Purchasing category management: Providing integration between purchasing and other business functions
Journal article, 2018

Organising the purchasing and supply management (PSM) function has been changing due to the increasingly strategic role of the function requiring integration with other business functions and the entire supply chain. One solution is to organise PSM into categories, a common practice in today's manufacturing organisations. In this paper we explore how purchasing category management (PCM) affects cross-functional integration. We analysed purchasing category management practices through in-depth case-studies in four manufacturing firms in two types of industry. Our research contributes to the purchasing and supply management research in two ways. First, it addresses the role of purchasing category management in organising PSM in large manufacturing companies. Second, it elaborates on purchasing categories providing integration between purchasing and other business functions, suggesting how different mechanisms are needed for different contexts.

Organisational integration

Category management


Case research


Purchasing category management


Purchasing category

Cross-functional integration

Supply management




Jussi Heikkilä

Tampere University of Technology

Riikka Kaipia

Aalto University

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Supply and Operations Management

Mika Ojala

Tampere University of Technology

International Journal of Procurement Management

1753-8432 (ISSN) 1753-8440 (eISSN)

Vol. 11 5 533-550

Subject Categories

Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics

Other Mechanical Engineering

Business Administration



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