IIE Transactions

, Volume 29, Issue 8, pp 641–650 | Cite as

On postponement strategies for product families with multiple points of differentiation



Several researchers have studied the benefits of product and process design that calls for delaying the differentiation of products. Previous research has focused on products having only one point of differentiation. However, in reality most product families have several points of differentiation. In this paper, we develop two models to study products with more than one point of differentiation. In each model, we examine the benefits of delayed differentiation at each of these points, and derive the necessary conditions when one type of delayed differentiation is more beneficial than the other. Our analysis indicates that demand variabilities, correlations and the relative magnitudes of the lead times play an important role in determining which point of differentiation should be delayed.


Mechanical Engineer Process Design Lead Time Relative Magnitude Product Family 
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Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall 1997

Authors and Affiliations

    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Thomas J. Watson Research CenterIBMYorktown HeightsUSA
  2. 2.Anderson Graduate School of ManagementUniversity of California, Los AngelesLos AngelesUSA

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