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  • 1.
    Abdalrahman, Moutoz
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Brice, Alistair
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Effektivisering av en produktionsprocess: En fallstudie på Corroventa AB2019Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (högskoleexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [sv]

    En pågående fråga för företag idag är möjligheten att leverera ett brett sortiment av produkter, med kort ledtid och till låg kostnad. Det innebär att större krav ställs på att företagen ska ha en hög produktmix- och volymflexibilitet samtidigt som de håller hög effektivitet. För att uppnå detta krävs att företagen bland annat belyser de okända förlusterna i sin organisation och produktionsprocess för att sedan minimera dessa.

     

    Denna studie har tagit plats på ett industriellt företag som heter Corroventa avfuktning AB och är beläget i Bankeryd, Sverige. De specialiserar sig bland annat på produkter som används för att avfukta byggnader och neutralisera radonstrålning.

     

    Företaget producerar i huvudsak mot lager, väderförhållanden som skapar översvämningar och fuktskador kan driva upp efterfrågan till en punkt som företaget inte kan uppfylla med en tillräckligt kort ledtid för att vinna kundorder. Detta sätter press på Corroventa till att effektivisera och utveckla produktionen för att öka flexibiliteten och minska ledtiden.

     

    Fallstudien har genomförts på en avdelning som kallas för insatsmontering, denna avdelning är en förmonteringsenhet till slutmontering av produkten adsorptionsavfuktare. Avdelningen har identifierats som en begräsning för hela systemet när hög efterfrågan råder, därför har undersökningen utförts för att identifiera de underliggande problemen som orsakade begräsningen och ge förbättringsåtgärder på dessa.

     

    Med en nulägesanalys och ett teoretiskt ramverk som grund har författarna identifierat områden på avdelningen som kan effektiviseras. Rekommendationsförslagen inkluderar en ny produktionslayout, en mer balanserad monteringsprocess samt en minskning av materialhanteringen. Dessa förslag kommer att förbättra avdelningens produktmix- och volymflexibilitet samtidigt som ledtiden reduceras.

     

    Som ett sista steg har en diskussion och slutsats skrivits för att diskutera studiens validitet och reliabilitet, därefter sammanfattas förbättringsförslagen och föreslagna framtida studier som kan genomföras för att ständigt förbättra verksamheten.

  • 2.
    Abid, Muhammad
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsområde Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Özkan, Senol
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsområde Industriell organisation och produktion.
    The Relation between Lean Manufacturing & Customer's Demand Uncertainty2009Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Customer Demand Uncertainty is a big obstacle for companies to sustain their competitiveness in the market that responding customer requirements becomes essential. Besides companies need to consider also their cost structures which should have in high consistency to survive as well. Lean and Agile terminologies have been investigated so far in cost and responsiveness to customer manner within internal system perspective i.e. product volume and variety. This thesis aims to link lean manufacturing steps with customer demand uncertainty condition following information systems, marketing issues and human factor for management level in framework that firm’s (manufacturer) current condition can be tested according to answers from questionnaires and implementation of assessment tables since it is used as guideline and provides on which level firms are in demand uncertainty, lean and agile manufacturing. This support enables to firms to create their own flexible leagile decoupling point according to their interior characteristics and capabilities in the market.

  • 3.
    Ahl, Helene
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Högskolan för lärande och kommunikation, HLK, Livslångt lärande/Encell.
    Marlow, Susan
    Entrepreneurship and the postfeminist turn: Women’s final emancipation or the same old story?2016Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
  • 4.
    Ahlskog, Mats
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Bruch, Jessica
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Factors affecting development of production technologies in a machining environment2014Ingår i: Tools and Methods of Competitive Engineering 2014 TMCE 2014, Tools and Methods of Competitive Engineering (TMCE) , 2014Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this paper is to identify critical factors forcing manufacturing companies to improve the development of production technology in a machining environment. The focus in the paper is on industrial challenges within product design and production system development when introducing new products in a machining environment. Particular attention is given to the product development process and the production equipment acquisition process. A single case study is presented, consisting of interviews, observations, document studies and an analysis of a large Swedish manufacturing company. The case study company is characterized by advanced production technology, high mechanization and high automation level. In parallel with the case study a literature review was conducted in order to identify state-of-the-art methods/models for efficient design and product introduction within a production system. The paper identifies a gap in the current way of working within the case company as well as challenges regarding the development of production technology. Based on the study, the need for future research has been identified including the need of developing an improved working support for efficient production technology development when industrializing new products.

  • 5.
    Ahlskog, Mats
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Bruch, Jessica
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Joint Development of a Manufacturing Technology: A Longitudinal Case Study within the Manufacturing Industry2015Ingår i: 22nd International Annual EurOMA Conference EurOMA15, 2015Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    In order to compete within the manufacturing industry, there is a need to acquire and develop new manufacturing technologies to differentiate the company from others. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to analyse factors affecting development of a manufacturing technology in a joint development project with an equipment supplier. A longitudinal case study has been conducted at a Swedish manufacturing company and the collaboration between a manufacturing company and an equipment supplier has been studied. The findings reveal that tacit knowledge and good equipment supplier relationship are highly important factors that facilitate development of a manufacturing technology.

  • 6.
    Ahlskog, Mats
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Bruch, Jessica
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Managing early manufacturing technology development phases and key activities2016Ingår i: 23rd EurOMA conference EUROMA 2016, International Annual EurOMA Conference, 2016Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    In order to compete within the manufacturing industry, there is a need to acquire and develop new manufacturing technologies to differentiate the company from others. This paper builds on extant operations management and innovation management literature with the focus on how to managing early manufacturing technology development. A multiple case study has been conducted at a Swedish manufacturing company in the automotive industry and our paper proposes a conceptual process for early manufacturing technology development and the key activities therein. The findings are relevant for managers working with long-term development and the paper concludes by discussing implications and research limitations.

  • 7.
    Ahlskog, Mats
    et al.
    Department of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Mälardalen University, Eskilstuna, Sweden.
    Bruch, Jessica
    Department of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Mälardalen University, Eskilstuna, Sweden.
    Jackson, Mats
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan.
    The fuzzy front end of manufacturing technology development2019Ingår i: International Journal of Manufacturing Technology and Management (IJMTM), ISSN 1368-2148, E-ISSN 1741-5195, Vol. 33, nr 5, s. 285-302Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The fuzzy front end of product development has been studied extensively in previous research, while the fuzzy front end of manufacturing technology development has been largely neglected despite its importance. Only a few empirical studies that examine the fuzzy front end of manufacturing technology development can be found, which have been primarily carried out in the process industry. Therefore, the overall purpose of this paper is to explore the fuzzy front end of manufacturing technology development. Based on three case studies carried out in the manufacturing industry, the findings of the current research highlight key activities in the fuzzy front end of manufacturing technology development and suggest that the fuzzy front end has four sub-phases with overlapping development activities. 

  • 8.
    Ahlskog, Mats
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Bruch, Jessica
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Manufacturing Technology Readiness Assessment2015Konferensbidrag (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this paper is to analyze and discuss how the MRL scale can support the assessment of a manufacturing technology’s maturity level. A single case study within the manufacturing industry has been conducted investigating the use of a MRL scale. An assessment of MRL 4 has been studied.

  • 9.
    AKIL, ANIL
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Manual Assembly Improvement In Make to Order Production2015Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Manual assembly systems are widely used for producing customized products in make to order production. Despite their competitive advantages, manual assembly systems bring several problems to the production organizations. Early identification of problems on the production floor is very important in order to keep production processes running smoothly and efficient. Hence, this research aims to increase the knowledge of understanding problems related to manual assembly systems in make to order production and develop solutions for the problems. To be able to reach the research aim, two research questions were formulated. While, the first question investigates the problems related to manual assembly systems in make to order production, the second question aims to develop possible solutions for the problems.

