Information Systems and e-Business Management

, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 613–636 | Cite as

Designing a supply network artifact for data, process, and people integration

  • Norbert Koppenhagen
  • Benjamin Mueller
  • Alexander Maedche
  • Ye Li
  • Stephanie Hiller
Original Article


E-procurement and supplier-relationship management systems have helped to substantially advance process execution in supply management. However, current supply network systems still face challenges of high data integration efforts, as well as the decoupling of structured data and processes from the growing amount of digitalized unstructured interactions of supply management professionals. Inspired by the room for improvement posed by this challenges, our research proposes a design for a supply network artifact in supplier qualification that addresses these problems by enabling holistic integration of data, processes, and people. The artifact is developed following an action design research approach. Building on a set of meta-requirements derived from literature and practice explorations, we conceptualize two design principles and derive corresponding design decisions that have been implemented in an software artifact. Finally, we formulate testable hypotheses and evaluate the artifact and its design in the context of supplier qualification. Our results show that the proposed design reduces mental effort of supply management professionals and significantly increases efficiency when performing typical supply network tasks such as supplier qualification.


Design science Procurement Supply management Supply networks Supply network system artifact 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Norbert Koppenhagen
    • 1
    • 3
  • Benjamin Mueller
    • 1
    • 2
  • Alexander Maedche
    • 1
    • 5
  • Ye Li
    • 3
  • Stephanie Hiller
    • 4
  1. 1.Institute for Enterprise SystemsUniversity of MannheimMannheimGermany
  2. 2.Faculty of Economics and BusinessUniversity of GroningenGroningenThe Netherlands
  3. 3.SAP SEWalldorfGermany
  4. 4.Siemens AGErlangenGermany
  5. 5.Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)KarlsruheGermany

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