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Production ramp-up involves the transition of a new product, starting from the end of the product development stage and continuing over to commercial production. It ends when full capacity production is reached. Ramp-up is acquiring increasing importance, on account of, e.g., shorter product lifecycles, a higher pace of innovation, or a broader product range. To implement a well-managed ramp-up and to benefit from the advantages that this implies, a variety of aspects, such as logistics, organizational forms, or quality systems, have been proposed. But even though the ramp-up represents a learning opportunity with a far-reaching influence, learning remains a subordinate research topic.
This dissertation addresses this research gap and investigates aspects of learning at different levels of abstraction, starting at a very basic level of individual workers, continuing with individual workers in a ramp-up-related environment and organizational learning within an entire ramp-up project, and finally moving up to the more involved level of consecutive ramp-up projects. To answer the stated research questions, different research methods, such as laboratory experiments, computer simulations, and surveys, were used.
The results show, inter alia, that the performance of persons coping with a complex system, i.e. the ramp-up, can be increased when they are provided with a structured method of thinking. Further results focus on the behavior of workers in a dynamic production environment and how they might be assigned to different workstations. The relationship between autonomous and deliberate learning is also investigated. This is especially of importance for ramp-up situations, as the understanding of the system must be developed in the first instance. Finally, the relevance of a knowledge management system is strengthened empirically, indicating that learning from previous ramp-up projects increases the performance of subsequent ones. Overall, the importance of learning at all levels of ramp-up management is shown.
keywordsBetriebswirtschaft Experiment Knowledge Management Organisation Organizational Learning Production Ramp-Up Produktion Simulation Survey System Dynamics Systems Thinking
Ihr Werk im Verlag Dr. Kovač
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