To evaluate the level of uncertainty in the value streams that they were studying, LSDG researchers developed performance indicators for uncertainty within a structured survey format.
The LSDG audit team members used this scale of one to four to codify each of the value streams that they studied.
The bad news is that the Cardiff LSDG audits confirm Andraski's pessimistic characterization of current supply chain operations.
The results were measured by the host companies and audited by LSDG. These results shows substantial improvements.
The four divisions established by LSDG (minimal control, some application of lean thinking and material flow, evidence of good practices, and world class exemplars) correspond to similar frameworks developed by other research groups.
Each level of the Stevens Framework can be seen as comparable to the four levels identified by LSDG. At level four in the Stevens model, for example, full supply chain integration is achieved by extending the scope of management outside the company to embrace the suppliers and customers.
The four levels created by LSDG also correspond to "The Supply Chain Maturity Model" developed by the consulting firm PETM and its benchmarking subsidiary, PMG.
In general, PMG has found that while "internal integration" is the dominant stage of operational capability across most dimensions of the supply chain, the market leaders within various industries are already moving into "external integration." This corresponds to LSDG's findings for the automotive industry's value streams.
Having classified the current state of supply chain performance, LSDG wanted to provide companies with a map for reducing uncertainty and improving supply chain performance.