    To be able to investigate the research problem in a real-life context, a single case study was performed at Volvo Powertrain F-Plant in Skövde, Sweden where there is a manual assembly of heavy duty diesel engine variants. In addition, existing literature was also investigated to make connections between the theory and the practice. As a result, the problems were revealed under six main categories as assembly processes, assembly operator learning, material handling, layout, ergonomics and information system. After revealing the problems, solutions were developed for each problem by using lean production principles and lean tools such as value stream mapping, standardized work. Moreover, other methods such as implementing kitting system, eliminating 7 waste in the production and implementing Takt time were also used to develop solutions. Based on the value stream mapping at the case company, improvements were developed and future state map was created for the case company. Evidently, the theoretical framework and the results from the empirical work were supported each other. At the end of the research, both research questions were answered and the aim of the research has been reached successfully.

    The results of the research could be used as a guide for production organizations with similar production systems in order to identify and eliminate problems in manual assembly systems in make to order production. In addition, this study could be a basis to investigate the problems and their solutions in manual assembly systems in make to order production. The problems and solutions in manual assembly systems in make to order production could be extended by applying new theories and methods in the research area as a further research.

  • 10.
    Akincilar, Sera
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Rad, Cameron
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Material Handling System Design: A Case-Study in Bosch Rexroth Japan2013Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    In today’s fierce competitive global markets, customers are demanding adjustable lot sizes, shorter lead times, higher quality and flexibility; in short, they want it all. In order to stay competitive in the market, companies need to attain both customer satisfaction and cost reduction in production operations. Material Handling Systems (MHS) is the place to accomplish this goal, since they have a direct impact on production. Therefore, the aim of this study was to design an in-house MHS that could be efficient for the production it serves.

    With this intention, a case-study has been conducted in Bosch Rexroth Japan. During the study, the information gathered through various sources; interviews, observations and measurements. Further, the gathered data is evaluated according to main pillars of the theoretical framework, which includes design principles and physical elements, information and software, human and management.

    By analyzing the findings from literature review and empirical study, first problems and challenges related to MHSs are identified. Thereafter, possible features that the system should posses are elicited and a design is built out of the selected features.

    To conclude, the results show that the success is not solely depending on system’s physical attributes; on the contrary, it is more related to rapid and accurate information sharing within the system. Another vital element is the interaction between system and the people, who are utilizing and operating the system. In general terms, the research took MHS design problems from one-dimensional equipment selection processes and enriches them by adding information sharing, human and management angles to design steps.

  • 11.
    Akincilar, Sera
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Rad, Cameron
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Material Handling System Design: A Case-Study in Bosch Rexroth Japan2013Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    In today’s fierce competitive global markets, customers are demanding adjustable lot sizes, shorter lead times, higher quality and flexibility; in short, they want it all. In order to stay competitive in the market, companies need to attain both customer satisfaction and cost reduction in production operations. Material Handling Systems (MHS) is the place to accomplish this goal, since they have a direct impact on production. Therefore, the aim of this study was to design an in-house MHS that could be efficient for the production it serves.

    With this intention, a case-study has been conducted in Bosch Rexroth Japan. During the study, the information gathered through various sources; interviews, observations and measurements. Further, the gathered data is evaluated according to main pillars of the theoretical framework, which includes design principles and physical elements, information and software, human and management.

    By analyzing the findings from literature review and empirical study, first problems and challenges related to MHSs are identified. Thereafter, possible features that the system should posses are elicited and a design is built out of the selected features.

    To conclude, the results show that the success is not solely depending on system’s physical attributes; on the contrary, it is more related to rapid and accurate information sharing within the system. Another vital element is the interaction between system and the people, who are utilizing and operating the system. In general terms, the research took MHS design problems from one-dimensional equipment selection processes and enriches them by adding information sharing, human and management angles to design steps.

  • 12.
    Alayón, Claudia
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Säfsten, Kristina
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Johansson, Glenn
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Sustainability in manufacturing: A literature review2013Konferensbidrag (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    Increased sustainability awareness among consumers and other stakeholders has created a challenging environment for manufacturers. In order to remain in current markets it is expected from manufacturer's operations to be conscious about their impact on sustainability issues. The paper reports on a systematic review which examines sustainability practices in manufacturing companies. The systematic review aims to identify empirical-based papers to pinpoint sustainability issues addressed within manufacturing industry. To do so, trending topic categories were identified for each sustainability dimension (environment, people and profit). This paper provides further direction for future research.

  • 13.
    Allen, Ann Marie
    et al.
    INSEAD Humanitarian Research Group.
    Kovács, Gyöngyi
    Hanken School of Economics.
    Masini, Andrea
    Operations Management & Information Technology, HEC Paris.
    Vaillancourt, Alain
    Hanken School of Economics.
    Van Wassenhove, Luk
    INSEAD Humanitarian Research Group.
    Exploring the link between the humanitarian logistician and training needs2013Ingår i: Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, ISSN 2042-6747, E-ISSN 2042-6755, Vol. 3, nr 2, s. 129-148Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose – The aim of this paper is to evaluate job profiles in humanitarian logistics, and assess current task priorities in light of further training and educational needs.

    Design/methodology/approach – The paper presents findings from a survey among humanitarian logistics practitioners and compares these to other studies in this area. It uses econometric models to evaluate the impact of managerial responsibilities in training needs, usage of time and previous training.

    Findings – The results show that the skills required in humanitarian logistics seem to follow the T-shaped skills model from Mangan and Christopher when looking at training wanted and time usage.

    Research limitations/implications – Survey respondents being members of the Humanitarian Logistics Association (HLA) may be more interested in developing the humanitarian logistics profession than other populations.

    Originality/value – This paper offers an insight in the specific skill requirements of humanitarian logisticians from members of the HLA and allows to understand which type of skills are linked to managerial responsibilities. The paper also establishes a link between logistics skill models and career progressions overall.

  • 14.
    Almgren, Martin
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Tryggvesson, Josef
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Analys av monteringslinan för luftbehandlingsaggregat (EC)2006Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of the work is to analyze and balance an assembly line at Fläkt Woods in Jönköping. The work is going to answer the questions about today’s throughput time, how much waste that occurs, number of staff at the assembly line, how the supply of material works and possible improvements that can be made at the work stations. The work is also going to give a proposal of improve-ments that can be made.

    The methods used to get the result include observations and measurements, con-versations with technicians and operators and also data from Fläkt Woods’ data-base.

    Large variations in throughput time are measured during the measure period, from 3 hours up to 5 hours and 35 minutes. These variations depend mainly on the time the air handling unit spends between the stations. The identification of the bottleneck was shown that it occurred in the last station in the assembly line. This results in a pressure from the stations behind with a long throughput time as a con-sequence. The largest source of waste is the operators’ waiting time. The measures that have been made show that the operators wait 33.4 % on average of the time available. The number of operators varies from ten to twelve during the measure period. This number of operators is too high in consideration of the high waiting times. It results in difficulties for the operators to move between the stations be-cause every station is fully manned. The supply of larger components for example fans, batteries, rotary heat exchangers and dampers for the air handling units are made by a truck driver. This leads to disorder in the work stations and fixed posi-tions for a number of smaller components and tools go missing.

    The analysis of the result shows that the pressure that occurs in the assembly line results in high throughput time because the units wait a long time between the stations. To eliminate these waiting times, a suction must be created. The difficul-ties for the operators to move between the stations can be solved with a lower number of operators. This makes it easier for the operators to move between the stations and reduce the waiting time for the operators.

  • 15. Almström, Peter
    et al.
    Andersson, Carin
    Muhammad, Abid
    Winroth, Mats
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Industriell produktion.
    Achieving Sustainable Production through Increased Utilization of Production Resources2011Konferensbidrag (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
  • 16. Almström, Peter
    et al.
    Andersson, Carin
    Muhammad, Abid
    Winroth, Mats
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsområde Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Hållbar produktion kan skapas genom ökad utnyttjandegrad2010Ingår i: Verkstäderna, nr 10Artikel i tidskrift (Övrig (populärvetenskap, debatt, mm))
  • 17.
    Almström, Rasmus
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Falk, Agust
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Överproduktion och dess samband med ekonomisk hållbarhet: Faktorer som bidrar till överproduktion2018Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

     

    Purpose– The purpose of this study is to investigate factors that contribute to overproduction and what economic consequence overproduction has. To fulfil the purpose, two research questions has been formulated:

    1. Why does overproduction take place in companies with CNC-machines?
    2. How does overproduction affect cost items that contributes to economic sustainability?

