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Management of the industrialisation process in distributed geographical and organisational contexts
Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH, Industrial Product Development, Production and Design.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3361-6835
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Management of new product development (NPD) is one of the most critical capabilities of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). The industrialisation process plays a major role in NPD, where the final verification of the product and production system takes place. It is during the industrialisation process that various disturbances arise; if these are not managed, they can delay the production start and prolong production ramp up.

Based on two dimensions, geographical and organisational distribution, the following four different types of contexts are defined in this thesis: industrialisation in the local and intra-organisational context (type 1), industrialisation in the local and inter-organisational context (type 2), industrialisation in the international and intra-organisational context (type 3) and industrialisation in international and inter-organisational context (type 4). This thesis addresses types 2–4 and contributes to the literature, which has primarily dealt with the type 1 context. The purpose of the research presented in the thesis is expanding the knowledge on the industrialisation process in distributed geographical and/or organisational contexts with a focus on challenges and mechanisms; this will serve to control the challenges during the industrialisation process.

The findings are based on data from three studies in the manufacturing industry, covering both single and multiple case studies. They reveal that there are some similarities between the type 2–4 contexts and challenges and mechanisms previously identified for the type 1 context. However, several unique challenges and mechanisms are found for the type 2–4 contexts. The findings also show that the challenges can be characterised as internal and external. Internal challenges appear in a single industrialisation site and are associated with internal organisational capabilities at the site. External challenges originate from the research and development (R&D) site and the integration between the R&D and industrialisation sites.

The findings also reveal that the identified challenges disrupt the industrialisation process in various ways and create uncertainty and equivocality during the industrialisation process. The studies presented in this thesis show that, to deal with challenges that create uncertainty and equivocality, it is wise to allow ad hoc mechanisms to be used. One of the key conclusions is that when the industrialisation processes are carried out in type 2–4 contexts, there is a need to allow for flexibility regarding the use of mechanisms depending on the dynamics associated with the specific context.

Abstract [sv]

En av de viktigaste förmågorna hos ett industriföretag är att utveckla nya produkter. En viktig del i detta är arbetet med industrialiseringen, dvs det arbete som berör produktens överflyttning till produktion. Industrialisering är en del av produktsframtagningsprocessen och involverar såväl produktutveckling som produktion. Under industrialiseringsprocessen uppstår ofta olika störningar som kan försena produktionsstarten och förlänga produktionsupprampningen.

Med utgångspunkt i dimensionerna geografisk och organisatorisk distans, industrialiseringen studeras i denna avhandling i olika kontexter: industrialisering i lokal och intraorganisatorisk kontext (typ 1), industrialisering i lokal och interorganisatorisk kontext (typ 2), industrialisering i internationell och intraorganisatorisk kontext (typ 3), industrialisering i internationell och interorganisatorisk kontext (typ 4). Avhandlingen fokuserar på typ 2–4 kontexterna och bidrar till tidigare forskning som främst fokuserat på industrialiseringen i typ 1 kontexten. Syftet med denna avhandling är att bidra till ökad kunskap om industrialiseringsprocessen i geografisk och/eller organisatorisk distribuerad kontext med fokus på utmaningar och mekanismer för att hantera dessa utmaningar under industrialiseringsprocessen.

Avhandlingen bygger på data från enskilda och multipla fallstudier inom tillverkningsindustrin. Resultaten visar att det finns några likheter mellan kontexterna av typ 2–4 och de utmaningar och mekanismer som tidigare identifierats för typ 1 kontexten. Flera unika utmaningar och mekanismer förtyp 2–4 kontexterna har också identifierats. Resultaten visar dessutom att utmaningarna är av intern och extern karaktär. Interna utmaningar förekommer inom den tillverkande enhet där industrialisering sker och är relaterade till intern organisatorisk förmåga. Externa utmaningar uppkommer inom enheten där forskning och utveckling sker (FoU) eller i integrationen mellan FoU och den tillverkande enhet där industrialisering sker.

