Operational Integration in Health Care versus Mass Production

Inger A Øygarden Gamme, Geir Berg


Purpose: Operational integration has been studied by several authors. However, still there are many research questions to be raised.
Methodology/Approach: Two value chains have been studied within two different sectors: the health sector and the car component industry (mass producer). The research methodology is based on semi-structured interviews with selected persons from different levels within the organizations. The data was transcribed, coded and further analyzed to find enablers or disablers to operational integration in both sectors.
Findings: From this study, factors such as management commitment, co-location, and job-rotation can be seen as contributing factors in both organizations. Both experience disablers such as working as functional silos and little alignment of overall goals. Differences are seen in the greater use of job rotation within health care, while the mass producer had more mechanisms to facilitate working in cross functional teams.
Practical implication: This paper presents empirical findings of success factors and pitfalls for operational integration within the value chain of two different types of organizations. Based on this mapping, recommendations on how to achieve better operational integration will be presented.
Originality/Value of paper: The research initiative provides knowledge experiences from operational integration in two different Norwegian organizations representing two different sectors.


collaboration; health care; integration; inter-functional; mass production

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12776/qip.v20i1.658


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