    Method– To fulfil the study’s purpose a single case study has been conducted on a manufacturing company within the automotive industry. Interviews, document studies and a focus group have been the methods for the empirical data collection. The empirical data has been analysed together with the theoretical framework and created the study’s result. 

     

     

    Results– The study resulted in identifying several cost items that are affected by overproduction and different factors that contribute to overproduction have been identified. 

     

    Implications – The study contributed with new information to the knowledge gap regarding overproduction and the consequences of it. Findings from the study can be used as a template for companies that are interested as to which factors contribute to overproduction. 

     

    Limitations– To conduct the study one focal company was used, the focal company is of a manufacturing type with a CNC-machine park and are active in the automotive industry. Because of the characteristics in the automotive industry and the use of only one focal company the generalizability of the study is reduced. To increase the generalizability further studies are required. 

     

    Keywords– Overproduction, economic sustainability, automotive, Leagile, Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE), Economic Order Quantity (EOQ), Just-In-Time (JIT).

  • 18.
    Amini Malaki, Afshin
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    A Study of the Effects of Operational Time Variability in Assembly Lines with Linear Walking Workers2012Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    In the present fierce global competition, poor responsiveness, low flexibility to meet the uncertainty of demand, and the low efficiency of traditional assembly lines are adequate motives to persuade manufacturers to adopt highly flexible production tools such as cross-trained workers who move along the assembly line while carrying out their planned jobs at different stations [1]. Cross-trained workers can be applied in various models in assembly lines. A novel model which taken into consideration in many industries nowadays is called the linear walking worker assembly line and employs workers who travel along the line and fully assemble the product from beginning to end [2]. However, these flexible assembly lines consistently endure imbalance in their stations which causes a significant loss in the efficiency of the lines. The operational time variability is one of the main sources of this imbalance [3] and is the focus of this study which investigated the possibility of decreasing the mentioned loss by arranging workers with different variability in a special order in walking worker assembly lines. The problem motivation comes from the literature of unbalanced lines which is focused on bowl phenomenon. Hillier and Boling [4] indicated that unbalancing a line in a bowl shape could reach the optimal production rate and called it bowl phenomenon.

     This study chose a conceptual design proposed by a local automotive company as a case study and a discrete event simulation study as the research method to inspect the questions and hypotheses of this research. 

    The results showed an improvement of about 2.4% in the throughput due to arranging workers in a specific order, which is significant compared to the fixed line one which had 1 to 2 percent improvement. In addition, analysis of the results concluded that having the most improvement requires grouping all low skill workers together. However, the pattern of imbalance is significantly effective in this improvement concerning validity and magnitude.

  • 19.
    Andersen, Ann-Louise
    et al.
    Department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Aalborg University, Denmark.
    Brunoe, Thomas Ditlev
    Department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Aalborg University, Denmark.
    Nielsen, Kjeld
    Department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Aalborg University, Denmark.
    Rösiö, Carin
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Towards a generic design method for reconfigurable manufacturing systems: Analysis and synthesis of current design methods and evaluation of supportive tools2017Ingår i: Journal of manufacturing systems, ISSN 0278-6125, E-ISSN 1878-6642, Vol. 42, s. 179-195Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    In today's global manufacturing environment, changes are inevitable and something that every manufacturer must respond to and take advantage of, whether it is in regards to technology changes, product changes, or changes in the manufacturing processes. The reconfigurable manufacturing system (RMS) meets this challenge through the ability to rapidly and efficiently change capacity and functionality, which is the reason why it has been widely labelled the manufacturing paradigm of the future. However, design of the RMS represents a significant challenge compared to the design of traditional manufacturing systems, as it should be designed for efficient production of multiple variants, as well as multiple product generations over its lifetime. Thus, critical decisions regarding the degree of scalability and convertibility of the system must be considered in the design phase, which affects the abilities to reconfigure the system in accordance with changes during its operating lifetime. However, in current research it is indicated that conventional manufacturing system design methods do not support the design of an RMS and that a systematic RMS design method is lacking, despite the fact that numerous contributions exist. Moreover, there is currently only limited evidence for the breakthrough of reconfigurability in industry. Therefore, the research presented in this paper aims at synthesizing current contributions into a generic method for RMS design. Initially, currently available design methods for RMS are reviewed, in terms of classifying and comparing their content, structure, and scope, which leads to a synthesis of the reviewed methods into a generic design method. In continuation of this, the paper includes a discussion of practical implications related to carrying out the design, including an identification of potential challenges and an assessment of which tools that can be applied to support the design. Conclusively, further areas for research are indicated, which provides valuable knowledge of how to develop and realize the benefits of reconfigurability in industry. 

  • 20.
    Andersen, Ann-Louise
    et al.
    Aalborg Univ, Denmark.
    Rösiö, Carin
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion. Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Industriell produktion.
    Bruch, Jessica
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Reconfigurable Manufacturing - An Enabler for a Production System Portfolio Approach2016Ingår i: Procedia CIRP, Elsevier, 2016, s. 139-144Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this paper is to investigate how the development of a strategically integrated product and production system portfolio could be enabled by the concept of reconfigurable manufacturing. In previous research, several critical challenges related to developing production system portfolios have been identified, but it has not been investigated how developing a reconfigurable manufacturing concept could aid some of these. Therefore, through a multiple case study, these critical challenges have been investigated in two companies that have recently developed reconfigurable manufacturing concepts for multiple variants and generations of products. The findings reveal that the companies need to deal with several challenges in order to enable a functioning RMS. By running the project separately from the NPD project and to include several product types and production sites the company overcome several challenges. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  • 21.
    Andersson, Anna
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Institutionen för innovation, design och produktutveckling.
    Jackson, Mats
    Efficient logistics development through regional collaboration2004Ingår i: Proceedings of the 6th research and application conference of PLAN 2004, 2004, s. 12-Konferensbidrag (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
  • 22.
    Andersson, Elin
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Holmgren, Louise
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Improving efficiency in material supply to assembly line: A case study in the automotive industry in Southeast Asia2015Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (högskoleexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose – The purpose of the thesis was to improve the material supply for assembly line.

    Methodology - The collected data were conducted through observations and measurements at the case company. Empirical data were analyzed and compared with the theoretical framework.

    Result - Several non-value adding activities were identified in the case study that resulted in 88% of the total working effort. These non-value adding activities were classified into wastes referring to Liker and Meier (2006). Six different wastes were found: excess inventory, unnecessary transportation, unnecessary movements, defected products, waiting, unused and neglected resources. Improvement recommendations were proposed to increase the efficiency of the material supply.

    Conclusions – There is at least one improvement proposal for every identified waste and combinations of these improvement proposals can reduce the non-value adding activities. Methods that can be useful to improve the material supply efficiency are change storage policy, reduce batch size, route plan milk-runs, implement standard work procedures and develop and integrate the information system. 5S and Kaizen are proposed theories that promote continuous improvements of the material supply.

    Research Limitations – Since there are many factors affecting the material supply, more improvement proposals could have been found without delimitation of activities. This thesis is based on a single case study which leads to generalizable results for only companies with similar circumstances.

    Further Research – By implementing the conducted improvement proposals a comparison of non-value adding activities is possible to strengthen the presented methods.Key Words – Material Supply, Lean production, Non-Value Adding Activities, Wastes, Efficiency Improvements.