Utmaningarna skapar störningar i industrialiseringsprocessen på olika sätt och kan leda till osäkerhet samt tvetydighet under industrialiseringsprocessen. Resultaten visar på behov av att använda ad hoc-mekanismer för att hantera de utmaningar som orsakas av denna osäkerhet och tvetydighet. En central slutsats är därför att när industrialiseringsprocesser genomförs i typ 2–4 kontexter är det nödvändigt att tillåta flexibilitet vad gäller användningen av mekanismer kopplat till den dynamik som finns i respektive kontext.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Jönköping: Jönköping University, School of Engineering , 2019. , p. 140
Series
JTH Dissertation Series ; 047
Keywords [en]
new product development, industrialisation, distribution, integration, research and development, manufacturing
Keywords [sv]
produktutveckling, distribuerad, industrialisering, integration, FoU, tillverkning
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-45531ISBN: 978-91-87289-50-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-45531DiVA, id: diva2:1341987
Public defence
2019-09-06, E1405 (Gjuterisalen), School of Engineering, Jönköping, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2019-08-12 Created: 2019-08-12 Last updated: 2019-08-12Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. R&D in Sweden and manufacturing in China: a study of communication challenges
Open this publication in new window or tab >>R&D in Sweden and manufacturing in China: a study of communication challenges
2014 (English)In: Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, ISSN 1741-038X, E-ISSN 1758-7786, Vol. 25, no 2, p. 258-278Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore communication challenges related to geographic distance, with emphasis on differences in national culture and language between R&D and manufacturing engineers, in a development project faced with uncertainty and equivocality.

Design/methodology/approach: The results originate from a longitudinal single-case study of a commercial product development project.

Findings: Three communication challenges are identified: clarity of shared information, intention to share information, and responsiveness to information received. The challenges are strongly associated with differences in national culture and language. The study also indicates that the communication challenges cannot only be handled by the use of rich communication media, but also by employment of communication media of low richness such as e-mails or “picture books”.

Research limitations/implications: The single-case study approach limits the ability to generalize the findings. Future research should thus focus on additional studies of geographically separated R&D and manufacturing.

Originality/value: The results from the study provide important insights for the management of product development in geographically dispersed settings. The findings emphasize the need to consider potential differences in national culture and language within a product development team. Acknowledging these differences and managing them properly can support efficiency of product development projects.

Keywords
China, product development, communication, Sweden, culture and language differences, R&D-manufacturing interface
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-22414 (URN)10.1108/JMTM-09-2013-0128 (DOI)2-s2.0-84897855523 (Scopus ID)
Funder
VINNOVA
Available from: 2013-10-15 Created: 2013-10-15 Last updated: 2019-08-12Bibliographically approved
2. Bridging Geographically Distant R&D and Manufacturing
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Bridging Geographically Distant R&D and Manufacturing
2014 (English)In: Proceedings of the R&D Management Conference, Stuttgart, Germany, 3–6 June 2014., 2014Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Although important research has been carried out, knowledge on bridges between the R&D and manufacturing occupational communities in a cross - national context is lacking. Much of the research has emphasized on the different bridges - tools, object, practices, brokers designed by the company to bridge the occupational communities. To lesser extent scholars have observed the emergence of individuals who can assist in bridging occupational communities divided by the boundaries of language and national culture.

Drawing on qualitative interviews with persons belonging to a Swedish large manufacturing company, this paper describes and examines the emergent role of an engineer from an R&D center in China as a mediator of the two occupational communities. Based on community of practice theory, this study regards R&D in Sweden and the manufacturing site in China as members of two interdependent occupational communities that struggle to communicate due to barriers created by geographical distance – i.e. language and cultural distance. The findings suggest that the mediator from the R&D center in China may serve as an appropriate organizational solution in situation where geographical distance exist. The mediator role provides not only technical support, but also helps to crate shared meanings and facilitates the communication between R&D in Sweden and the manufacturing site in China. This study contributes to the R&D management theory by addressing an effective way to facilitate cross-cultural communication between engineers that are geographically distant during new product development.

