Two Better Than One: The Link Between Management Systems and Business Performance

Vera Ferrón Vílchez, Nicole Darnall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Little is known about the complementary performance benefits associated with facilities' combined use of both quality management systems (QMSs) and environmental management systems (EMSs), and how these performance benefits might differ from those associated with facilities' use of only one of these management systems (or neither). We suggest that complementarities arise because each management system fosters the development of internal capabilities that facilitates the adoption and routine operationalization of the other, while maintaining differentiated goals that enhance strategic value. We examine these relationships using a sample of 2619 manufacturing facilities operating within six OECD countries, while controlling for self-selection issues. Our findings support the idea of complementarity, in that facilities that adopt both QMS and EMS are more associated with positive business performance than facilities that adopt either a QMS or an EMS on its own, or no management system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-240
Number of pages20
JournalBusiness Strategy and the Environment
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1 2016


  • Business performance
  • Complementary capabilities
  • Environmental management system
  • Financial performance, sustainability strategy
  • ISO 14001
  • Quality management system
  • Strategic value

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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