Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration (PhD)

Degree Level





Marinus J. Bouwman

Committee Member

G. William Glezen

Second Committee Member

Louis Glorfeld

Third Committee Member

John Ozment

Fourth Committee Member

Keith F. Sellers


Business initiatives, financial performance, initiatives


This dissertation examines the relationship o f improvement in financial performance with use o f new business initiatives such as JIT, TQM, and ABC. The investigation is organized into three areas o f inquiry that telescope from the general to the specific to reach a conclusion regarding the efficacy of initiatives. The first two studies contain regression analyses o f the association between the use of the initiatives and change in industry mean-adjusted ROI. The third study develops and test a comprehensive structural model that incorporates factors postulated by previous researchers to affect the efficacy of ABC. Data are obtained through a cross-sectional mail survey o f 1,058 internal auditors for the first and third studies, and o f 1,100 motor carriers for the second. Use o f initiatives is common and consistent across both samples with 78 percent and 72 percent, respectively, of firms reporting that they are significant users o f at least one initiative. Most firms use multiple initiatives concurrently and only 22 percent (21 percent) use a single initiative in isolation There is empirical evidence that initiative use is associated with improvement in financial performance. Findings include that ABC, TQM, CIM, Value Chain Analysis, and Flexible Manufacturing Systems are significantly associated with ROI improvement for manufacturers. Concurrent use o f JIT with TQM, JIT with CIM, BPR with TQM, and JIT with ABC in manufacturing create a positive synergy. Partnerships with Suppliers (PWS), EDI, Satellite Tracking Systems (STS) and ABC are significantly associated with ROI improvement in the motor carrier industry. Concurrent use of PWS with STS and of EDI with ABC generate a positive synergy. The third study concludes that positive synergies are obtained from concurrent use o f other initiatives with ABC. There is a positive association between ABC and improvement in ROI when implemented in complex and diverse firms, in environments where costs are relatively important, and when there are limited numbers o f intracompany transactions to constrain benefits. Finally, there is evidence that the measures “satisfaction” with cost system, “success” o f ABC, and “financial benefit” obtained from ABC that have been used in previous research are predictors o f improvement in financial performance.