A Case Study Improvement of a Testing Process by Combining Lean Management, Industrial Engineering and Automation Methods

  • Simon Withers
  • Jose Arturo Garza-Reyes
  • Vikas Kumar
  • Luis Rocha-Lona
Keywords: lean management, industrial engineering, automation technology, value added, process efficiency

Abstract

Increasingly competitive market environments have forced not only large manufacturing, but also smalland-medium size enterprises (SME) to look for means to improve their operations in order to increase competitive strength. This paper presents an adaptation and adoption by a UK SME engineering service organisation, of lean management, industrial engineering, and automation metods developed within larger organisations. This SME sought to improve the overall performance of one of its core testing processes. An exploratory analysis, based on the lean management concept of “value added” and work measurement technique “time study”, was developed and carried out in order to understand the current performance of a testing process for gas turbine fuel flow dividers. A design for the automation of some operations of the testing process was followed as an approach to reduce non-value added activities, and improve the overall efficiency of the testing process. The overall testing time was reduced from 12.41 to 7.93 hours (36.09 percent) while the man hours and non-value added time were also reduced from 23.91 to 12.94 hours (45.87 percent) and from 11.08 to 6.69 (39.67 percent) hours respectively. This resulted in an increase in process efficiency in terms of man hours from 51.91 to 61.28 percent. The contribution of this paper resides in presenting a case study that can be used as a guiding reference for managers and engineers to undertake improvement projects, in their organisations, similar to the one presented in this paper.

References

J.A. Garza-Reyes, I. Oraifige, H. Soriano-Meier, P.L. Forrester and D. Harmanto, “The development of a lean park homes production process using process flow and simulation methods,” Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 23, pp. 178-197, 2012.

R. Johnston, C. Chambers, C. Harland, A. Harrison and N. Slack, Cases in operations management, 2nd ed. UK: Financial Times Management, 1997.

N. Slack, R. Johnston and S. Chambers, Operations management, 6th ed. Harlow: Prentice Hall, 2010.

J. Motwani, “A business process change framework for examining lean manufacturing: a case study,” Industrial Management and Data Systems, vol. 103, pp. 339-346, 2003.

B. Emiliani, Better thinking, better results, 2nd ed. New York, NY: CLBM, 2007.

S. Alavi, “Leaning the right way,” Manufacturing Engineer, vol. 82, pp. 32-35, 2003.

S. Sohal and A. Egglestone, “Lean production: experience among Australian organizations,” International Journal of Operations and Production Management, vol. 14, pp. 35-51, 1994.

S. Taj, “Lean manufacturing performance in China: assessment of 65 manufacturing plants,” Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 19, pp. 217-234, 2008.

J. Womack, D. Jones and D. Ross, The machine that changed the world, New York: Rawson Associates, 1990.

J.A. Garza-Reyes, H.S. Parkar, I. Oraifige, H. Soriano-Meier and D. Harmanto, “An empirical-exploratory study of the status of lean manufacturing in India,” International Journal of Business Excellence, vol. 4, pp. 395-412, 2012.

M.I. Kahn, Industrial engineering, UK: New Age International Pvt Ltd Publishers, 2009.

Institute of Industrial Engineers, “What is industrial engineering? IIE official definition,” http://www.iienet2.org/Details.aspx?id=282, November 17, 2012.

W. Rodgers, Methods engineering, In: Maynard, H.B. (eds.) Industrial engineering handbook, 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1963.

G.J. Stegemerten and E.W. Demmler, Chapter 4: operational analysis, Maynard, H.B., Industrial engineering handbook, London: McGraw-Hill, 1956.

ASME Standard, Operation and flow process charts, New York: American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

E.C. Mead, Section 2 - Chapter 7: Making and using industrial motion pictures, Maynard, H.B., Industrial engineering handbook, London: McGraw-Hill, 1956.

R. Presgrave, Section 3 - Chapter 1: standardization of work measurement, Maynard, H.B., Industrial engineering handbook, London: McGraw-Hill, 1956.

M. Rother and J. Shook, Learning to see, Version 1.3, The Lean Enterprise Institute, Cambridge, MA, 2003.

M.A. Nash and S.R. Poling, Mapping the total value stream: a comprehensive guide for production and transactional processes, New York:Productivity Press, 2008.

J. Liker, The Toyota way: 14 management principles from the world’s greatest manufacturer, New York: McGraw-Hill, 2004.

P. Hines, M. Holweg and N. Rich, “Learning to evolve: a review of contemporary lean thinking, International Journal of Operations and Production Management, vol. 24, pp. 994-1011, 2004.

W.A. Wolovich, Automatic control systems: basic analysis and design, London: Saunders College Publishing, 1994.

D.M. Considine and G.D. Considine, Standard handbook of industrial automation, London: Chapman and Hall Ltd, 1986.

W.A. Band, Creating value for customers, New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1991.

B.Y. Gale, Managing customer value, creating quality and service that customers can see, New York: The Free Press, 1994.

E. Naumann, Creating customer value, the path to sustainable competitive advantage, Cincinnati, OH: Thomson Executive Press, 1995.

T.B. Sheridan, Humans and automation, New York: Wiley and Sons Inc.

S.J. Oakland, Total quality management: the route to improving performance, Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann Ltd.

Published
2013-07-01
How to Cite
[1]
S. Withers, J. A. Garza-Reyes, V. Kumar, and L. Rocha-Lona, “A Case Study Improvement of a Testing Process by Combining Lean Management, Industrial Engineering and Automation Methods”, Int. j. eng. technol. innov., vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 134-143, Jul. 2013.
Section
Articles