Partner-specific adaptations, performance, satisfaction, and loyalty in third-party logistics relationships
First online: 15.02.2011
Cite this article as: Large, R.O. Logist. Res. (2011) 3: 37. doi:10.1007/s12159-011-0047-8
This paper addresses the question of the impact of alternative ways to partner-specific adaptations in third-party logistics provider relationships upon performance, customer satisfaction, and the degree of customer loyalty. It offers a view of related theory and a preliminary analysis of “request for quotation” documents. On this basis, several hypotheses are formulated. A questionnaire survey and structural equation modeling (SEM) are then used to test the hypotheses. The analysis shows that adaptations by logistics service providers exert positive influences on performance and customer loyalty. On the other hand, there is a negative impact of customers’ adaptations on performance because own adaptations are perceived as an effort. Nevertheless, the study provides evidence that the total effect of customers’ adaptations on customer loyalty is positive. The results suggest that third-party logistics providers should adapt systems and procedures to their customers’ specific requirements. Despite the negative impact found of customers’ adaptations upon the level of perceived performance, providers should promote moderate customers’ adaptations in order to increase customer loyalty.
Third-party logistics service Specific assets Adaptations Relationship performance Satisfaction Loyalty