An Exploratory Study Of Automotive Customer Behavior Based On Supplier Evaluation Systems: The Case For Tsl Automotive (M) Sdn Bhd

by Hisham Bin Jaafar

Abstract

n today’s competitive business climate, buying firms increasingly rely on their suppliers to deliver technologically advanced, defect-free products, in a timely and cost effective manner. Yet too often suppliers lack the ability to perform adequately in one or more of these areas (Morgan, 1993). If the product or services provided by a supplier are deficient in some respect, the buying firm faces the decision of whether to look for an alternatives source of supply or to work with existing suppliers, to remedy any shortcomings. Due to uncertainty concerning locating a better source, and the high cost of searching for and evaluating new suppliers, buying firms may choose to continue to work with their present suppliers to improve performance. As stated by Sherry R. and Gordon (2008), supplier evaluation is also a process applied to current suppliers in order to measure and monitor their performance for the purpose of reducing cost, mitigating risk and driving continuous improvement. Thus, the supplier evaluation system and methodology approach adopted by the buying firms is possibly will impact the product or service on the existing suppliers. It is observed that, buying firms of the name identity have different method and approaches towards their supplier evaluation system. Even though they have different evaluation of supplier evaluation, but the ultimately are to meet a common goals or purposes.

Understanding customer expectations has been through the process of obtaining direct feedback from the customer which may or may not represent a formal codified response that can be benchmark against other suppliers or other customers. This study recognises the lack of such standardized tool and attempts to study the supplier valuation rating as a codified standardized instrument that reflect customer expectations from the supplier perspective. By analyzing the composition of the tool and expectations of the customer through both quantitative and qualitative indicators a more coherent understanding of the customer expectation can be derived by comparing with other customer supplier evaluation rating as well as other supplier performance compared with both ratings. 

e study involves two customers in automotive industry which is Proton Berhad and Toyota Boshuku where both of them are customer to TSL Automotive Sdn Bhd. In-depth interview methodology approach has been carried out to understand the customer (supplier) evaluation system and the impact to the supplier response. 

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