Fast fashion: the dynamic capabilities underlying project management in the UK fashion industry SMEs
AuthorsGodhania, Sonal Arjun
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AbstractThe UK Fashion Industry (FI) is both volatile and fast-changing. Notably, the clothing and jewellery industry contributes £16 billion annually to the UK’s revenues. However, small and medium-sized (SMEs) fashion companies are stressed to survive the harsh global competition. The companies have to manage their routine projects, thinking constantly about keeping their market position and how to develop further in their industry. Thus, the FI requires an in-depth understanding of the success factors to survive in this competitive marketplace. A detailed literature review has been conducted to discover the background of the FI and also to understand the basic requirements of daily operations and strategies used for development and growth. As there is not much empirical study available in the area of FI, a qualitative exploratory study has been chosen as the research methodology for this particular research. A multiple case studies approach was chosen to cover eight case studies located in Leicester, Luton and London. The study is interpretative and social constructionism is its philosophical approach; and hence, the context of the study has to be interpreted in its own ethnographical setting, why and how participants construct the meaning of project management (PM). This data triangulation provided the study qualitative credibility of the findings. The data analysis found four main themes, comprising fifteen sub-themes. ‘PM capabilities’ is the most important theme for completing the daily routine operations; these are also highly utilised in the UK FI SMEs. ‘Sensing new opportunities’ is the second important theme for advancing further; these are utilised by SMEs to remain up-to-date with the market environment. ‘Manufacturing capabilities’ is the third theme found helping SMEs with their routine manufacturing base in the UK: how they extended their trade through manufacturing. ‘Jewellery industry (JI) capabilities’ is the fourth theme helping the JI to outsource and deal with trust and relations in their trade. The study contributes to the UK FI SMEs by suggesting Dynamic Project Management (DPM) approaches specific to each industry, namely, the clothing, jewellery and designer industries. Research findings also suggest that new dynamic strategies need to be sensed, adopted and learned for the development and survival of these SMEs. The benchmarking tool, provided through status categories, will guide any company in the FI to compare its progress and take steps for further development. PM tools and techniques suggested for use by these FI SMEs will also help them with further improvement in project operations.
CitationGodhania, S. (2015) 'Fast Fashion: The Dynamic Capabilities Underlying Project Management in the UK Fashion Industry SMEs'. PhD Thesis. University of Bedfordshire.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
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