Research Methodology

Dec. 21, 2004

The IndustryWeek research project examining value-chain strategies, barriers, and perceived performance was conducted in association with Ernst & Young, the New York-based management consulting firm. To gather the information, 30,000 four-page questionnaires were mailed to upper- and middle-level executives on IW's subscriber list. A total of 2,108 responses were returned. Executives in companies of all sizes participated -- including 39.1% in firms with fewer than 500 employees and 31.5% in firms with more than 2,500 employees. One-third (33.4%) of the respondents are based at corporate headquarters locations, 45.8% at manufacturing facilities, 20.2% in division or business-unit posts, and less than 1% at warehouse/distribution centers. The survey data were compiled into a computer-searchable database to facilitate slicing and dicing of the data to examine various hypotheses -- for example, whether a specific practice has a positive impact on the perceived performance of a value chain or on the results achieved by companies that have adopted such practices. A number of examples showing cross-cuts of the survey data are included in this report. About Ernst & Young -- Ernst & Young is one of the world's leading providers of e-business services in assurance, consulting, corporate finance, and tax. More than 85,000 people around the world act as creative catalysts, joining forces with clients to do all it takes to achieve positive, significant change. E&Y pioneered the development of advanced solutions that connect clients, partners, and employees with E&Y resources and knowledge to help them rapidly reach their goals. Ernst & Young refers to the U.S. firm of Ernst & Young LLP and other members of the global Ernst & Young organization.

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