First scan for the potential adoption of a sustainable city logistics model: The case of PostNL
Rees Vellinga, V.C. van
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Introduction: Innovation is a major factor in both business survival and in achieving and sustaining competitive advantage, which can be visualized in the Product Life Cycle (PLC). The PLC details how sources of competitive advantage can change over time. In this thesis emphasis is placed on incumbents, which react slowly to change and rarely introduce innovations. However, the process of innovation is highly relevant for incumbents, in order for them to maintain a competitive position whilst dealing with external changes. Case: This thesis focused on a specific Dutch incumbent: PostNL, which recently introduced a new, innovative department ‘City Logistics’ in Delft. City Logistics aims to create a logistical hub at the outskirts of the city of Delft, from which small electric vehicles provide flexible delivery and retrieval services whilst simultaneously inflicting a minimized impact on the environment and quality of life. In order for PostNL to be able to explore this new sustainable business model, five sustainable services were designed, namely: bundling of supplies, same day delivery, delivery on another day, express delivery and collection of dry waste. The rate in which this innovative idea was perceived as relevant by individuals, was determined by the rate of adoption, which includes five attributes: relative advantage, compatibility, complexity, trialability and observability. This research investigated which of the sustainable services have the highest potential to be adopted by the retailers in Delft. Method: A questionnaire was developed and data was collected from 143 retailers. Chronbach’s alpha was used to test reliability of the scales of the questionnaire; factorial analysis was conducted to prepare data for analysis. Data was analyzed using one-way repeated measures ANOVA’s. Results: In general respondents were negative about the sustainable services. However, more than half (56%) of the retailers intent to use the services in the future. Same day delivery had the highest scores on relative advantage, compatibility and trialability, combined with the lowest score on complexity. The retailers stated that they desire services which cater to their current difficult financial position, or which alleviate the current unpleasant shopping conditions. Analysis: The majority of the retailers currently have no intention to adopt the sustainable services, since they see little advantages in using the services. The services were not compatible with existing activities, not easy to understand, not suitable to use in the future and not readily observable. The same day delivery service had the highest potential to be adopted.