Keywords
R&D, manufacturing, geographic distance, occupational communities, cross - culture, Sweden, China
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-28831 (URN)
Conference
R&D Management Conference, Stuttgart, Germany, 3–6 June 2014.
Projects
Distributed Innovation Projects: Management of Technological and Organizational Challenges in Distributed Settings (DINO)
Funder
VINNOVA
Available from: 2015-12-30 Created: 2015-12-30 Last updated: 2019-08-12Bibliographically approved
3. Managing disturbances during the industrialisation process from a supplier perspective
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Managing disturbances during the industrialisation process from a supplier perspective
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-45530 (URN)
Available from: 2019-08-12 Created: 2019-08-12 Last updated: 2019-08-12
4. Original equipment manufacturer (OEM)-supplier integration to prepare for production ramp-up
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Original equipment manufacturer (OEM)-supplier integration to prepare for production ramp-up
2019 (English)In: Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, ISSN 1741-038X, E-ISSN 1758-7786, Vol. 30, no 2, p. 506-530Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose: Although prior research provides evidence that production ramp-up is often disrupted by supplier-related problems, it fails to discuss how the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and various types of suppliers integrate their functions and operations to secure preparations for production ramp-up. The purpose of this paper is to investigate OEM–supplier integration in a new product development (NPD) project to prepare for production ramp-up.

Design/methodology/approach: The results presented in this paper are based on a real-time, longitudinal study of a single collaborative NPD project in the mechanical engineering industry. The NPD project involves seven suppliers and it is carried out in a large Swedish company (the OEM) and fits the theory-elaborating approach of this research.

Findings: This study argues that the aspect of timing in OEM–supplier integration, the OEM’s research and development (R&D) attitude toward collaboration and the OEM’s (R&D) operating procedure are challenges affecting the preparation for production ramp-up. The following three mechanisms to facilitate OEM–supplier integration in order to prepare for production ramp-up are also discussed: the mediator’s role, the OEM’s face-to-face meeting at the project level and suppliers’ formal face-to-face meetings with the OEM and internally.

Originality/value: This paper elaborates on and extends prior research on production ramp-up by conducting an empirical analysis that incorporates supplier integration in NPD. It bridges the gap between the literature on production ramp-up and on supplier integration in NPD and clearly indicates that supplier integration is an important prerequisite for successful production ramp-up. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2019
Keywords
Integration, Product development, Production, Start-ups, Supplier relations, Suppliers, Manufacture, Design/methodology/approach, Face-to-face meetings, New product development, Original equipment manufacturers, Research and development, Supplier integration
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-42406 (URN)10.1108/JMTM-05-2018-0156 (DOI)000459508200011 ()2-s2.0-85058096456 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2019-01-02 Created: 2019-01-02 Last updated: 2019-08-12Bibliographically approved
5. Integration of Suppliers’ Workflows in the OEMs’ New Product Development Process
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Integration of Suppliers’ Workflows in the OEMs’ New Product Development Process
2018 (English)In: Procedia Manufacturing, E-ISSN 2351-9789, Vol. 25, p. 479-486Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This research explores integration of the suppliers’ workflows in the OEM’s new product development (NPD) process, to support the production ramp-up. Based on multiple-case study approach, incorporating both the OEM and the supplier perspective, this research explains critical aspects for the integration of suppliers’ workflows in the OEM’s NPD process, and when these aspects need to be addressed. The results show that face-to-face meeting on a project level, standardized work model, readiness of the component specifications, role of Supplier Quality Assurance (SQA) engineer, quality assurance document provided to the suppliers, etc. are critical aspects.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2018
Keywords
integration, processes, supplier, workflow, OEM
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-41284 (URN)10.1016/j.promfg.2018.06.127 (DOI)
Available from: 2018-08-28 Created: 2018-08-28 Last updated: 2019-08-12Bibliographically approved

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