There is little empirical research on the relational capabilities and competences in supply chain relationships, and the important links that exist between relational capabilities, competences and supply chain innovation. This study addresses some of that knowledge gap gained through a case study of the Australian freight services sector. Findings suggest that different competences developed by supply chain participants support different ways to enable operational effectiveness. Road freight businesses should acquire knowledge of how to select and manage inter-firm relationships that provide the greatest benefit, acquiring competences that either improve their current capabilities or assist them to explore strategies that ensure incremental innovation and supply chain performance objectives are met.
Keywords: supply chain relationships, competences, capabilities, innovation capacity