Effect of benchmarking on performance: Evidence from freight forwarding firms in Kenya
ABSTRACT The purpose of this study was to establish the effect of benchmarking on performance of freight forwarding firms in Kenya. For the purposes of this study, the researcher employed a descriptive research design. The target population composed of 60 firms currently employed at freight forwarding firms in Nairobi. For convenience, the researcher selected a sample of 30 freight forwarding firms in Kenya using convenience sampling method. The researcher employed the use of survey questionnaire for data collection. Secondary data was also collected for this study. Quantitative data collected was analyzed by the use of descriptive statistics while content analysis was used to data that is qualitative nature. The study found that way in which benchmarking was being used in freight and forwarding companies was as an incremental continuous improvement tool and for major changes of process re-engineering. The factors enhance benchmarking success freight and forwarding companies include; internal assessment, management commitment, benchmarking limitation, employee participation and role of quality department. The study revealed that operational benchmarking was being used to a very great extent were setting realistic timetables and being composed of interested motivated people, identify targets in advance, understanding the processes behind the data, picking the correct business partners and allies, following proper protocol, Focus on relevant work-group-level issues and being tied to the freight forwarding firm overall strategic objectives and Collecting manageable bodies of data. Benchmarking activities must be specific to the environment and constraints of these organisations if the implementation of the practices identified by such activities is to succeed and result in increased performance. From the findings the study concludes that benchmarking practices adopted by freight and forwarding companies affect the performance of freight forwarding firms in Kenya. The study concludes that the benchmarking practices adopted by freight forwarding firms in Kenya were operational benchmarking ,strategic benchmarking, industry ,internal benchmarking, process (or generic) benchmarking, futures benchmarking, product benchmarking and financial benchmarking. The study recommends that organization in Kenya must address the obstacle that affects proper implementation of benchmarking practices in Kenya in order for them to improve their performance.