  • 23.
    Andersson, Hilda
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan.
    Nygren Gustafsson, Lina
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan.
    Utredning av stopptider i ett täcklacksmåleri verksamt inom fordonsindustrin2019Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (högskoleexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [sv]

    Syftet med följande studie är att undersöka och analysera stopp och dess rotorsaker som uppkommer i buffertsystemet på ett täcklacksmåleri. Utifrån denna utredning presenteras sedan åtgärdsförslag i syfte att eliminera undersökta stopp. För att kunna uppfylla syftet med studien har följande frågeställningar formulerats:

     

    1. Vad finns det för stopp relaterade till buffertsystemet och vad är rotorsakerna till dessa?
    2. Hur mycket kan det akuta underhållet reduceras?
    3. Hur stora besparingar skulle företaget kunna göra genom reducering eller eliminering av stoppen?
    4. På vilket sätt kan en minskning av stoppen öka tillgängligheten för täcklacksmåleriet?

     

    En fallstudie har genomförts där historisk data har analyserats och personal från avdelningar som produktion, underhåll och IT har intervjuats. Den empiri som samlats in tillsammans med det teoretiska ramverket som presenteras i rapporten ligger till grund för resultatet, analysen och åtgärdsförslagen.

     

    Resultatet från studien visar att en stor andel av de stopp som sker i buffertsystemet orsakas av mjuka förluster. Dessa stopp är en konsekvens av bristfällig hantering av data och mjukvara samt bristfällig kommunikation mellan verkstäderna. Konsekvenserna av dessa stopp resulterar i ökade kostnader samt en nedsatt effektivitet för täcklacksmåleriet. Åtgärdsförslagen som presenteras ger företaget goda möjligheter att uppnå sin fulla kapacitet, eliminera stoppen och därmed öka effektiviteten.

     

    Studien är avgränsad till måleriprocessen och omfattas inte av grundmåleriet eller monteringen. De resultat, analyser och åtgärdsförslag som presenteras är avgränsade till de mjuka förlusterna som orsakar stopp i buffertsystemet.

  • 24.
    Andersson, Linus
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Polsten, Victor
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Effektivisering av två monteringslinor ur ett produktivitetsperspektiv2013Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [sv]

    Hur kan två automatiserade monteringslinor effektiviseras för att öka antalet färdigmonterade produkter i timmen? Denna fråga ställdes inledandevis vid utformningen av detta examensarbete, som är gjort i samarbete med företaget Thule Sweden AB (Thule). Bakgrunden till detta examensarbete är att Thule anser att två av deras monteringslinor inte når sin fulla kapacitet. Utifrån bakgrunden kom syftet att öka antalet färdigmonterade produkter per timme för respektive monteringslina. För att besvara syftet formulerades tre frågeställningar; Hur kan monteringstakten öka genom kortare upptäcktstider vid larm? Vilka rutiner kan implementeras för att skapa förutsättningar till ökad monteringstakt? Finns det möjlighet till ytterligare ökad monteringstakt? För de båda linorna finns ett mål uppsatt om hur många paketerade kartonger (fyra produkter per kartong) som ska göras i timmen, 90 respektive 100 stycken.

    För att besvarar frågeställningarna och på så vis uppfylla arbetets syfte har datainsamling i form av tidsstudier, observationer och samtal genomförts. Datainsamlingen har sedan analyserats för att skapa en bild av nuläget. Nulägesbeskrivningen ligger sedan till grund för förbättringsarbetet.

    Gällande lina X ansågs den största förbättringspotentialen finnas i linans larmsystem. I dagsläget tar det drygt 20 sekunder för operatörerna att upptäcka larmen. Upptäcktstiden påverkar antalet färdiga kartonger i timmen genom att utrustningen står stilla på grund av att operatörerna är omedvetna om larmen. Upptäcktstiden går troligtvis att sänka genom investeringar i larmsystemet. Under förutsättning att upptäcktstiden sänks till noll sekunder ökar monteringstakten med nästan tio kartonger per timme. Med en upptäcktstid på noll sekunder samt andra förbättringar kan monteringstakten öka med totalt 14,3 kartonger per timme.

    Lina Y:s larmsystem är annorlunda i jämförelse med det som finns på lina X. Upptäcktstiden vid lina Y är endast en sjättedel av upptäcktstiden för lina X, därför ansågs det viktigare att lägga större vikt vid att förbättra andra problemområden. För att förbättra en manuell monteringsstation gjordes en SAM-analys på en ny monteringsmetod. SAM-analysen visade att monteringstiden kan minskas från 8,45 sekunder till 7,37 sekunder. Det finns också en automatiserad station med 8,35 sekunders operationstid. Lyckas Thule reducera denna tid till en operationstid under 7,37 och att den nya monteringsmetoden implementeras kommer de få ut 15,6 fler kartonger per timme. Genomförs också övriga förbättringsförslag kommer monteringstakten öka med ytterligare 7,8 kartonger per timme.         

    Slutsatsen för detta examensarbete är att det går att öka antalet färdigpaketerade kartonger med 14,3 respektive 23,4 kartonger i timmen. Detta förutsatt att Thule implementerar de förslag som tagits fram.

  • 25.
    Andersson, Linus
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Polsten, Victor
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Effektivisering av två monteringslinor ur ett produktivitetsperspektiv2013Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [sv]

    Hur kan två automatiserade monteringslinor effektiviseras för att öka antalet färdigmonterade produkter i timmen? Denna fråga ställdes inledandevis vid utformningen av detta examensarbete, som är gjort i samarbete med företaget Thule Sweden AB (Thule). Bakgrunden till detta examensarbete är att Thule anser att två av deras monteringslinor inte når sin fulla kapacitet. Utifrån bakgrunden kom syftet att öka antalet färdigmonterade produkter per timme för respektive monteringslina. För att besvara syftet formulerades tre frågeställningar; Hur kan monteringstakten öka genom kortare upptäcktstider vid larm? Vilka rutiner kan implementeras för att skapa förutsättningar till ökad monteringstakt? Finns det möjlighet till ytterligare ökad monteringstakt? För de båda linorna finns ett mål uppsatt om hur många paketerade kartonger (fyra produkter per kartong) som ska göras i timmen, 90 respektive 100 stycken.

    För att besvarar frågeställningarna och på så vis uppfylla arbetets syfte har datainsamling i form av tidsstudier, observationer och samtal genomförts. Datainsamlingen har sedan analyserats för att skapa en bild av nuläget. Nulägesbeskrivningen ligger sedan till grund för förbättringsarbetet.

    Gällande lina X ansågs den största förbättringspotentialen finnas i linans larmsystem. I dagsläget tar det drygt 20 sekunder för operatörerna att upptäcka larmen. Upptäcktstiden påverkar antalet färdiga kartonger i timmen genom att utrustningen står stilla på grund av att operatörerna är omedvetna om larmen. Upptäcktstiden går troligtvis att sänka genom investeringar i larmsystemet. Under förutsättning att upptäcktstiden sänks till noll sekunder ökar monteringstakten med nästan tio kartonger per timme. Med en upptäcktstid på noll sekunder samt andra förbättringar kan monteringstakten öka med totalt 14,3 kartonger per timme.

    Lina Y:s larmsystem är annorlunda i jämförelse med det som finns på lina X. Upptäcktstiden vid lina Y är endast en sjättedel av upptäcktstiden för lina X, därför ansågs det viktigare att lägga större vikt vid att förbättra andra problemområden. För att förbättra en manuell monteringsstation gjordes en SAM-analys på en ny monteringsmetod. SAM-analysen visade att monteringstiden kan minskas från 8,45 sekunder till 7,37 sekunder. Det finns också en automatiserad station med 8,35 sekunders operationstid. Lyckas Thule reducera denna tid till en operationstid under 7,37 och att den nya monteringsmetoden implementeras kommer de få ut 15,6 fler kartonger per timme. Genomförs också övriga förbättringsförslag kommer monteringstakten öka med ytterligare 7,8 kartonger per timme.         

    Slutsatsen för detta examensarbete är att det går att öka antalet färdigpaketerade kartonger med 14,3 respektive 23,4 kartonger i timmen. Detta förutsatt att Thule implementerar de förslag som tagits fram.

