also try to isolate learning curve effects, if any, via the use of longitudinal techniques. Finally, future reverse logistics research should be conducted to determine the impact of outsourcing on program performance and satisfaction. In the current research, there was virtually no outsourcing used. However, some catalog retailers and many other retailers extensively use third-party firms for fulfillment and/or returns handling. References Andel, T. (1997), ``Reverse logistics: a second chance to profit: whether through refurbishment or recycling, companies are finding profit in returned products, Transportation & Distribution, Vol. 38 No. 7, pp. 61-4. Armstrong, J.S. and Overton, T.S. (1977), ``Estimating non-response bias in mail surveys, Journal of Marketing Research, Vol. 14 No. 3, pp. 396-402. Blumberg, D.F. (1999), ``Strategic examination of reverse logistics and repair service requirements, needs, market size, and opportunities, Journal of Business Logistics, Vol. 20 No. 2, pp. 141-59. Byrne, P.M. and Deeb, A. (1993), ``Logistics must meet the `green challenge, Transportation & Distribution, Vol. 34 No. 2, pp. 33-7. Carter, C.R. and Ellram, L.M. (1998), ``Reverse logistics: a review of the literature and framework for future investigation, Journal of Business Logistics, Vol. 19 No. 1, pp. 85-102. Clendenin, J.A. (1997), ``Closing the supply chain loop: reengineering the returns channel process, International Journal of Logistics Management, Vol. 8 No. 1, pp. 75-85. Giuntini, R. and Andel, T. (1995a), ``Reverse logistics role models Part 3, Transportation & Distribution, Vol. 36 No. 4, pp. 97-8. Guintini, R. and Andel, T. (1995b), ``Advance with reverse logistics, Transportation & Distribution, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 73-4, 77. Jedd, M. (1999), ``Going forward with reverse logistics, Inbound Logistics, Vol. 19 No. 8, pp. 46-52. Johnson, P.F. (1998), ``Managing value in reverse logistics systems, Transportation Research Part E (Logistics and Transportation Review), Vol. 34 No. 3, pp. 217-27. Johnson, P.F. and Leenders, M.R. (1997), ``Make-or-buy alternatives in plant disposition strategies, International Journal of Purchasing and Materials Management, Vol. 33 No. 2, pp. 20-6. Langley, C.J. and Holcomb, M.C. (1992), ``Creating customer logistics value, Journal of Business Logistics, Vol. 13 No. 2, pp. 1-27.
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