The application of operational excellence methodologies in logistics: a systematic review and directions for future research

Yaifa Trakulsunti, Jiju Antony, Raja Jayaraman, Guilherme Tortorella

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    4 Scopus citations


    This paper systematically reviews the literature around implementing operational excellence methodologies in logistics, to better understand the scope of such initiatives, identify key research gaps and suggest future research directions. Four databases (Web of Science, Scopus, Emerald, Science Direct) were searched to collect relevant articles published from 1996 to 2021. A total of 58 articles met the initial inclusion criteria. These were critically reviewed by authors, resulting in a total of 36 empirical articles for final analysis. The application of operational excellence methodologies in logistics can improve logistics operations, enhance customer satisfaction, reduce lead time and save cost. The challenges encountered during the implementation of operational excellence methodologies include lack of LSS implementation guidelines, insufficient LSS training, lack of management support and resources, and resistance to change. The review highlights that training, management involvement, strategic and visionary leadership, organizational infrastructure and cross-functional teams are the factors leading to the successful implementation This is the first attempt by reviewing the literature to address the research gaps in the use of operational excellence methodologies in the logistics sector. This review is valuable for logistics managers wishing to improve logistics operations in their organizations, improve safety, reduce operational costs and increase customer satisfaction.

    Original languageBritish English
    Pages (from-to)538-557
    Number of pages20
    JournalTotal Quality Management and Business Excellence
    Issue number5-6
    StatePublished - 2023


    • agile
    • lean six sigma
    • logistics
    • operational excellence methodologies
    • systematic review
    • transportation


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