  • 26.
    Andersson, Oskar
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Bylow, Jacob
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Lean Produktion inom prefabindustrin2015Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [sv]

    Examensarbetet utfördes på Kynningsrud Prefab AB i Uddevalla som tillverkar prefabricerade betongelement till byggindustrin. I dagsläget är företaget inte helt tillfredsställt med material-, produkt-, information- eller kommunikationsflödet i verksamheten. Kynningsrud vill därmed skapa ett eget produktionssystem, KPS, för en fortsatt expansion.

     

    Genom diskussion med företaget beslutades att arbetet skulle fokusera på tillverkningen av väggelement. Syftet med arbetet är att analysera och identifiera förbättringsmöjligheter samt ta fram förbättringsförslag med förhållningssättet lean produktion.

     

    För att eliminera icke värdeadderad tid, standardisering av arbetsmoment samt informationsspridning valdes de sju slöserierna+en och 5S verktyget som teoretiskt ramverk. Information om verksamheten samlades in genom observationer, intervjuer och deltagande. Genom en nulägesbeskrivning av väggproduktionen med tillhörande stödprocesser beskrevs  arbetsmoment i processerna. Beskrivningen analyserades sedan efter det teoretiska ramverket.

     

    Analysen resulterade i åtta förbättringsförslag som tillsammans skulle eliminera slöserier med en total tidsåtgång på ungefär 12 timmar om dagen. Det innebar en kostnadsreduktion på cirka 3,500 kr per dag. Sammanställning av den insamlade informationen åskådliggjordes genom en GAP-analys.

     

    Vid tid- och kostandsberäkningar används den lägst uppskattade tidsåtgången från observationer och intervjuer med personalen som därmed kan innehålla mörkertal. Det gör att de beräkningar som redovisas är i teorin lägsta besparingen som kan genomföras. Kostnadsreduceringen kan i verkligheten vara större vid  en implementering av förbättringsförslagen. 

  • 27.
    Andersson, Roy
    Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Ingenjörshögskolan.
    Quality-driven logistics2007Licentiatavhandling, monografi (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    The overall objective of this thesis is to describe and explain how different quality management philosophies can be combined in the supply/demand chain, in order to contribute to its resilience. The analysis is both quantitative and qualitative, based on theory and literature related to TQM, Lean, Agile and Six Sigma, one literature study and three case studies that were performed in companies. The studies are related to four research questions and are presented in four papers. The first research question focuses on similarities and differences between the quality management concepts TQM, Lean and Six Sigma. The findings were that TQM, Six Sigma and Lean have many similarities, but they differ in some areas. For examples Lean addresses process flow and waste, whereas Six Sigma addresses variation and design. The conclusion is that there is a lot to gain if organisations are able to combine these three concepts, as they are complementary. Two case studies and a literature survey supported the findings. The second research question focuses on outcomes in a logistics process if using quality management. The findings were that the quality management approach leads to risks being mitigated, managed and monitored and ensures a more effective, robust and flexible process, very much in line with the Agility philosophy. Solutions for quicker response to customers have also been introduced. The findings were supported by two case studies in seven companies. The third research question focuses on how prepared the transport- and logistics-oriented companies are for the application of quality concepts and quality management philosophy. The findings were that they can be described as being TQM-oriented. The companies do not consider Lean and Six Sigma to be future trends. Focus is on the customer, while they do not focus on variations or removing waste. The findings were supported by a case study in 24 companies. The fourth research question focuses on how quality concepts can contribute to risk control and resilience in an organisation. A combined Lean/Six Sigma approach by using Six Sigma framework and the last phase, Perfection, in the Lean concept, implies that the companies’ resilience, due to their strengthened ability to handle variability, risk management and agility, was improved. The findings were supported by two case studies in seven companies.

  • 28.
    Andersson, Roy
    Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Ingenjörshögskolan.
    Supply chain resilience through quality management2009Doktorsavhandling, monografi (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [en]

    The length and complexity of the supply chain tend to increase, rather than diminish, thereby making the supply chain riskier and less predictable and, hence, more vulnerable. At the same time, customers are becoming increasingly demanding. The challenge to businesses today is to create a resilient supply chain in order to manage and mitigate risk and vulnerability. The purpose of the thesis is to explore, describe and develop the use of a combined quality management philosophy in logistics processes in order to improve supply chain resilience. The findings are supported by six studies, which are presented here in six papers. The studies show that there is a lot to gain if organisations are able to combine quality management philosophies, as they are complementary to one another. TQM places its strongest emphasis on the commitment and involvement of all employees. Lean is a discipline that focuses on process speed and removal of waste in order to increase customer value. Six Sigma benefits from an added focus on variability and design of products/services and processes. It has been indicated that a combined quality management philosophy makes the logistics processes more reliable, flexible, agile and robust while reducing cost. The companies’ risk awareness has increased and their risk management has been improved, thanks to the Six Sigma training programmes and philosophy. Using a combined quality management philosophy, the speed of production could be increased, and the responsiveness and flexibility could be improved, which means quicker response to changes. It has also been indicated that a combined quality management philosophy improves the companies’ resilience, due to their increased agility and strengthened ability to handle variability and risk management. Quality management tools can be very effective in the companies’ efforts to control supply chain risk and to identify risk sources of variation, even outside the focal company. In Six Sigma projects, the root cause of variation is often found outside the focal companies, which requires more collaboration in the supply chain. However, if the companies that use a combined quality management philosophy intend to become more resilient, they must involve suppliers and customers more in their own processes and design products/services and processes together. Collaboration with the suppliers and customers and the notion of how to extend a combined quality management philosophy outside the focal company are of importance in order to make the whole supply chain resilient. This could lead to a problem, especially since the conditions for transport and logistics in regards to the application of quality methods and tools represent a large area, unexploited by the companies. On the other hand, Six Sigma has standardised training courses, and it has been demonstrated how a Six Sigma framework can enable collaboration across companies’ boundaries in the supply chain, with the use of Six Sigma training and the DMAIC-roadmap as a common platform. Even if a combined quality management philosophy is effective and efficient, the companies must re-invest in additional methods, tools and strategies to make the entire supply chain resilient. It could be this re-investment in risk prevention and mitigation solutions that enables faster process responsiveness, the establishment of a risk management culture by creating common values, culture and rules in the supply chain and the use of logistics strategies and methods.

  • 29.
    Andersson, Roy
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion. Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Industriell produktion.
    Manfredsson, Peter
    Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Textilhögskolan.
    Svensson, Victor
    University of Skövde.
    Preventive maintenance is an enabler for operation excellence in support processes2014Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    TPM in a Lean office environment can create values both in a business and an employee dimension. In the employee dimension TPM reduces the risk of missing/forgetting areas of responsibility and creates more involvement. In the business dimension objectives such as cost, quality and supporting the reduction of waste improved. Preventive maintenance meetings can be included and performed once a month in the ordinary departmental “stand-up meetings”. Methods like 5S, which need to be updated on a continuous basis, and standardized maintenance should also be connected to the TPM work. But first all employees should be trained in order to have the same direction/behavior.

  • 30.
    Andersson, Roy
    et al.
    Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Ingenjörshögskolan.
    Manfredsson, Peter
    Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Textilhögskolan.
    Torstensson, Håkan
    Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Textilhögskolan.
    How to Integrate Suppliers by Training in Lean Thinking2013Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose: Much research has addressed how to implement lean in a focal company, but little has been published about how to integrate suppliers in strategies and the focal company’s culture, such as lean production or lean thinking. The purpose of the article is to investigate if suppliers can become more integrated in the supply chain by training in lean thinking at the focal company and to explain a possible structure of the training.

    Design/methodology/approach: A multiple-case study has been conducted of the focal com- pany and five of its supply companies. The findings are supported empirically by on-site interviews and by observations, as well as by a binomial two-proportion test that was used to analyse the statistical data of the delivery precision.

    Findings: While the training programme does not show a conclusive result for the supply chain, it has made a difference for all participating suppliers. In most cases the training programme was a trigger that started or boosted the internal work with continuous improvements. In some cases it helped create structured ways of working and improved the internal production flows.

