An implementation model of a quality management information scheme for cellular manufacturing environments
As today's global competition grows in manufacturing industries companies are forced to work smart in all areas of operations, starting with suppliers and ending with customers. This competition in general requires firms to improve market responsiveness, product quality, use computerised information systems for production planning and control, have more rapid changeovers, reductions in setup times, work-in-progress reduction and hence throughput time reduction. In order to accomplish these formidable tasks, there are a number of management philosophies available for manufacturing companies. These include just-in-time, flexible manufacturing systems, computer integrated manufacturing, total quality management, concurrent engineering. Implementation of these philosophies, however, requires mass mobilisation encompassing many areas of operations such as production, sales and marketing, suppliers, finance, customer servicing, product design and method engineering, maintenance, personnel and training, etc. This thesis details a study which evaluates the total quality management philosophy in cellular manufacturing environment. Following this evaluation, a quality management information scheme, which is structured and integrated, has been produced using the Manufacturing Systems Analysis and Design Method. In order to manage smoothly this mobilisation and incorporate the scheme to other integrated functional areas, a new approach namely the Activity Based Implementation (ABI) has also been produced. Justification of the model from various points of view has shown that the model is expected to address a considerable gap in the area concerned. The model was designed to be used as an integrated part of a system or as a stand-alone scheme by quality practitioners, the management board of organisations implementing TQM and quality management researchers.