Best practice in Australian manufacturing sites

2017-06-08T05:46:04Z (GMT) by Beaumont, Nicholas
This paper delineates the concept of Best Practice (BP); demonstrates that the practices of Australian manufactures subscribing to best practice are significantly different from those that do not; and determines whether components of best practice used by industry match components recognized by researchers. A search of the literature for definitions of BP and a statistical analysis of a survey completed by 962 Australian manufacturing sites were used. Most definitions of BP comprise lists of components that vary significantly amongst authors and do not reflect strong theoretical bases but researchers and practitioners use roughly similar definitions. There are significant differences between the strategies and practices of Australian manufacturers that use BP and those that do not. It is difficult to prove that BP causes superior performance. Internal efforts to improve performance may be masked by their lagged effects and events external to the organization. Superior performance might be caused by energetic management in part manifest in BP and other improvement programs. Nevertheless, having a BP program is strongly associated with traits such as proactivity, internal communication, training and leadership that should be commercially advantageous. Manufacturers should therefore consider implementing BP programs. This paper clarifies definitions of BP and conclusively demonstrates that the practices of Australian organizations subscribing to BP are significantly different from those that do not.