  • 31.
    Andersson Schaeffer, Jennie
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Akademin för innovation, design och teknik.
    Spatial design supporting the management of radical improvements within the manufacturing industry2013Ingår i: Proceedings of the 19th international conference on engineering Design, Seoul, Korea, Dem. Republic of: the Design Society , 2013, s. 129-138Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    It is important for the manufacturing industry to become more innovative. Doing what we always have done is not enough. External pressure and the required speed of change, requires industry to improve the management of incremental and radical improvement work. There is thus a need for new methods, tools, and processes to improve the innovative capabilities. In this paper we discuss the use of spatial design to support the management of radical improvement within the manufacturing industry. The designs of the physical spaces are in the paper presented as frames that are cultivating, facilitating and enabling radical improvement without imposing a regime of control and forced change. The spatial design enables the process and contributes to an ecosystem supporting radical improvement. To better manage radical improvement processes, one option suggested in this paper is to create five dedicated places - five enabling frames - for five phases in a radical improvement process, firstly to bring attention to the different phases of the process and secondly to support the actions in each part.

  • 32.
    André, Felix
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Effektivisering av lagerprocess kopplat till kundbehov2017Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
  • 33.
    André, Samuel
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    The Design Platform Approach –Enabling platform-based development in the engineer-to-order industry2019Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [sv]

    Tillverkande företag blir kontinuerligt utmanade med krav på kortare ledtider, lägre priser på sina produkter och en högre nivå av funktionalitet och teknik. Detta är särskilt fallet för företag som utvecklar och tillverkar högt kundanpassade produkter, även kända som engineer-to-order (ETO) företag. Den traditionella synen på produktlivscykeln introducerar kunden i försäljnings- och distributionsfasen, som ofta berör identifiering och överföring av kundbehov i kravspecifikationer som styr produktutvecklingen av produkter för slutkonsumenter. ETO-branschen skiljer sig i att kunden redan är involverad i offertstadiet och att en betydande mängd ingenjörsarbete behöver utföras för varje kundorder. ETO-företag kan således inte fungera som tidigare beskrivna företag eftersom specifika krav ställs direkt av kunden. Även motsatsen kan inträffa då en detaljerad kravspecifikation saknas och behöver utvecklas i samarbete med kunden. Det är inte ovanligt att produkter utvecklas i gemensamma projekt med kunden och att projekt drivs under flera år under vilka krav tenderar att ändras.

    Plattformsstrategier har accepterats inom industrin för att effektivt kunna hantera ett brett produktsortiment samtidigt som företagets effektivitet upprätthålls. En utmaning är dock hur ETO företag som står inför den verklighet som beskrivs ovan bör applicera en plattformsstrategi. Plattformsmetoder tenderar att kräva en fokuserad utveckling av plattformen vilket i sin tur kräver viss kunskap om vilka framtida varianter som ska skapas från plattformen. Forskningen som presenteras i denna avhandling undersöker litteratur och praktik inom industrin gällande utmaningar, behov och användning av plattformar. För att svara på det identifierade behovet föreslås en plattformsmodell och metod som utökar omfattningen av vad en produktplattform traditionellt har varit. Syftet är att stödja utvecklingen av höganpassade produkter när fysiska moduler eller skalbara komponenter inte räcker till. Det resulterande tillvägagångssättet, Design Platform (DP) -modellen, ger ett sammanhängande sätt för att hantera ingenjörstillgångar som ska användas vid produktutveckling och inkluderar både konstruktionsprocessen samt befintliga produktlösningar. Tillvägagångssättet bygger på att identifiera och modellera den generiska produkten och processen som är produktens generiska byggstenar, dess struktur och dess process. Dessa kopplas samman med de generiska tillgångarna som stödjer konstruktion och återanvändning. Genom att beskriva ingenjörstillgångarna, som är resultatet av teknik och produktutveckling, som färdiga konstruktioner, riktlinjer för konstruktion, krav etc. i ett standardiserat format, utvecklas plattformen successivt.

    Denna avhandling presenterar DP-modellen och implementationer som har fokuserat på olika aspekter av DP-modellen. Flera verktyg för att stödja DP-modellen presenteras och utvärderas i olika branscher samt diskuteras i ljuset av den forskningsmetodik och litteratur.

  • 34.
    André, Samuel
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Produktutveckling - Datorstödd konstruktion.
    Towards a Platform Approach Supporting the Interface Between Technology - and Product Development2016Ingår i: Proceedings of the DESIGN 2016 14th International Design Conference, Dubrovnik, May 16-19, 2016. / [ed] Marjanović, D., Štorga, M., Pavković, N., Bojčetić, N., Škec, S., The Design Society, 2016, s. 1987-1996Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The separation of technology development (TD) and product development (PD) is adding to the challenge that suppliers face. They are to conduct long term TD and at the same time tailor products when the order arrives. This paper proposes a platform approach in order to describe some conceptual knowledge. An example from the automotive business where early simulations of concepts are performed during TD is presented. The focus is on how these simulations can support the transfer of knowledge from TD to PD and how they are to be described in order to communicate the technology’s ability to adapt.

  • 35.
    André, Samuel
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    Elgh, Fredrik
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    Modeling of transdisciplinary engineering assets using the design platform approach for improved customization ability2018Ingår i: Advanced Engineering Informatics, ISSN 1474-0346, E-ISSN 1873-5320, Vol. 38, s. 277-290Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Original equipment suppliers (OES) that develop unique products are continuously faced with changing requirements during both the quotation and product development processes. This challenge is a different reality from companies that develop off-the-shelf products for the end consumer, which use fixed specifications and where product platforms have been a strong enabler for efficient mass customization. However, product platforms cannot adequately support companies working as OES. The reason is that a high level of customization is required which means that interfaces cannot be standardized, the performance is not negotiable, requirements are not initially fixed, and the specific system interacts with, is affected by, or affects other systems that are simultaneously developed in a transdisciplinary environment. The design platform (DP) approach provides a coherent environment for heterogeneous and transdisciplinary design resources to be used in product development by supporting both designing and off-the-shelf solutions. This research describes the introduction, application and further development of the DP approach at an automotive supplier to support the development of customized solutions when traditional modularity or platform scalability do not suffice. A computer tool called Design Platform Manager has been developed to support the creation and visualization of the DP. The support tool has a connection to a product data management database to link the platform model to the various kinds of engineering assets needed or intended to support variant creation. Finally, the support tool was evaluated by the case company representatives showing promising results. 

    Publikationen är tillgänglig i fulltext från 2020-08-08 00:00
  • 36.
    André, Samuel
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    Elgh, Fredrik
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    Supporting the modelling and managing of relations in the design platform2019Ingår i: Proceedings of the 22th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED), 5-8 August, Delft, The Netherlands, Cambridge University Press, 2019, Vol. 1, nr 1, s. 3001-3010Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    A common strategy which has in many cases become a necessity in product developing companies is to apply platform thinking to some extent. Engineer-to-order (ETO) companies are firms that need to invest in a significant amount engineering time in each product ordered by customers. These companies have in the past been known to not be fully able to apply platform strategies. An area of concern to product development is the design and manufacture of machine tools aimed for part manufacturing which is a large investment and a critical bottle neck. As a response to these challenges the design platform (DP) concept was developed which is founded on the re-use of company assets. This paper aims to investigate the application of the DP in a company designing and producing unique high-pressure die casting tools for different applications and customers. To enable companies of this character to utilize platform thinking to a higher degree and thus increase the efficiency in product development, a focus is set on modelling and managing relations within the DP. In addition, a PDM system setup is proposed together with an integrated support application for the realisation in industry.

  • 37.
    André, Samuel
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Produktutveckling. Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Produktutveckling - Datorstödd konstruktion.
    Elgh, Fredrik
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Produktutveckling. Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Produktutveckling - Datorstödd konstruktion.
    Johansson, Joel
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Produktutveckling. Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Produktutveckling - Datorstödd konstruktion.
    Stolt, Roland
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Produktutveckling. Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH. Forskningsmiljö Produktutveckling - Datorstödd konstruktion.
    The design platform – a coherent platform description of heterogeneous design assets for suppliers of highly customised systems2017Ingår i: Journal of engineering design (Print), ISSN 0954-4828, E-ISSN 1466-1837, Vol. 28, nr 10-12, s. 599-626Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Companies developing highly customised products are continuously faced with fluctuating requirements during the early and late stages of the product development (PD) process. This differs from companies that develop end-consumer products, which uses fixed specifications and where product platforms have been a successful enabler for efficient customisation. However, in the past, product platforms have not been able to fully support companies working in an engineer-to-order business environment. This article outlines the results from a three-year collaborative research project between academics within the area of engineering design and practitioners from the engineer-to-order industry. The research introduces a design platform (DP) that aims to support the development of customised products when traditional platform concepts do not suffice. The platform approach provides a coherent environment for heterogeneous design assets to be used in PD by supporting both the design activity and the finished solutions. The needs and abilities regarding such a platform were investigated through a series of interviews and workshops at four companies. Then, the DP was modelled and support tools were developed. Finally, company representatives evaluated the complete DP and its applications, reporting promising results.

  • 38.
    André, Samuel
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    Lennartsson, Martin
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Byggnadsteknik och belysningsvetenskap.
    Elgh, Fredrik
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell produktutveckling, produktion och design.
    PLM support for the Design Platform in industrialized housing for efficient design and production of customized housesManuskript (preprint) (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
  • 39. Ankarkrona, Jesper
    et al.
    Boldt, Simon
    Can lean and reconfigurability be combined?: From a manufacturing system investment perspective2019Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
  • 40.
    Arbabi, Mohammad Reza
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Investigation of volume and product mix flexibility in batch production2015Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    Today’s business environment involves a globalised market, greater than before competition and more challenging customers, all factors which contribute to higher uncertainty and variability. Manufacturing flexibility is becoming more important in order to cope with the complexity of products through frequency volume changes and evaluations of the technological requirements of products.

    The research for this thesis was performed within a subcontractor company, Laserkraft AB, who focus on laser cutting, turning and welding processes in their production. The company utilises a variety of volume and product mixes, which is in correlation with the objective of this study.

    The purpose of this research was to investigate the common source drivers in order to achieve volume and product mix flexibility on batch production systems. First, a literature review was conducted in order to build the framework of common source factors between volume and product mix flexibility. Then, a single case study was conducted to examine the outcomes of framework on batch production. In this case, qualitative techniques included interviews and an observation of the shop floor.

    The analysis of this study was conducted with empirical research on a case study and theoretical framework from literature. From the literature stand point; it was found that flexible manufacturing competencies (FMC) and strategic flexibility approaches are two main elements to determine internal source drivers between volume and product mix flexibility. The groups of common source factors were then analysed with respect to characteristics of batch production systems at the chosen company.

    A comparison between the framework and the empirical findings identified source drivers in order to achieve volume and product mix flexibility. Due to the limited nature of the study, all source factors that have an impact on achieving volume and product mix flexibility might not be presented in this thesis. Besides, it is difficult to generalise the result on a single case study.

    As a result, each organisation and industry refers to their product, process and type of layout, and requires a group of practices to achieve volume and product mix flexibility. This thesis concludes with the top three common source factors between volume and product mix flexibility such as: set-up time reduction, multi-trained employees and advanced manufacturing technology.

  • 41.
    Arfwedson, Daniel
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Isendahl, Johan
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Maskinteknik.
    Kartläggning och effektivisering av omställningsprocessen2016Självständigt arbete på grundnivå (kandidatexamen), 10 poäng / 15 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    In a global market, the competition is strong and companies are competing against each other all the time. By obtaining competitive advantages such as flexible production, short delivery times, quality and low prices, a company can attract major customers and create major advantages compared to their competatives.

     

    Kongsberg Automotive AB is a global company operating in the automotive industry and distributing goods to several famous brands. Due to high demands from clients, Kongsberg is working with continuous improvement which helps the company to develop and improve their effectiveness. One problem the company has had under observation for a while is their setup process. The setup process has not had a major change since 1996 when the company introduced a workstation that prepares tools for the production. The company has decided to investigate further into the setup process to see which improvements are possible to carry out the setup process. The investigation covered the setup time reduction through an analysis made by using the SMED-method in the program AviX SMED.

     

    AviX SMED uses video-recorded material were the most representative setup was used as an object. The program offers the possibility to analyze the video-recorded material using categorizations and by splitting up the various elements of the set of workers available. SMED is an elaborate method of setup time reduction which comes from Japan in the 1950´s and follows a number of different steps that should be taken in order to get the desired results.

     

    The investigation resulted in several suggestions for improvement where two different proposals for action was developed. The proposed actions were developed with a main focus on "with investments" and "without investment". The proposal without invesments was used as suggested actions to Kongsberg because investments were not the focus. The ”non investment”-suggestion reduced setup time on average by 29 % in four of the analysed setups. Kongsberg can continue to reduce setup time by technical efficiency but that requires more profound analysis of how complex features work and interact with each other.

  • 42.
    Arnesson, Fredrik
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan.
    Bengtsson, Johan
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan.
    Usability Evaluation of a Production System Development Framework: A Meta-Study Performed on the Use of a Production System Development Framework in the Development of a New Production System at Xylem2012Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Today’s competitive global market has placed companies under great pressure and the focus on production systems has been more prominent. Although there are several claimed benefits with using frameworks in the development of production systems, companies are reluctant to use these. Consequently, a relevant question formulation is: Are frameworks in the development of production systems usable?

    The purpose with this thesis work was therefore to evaluate the usability of production system development frameworks (PSDFs) in practice. In order to achieve this purpose, two research questions were established:

    RQ1.  How can usability of frameworks be evaluated?

    RQ2.  How does the use of a framework contribute to the development of a new production system?

    In order to answer the posed research questions, Bellgran and Säfsten’s PSDF was used in the production system development (PSD) process of a new production system at Xylem. Based on the PSD process, a meta-study was performed to evaluate the practical usability of the PSDF. Usability was defined and evaluated based on the five usability terms learnability, memorability, efficiency, effectiveness, and satisfaction.

    The result showed that all the five usability terms contribute to the usability evaluation of PSDFs. However, memorability was considered difficult to use on only one study since the user has to think a step further and make a qualified guess to answer if it is possible to memorize a framework. Therefore, it was considered memorability is only appropriate to use in a multiple study.

    The results also showed that Bellgran and Säfsten’s PSDF contributed most in the beginning of the PSD process by putting emphasis on the planning phase and providing a structure to follow. Due to the nature of a framework (i.e., to serve as a guide for structures to follow), this was not unexpected. However, the contributions from a structure or plan are hard to exactly distinguish. Since companies most often want tangible and accurate evidences, frameworks’ vague contributions are considered to be a major reason to why companies do not use frameworks more frequently. 

  • 43.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Fundin, Anders
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Exploring optimal flexible assembly systems2013Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    As a prominent part of manufacturing system, assembly system provides a platform for increasing efficiency while delivering various market demands. However, due to the lack of a unified and clear definition of flexibility in assembly systems, the recognition of optimal flexibility in assembly system without clashing with efficiency still remains elusive. In order to establish a sound basis to discuss the characteristics of flexible assembly and to address the question of reaching optimal flexibility, this paper makes use of a case study performed in five manufacturing plants. The study proposes a clear definition for flexible assembly and identifies six enablers for flexibility in assembly systems. Further in this research the applicability of few different types of manufacturing flexibility in assembly system is investigated. The paper concludes with discussions and suggestions for future research.

  • 44.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Fundin, Anders
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    The Essential Constituents of Flexible Assembly Systems: A Case Study in the Heavy Vehicle Manufacturing Industry2015Ingår i: Global Journal of Flexible Systems Management, ISSN 0972-2696, Vol. 16, nr 3, s. 235-250Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The major challenge of today’s manufacturing industry in tackling demands for a wider range of products with short life-cycle times and meeting customisation requirements has drawn considerable attention towards flexibility in manufacturing systems. As a prominent part of a manufacturing system, an assembly system provides a platform for increasing efficiency while delivering various market demands. However, owing to the dearth of a unified and clear definition of the constituents of flexible assembly systems, in both theory and practice, the recognition of flexibility in assembly systems still remains elusive. In order to establish a sound base for discussing the constituents of flexible assembly systems, this research paper explores the literature concerning flexibility in manufacturing and assembly as well as in flexible systems management domains. To reflect an industrial perspective, a multiple case study of five manufacturing plants in the heavy vehicle industry is performed. By identifying six essential constituents of flexibility in assembly systems, the study proposes a clear definition of flexibility in assembly systems which mainly revolves around mix and volume flexibility. To further enhance the findings, the compatibility of a few previously identified types of manufacturing flexibility in the assembly systems of the case plants is investigated and additional dimensions of flexibility in assembly systems are revealed. Finally, the implications for theory and practice as well as suggestions for future research are discussed.

  • 45.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Fundin, Anders
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Drivers of complexity in a flexible assembly system - A case study2015Ingår i: 48th CIRP International Conference on Manufacturing Systems (CIRP CMS 2015): Key Enabling Technologies for the Factories of the Future: Proceedings of a meeting held 24-26 June 2015, Ischia, Italy / [ed] Roberto Teti, Elsevier, 2015, s. 189-194Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Various ever-changing market demands have propelled manufacturing companies to offer product variety in an efficient and timely manner. Assembly as a key stage of manufacturing process is used to realise product variety through establishing mixed-product assembly systems. Although establishing a flexible mixed-product assembly system which both offers product variety and absorbs market demands fluctuation is pivotal for maintaining competitive edge in certain industries such as vehicle manufacturing, it is also considered an elaborate task which calls for further investigation. In this paper, complexity in a flexible mixed-product assembly line is investigated and the key drivers of complexity are identified. To fulfil the research objective, a case study during the pilot implementation of a flexible mixed-product assembly concept in a heavy vehicle manufacturing company has been conducted. The results indicate the key factors concerning assembly process, product design, and information and communication technology (ICT) which contribute to complexity in the flexible assembly system. The paper concludes with an outlook for possible future research.

  • 46.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Fundin, Anders
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Handling product variety in a mixed-product assembly line: A case study2015Ingår i: Proceedings of the International Conference on Engineering Design, ICED, Volume 4, Issue DS 80-04 / [ed] Cantamessa M.,Graziosi S.,Weber C.,Cascini G.,Husung S.,Marjanovic D., The Design Society, 2015, s. 41-50Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    In today’s fast-changing global market, using mixed-product assembly lines (MPALs) and mixed-model assembly lines (MMALs) allows manufacturing companies to be flexible and to maintain their competitive edge through product variety. Balancing and sequencing issues have been recognized as the main challenges of MPALs and MMALs, but other practical needs of MPALs remain unclear. Recognizing the practical needs of MPALs helps in identifying related requirements for product design, leading to products that closely align with the MPAL concept. The objective of this paper is to offer an industrial perspective on the needs of MPALs and to identify its requirements vis-à-vis product design. To achieve this objective, a single real-time case study in a heavy-vehicle-manufacturing company has been performed. The results from this industrial case study suggest that in order to handle product variety in MPALs and to reduce the related complexity, certain dimensions of flexibility need to be created in the assembly system, and requirements related to product design should be considered simultaneously in order to support assembly processes.

  • 47.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Fundin, Anders
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Identification of the causes of complexity in mixed-product and mixed-model assembly lines2015Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The increasing demands for product variety have directed manufacturing companies towards accommodating flexibility by establishing mixed-product and mixed-model assembly lines. However, since greater variety leads to increased complexity, establishing these assembly lines becomes complicated. By conducting a case study, this paper investigates the causes of complexity and the applicability of assembly instructions in one mixed-product and four mixed-model assembly lines in a heavy vehicle manufacturing company. The results indicate a set of causes for complexity and highlight the significance of assembly instructions, as the practical implications for development of flexible assembly systems and design of products closely aligned with them.

  • 48.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Västerås, Sweden.
    Jackson, Mats
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan.
    Fundin, Anders P.
    Mälardalens högskola, Västerås, Sweden.
    Implications of realizing mix flexibility in assembly systems for product modularity—A case study2019Ingår i: Journal of manufacturing systems, ISSN 0278-6125, E-ISSN 1878-6642, Vol. 52, s. 13-22Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    To enable the production of high product variety, mix flexibility in assembly systems is of paramount importance for manufacturing companies. Mixed-product assembly lines (MPALs) are growing as the key means of realizing mix flexibility in many manufacturing sectors, as they absorb volume fluctuations and offer high product variety. With the increasing product variety in MPALs, these assembly systems are becoming more complex. However, the practical challenges of these assembly systems, in particular those concerning product design, have not been adequately addressed. By performing a case study of a heavy machinery manufacturing company, this paper investigates the implications of realizing mix flexibility in an assembly system for product modularity. The findings pinpoint the low level of product modularity in assembly as the most important challenge in MPALs. Accordingly, realizing mix flexibility in an MPAL impacts product modularity through establishing a common assembly sequence and defining similar module contents across distinct product families. 

  • 49.
    Asadi, Narges
    et al.
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Schedin, Joel
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Fundin, Anders
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Jackson, Mats
    Mälardalens högskola, Innovation och produktrealisering.
    Considering assembly requirement specifications in product development: identification and approach2014Ingår i: FAIM 2014 - Proceedings of the 24th International Conference on Flexible Automation and Intelligent Manufacturing: Capturing Competitive Advantage via Advanced Manufacturing and Enterprise Transformation, Curran Associates, Inc., 2014, s. 969-976Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Due to the major advantages such as reduced time to market and improved quality at lowered cost, the principles of design for assembly capabilities and concurrent engineering are of great significance when developing new products. However, identifying assembly requirement specifications and considering them in New Product Development (NPD) in a timely manner, while securing efficiency and robustness of assembly processes, still remains a challenging task. In presenting a case study of an NPD project in a manufacturing company, this article focuses on the process of capturing and incorporating the requirements related to the assembly system during the early phases of NPD. Further, the results of the research study indicate the different assembly requirements in the case company and pinpoint the challenges in practices involved in handling them. The assembly requirements identified in this research reflect some of the challenges encountered in handling the requirements, through the investigated requirement practice. Based on the results, the issues of when and how to consider the assembly requirements are highlighted in the conclusions and suggestions for future research are made.

  • 50.
    Ascic, Ivana
    et al.
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Ascic, Josip
    Högskolan i Jönköping, Tekniska Högskolan, JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion.
    Competitive manufacturing in a high cost environment2018Självständigt arbete på avancerad nivå (masterexamen), 20 poäng / 30 hpStudentuppsats (Examensarbete)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: The movement of production to low cost countries has been a prominent trend during recent decades. The offshoring trend has primarily been cost motivated and has had a negative impact on domestic economic growth. Manufacturing firms operating in a high cost environment must strive to develop core capabilities to enhance competitiveness. In this study, the focus is on operations capabilities and improvement areas in a specific context (i.e. high cost environment).

    Purpose: The purpose of the study is to evaluate critical operations capabilities and improvement areas for competitive manufacturing in a high cost environment.

    Method: The research process is based on the evaluation of an existing framework of operations capabilities in a high cost environment. The study adopts a multiple case study approach in which three Swedish manufacturing firms are evaluated. The data collection was conducted through a quantitative part (i.e. questionnaire) and a qualitative part (i.e. workshop discussion).

    Findings: The findings revealed that 16 operations capabilities and ten improvement areas were considered critical in a high cost environment. Four critical capabilities (i.e. total cost, productivity, conformance and customization flexibility) are more prominent and appear in all three cases. Two critical improvement areas, total cost and dependability, are more prominent and have a higher occurrence.

    Implications: The practical implication of the study provides firms with an overview and better understanding of critical operations capabilities and potential improvement areas in a high cost environment. The theoretical implication of the study is that firm characteristics (e.g. size and position in the supply chain) influence the importance of each capability.

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