Computer aided tool management system : an implementation model
In recent years considerable attention has been diverted towards devising new strategies to deal with the competitive nature of manufacturing environments. Such strategies are often influenced by the costs and quality of the manufactured products. An effective tool management and control system can significantly contribute to the efficiency of manufacturing facilities by maintaining the flow of production, reducing manufacturing costs, and be instrumental to the quality of finished goods. Most companies however, have consistently overlooked the importance of tooling and its impact on the efficiency of their manufacturing facilities, consequently it has become a maior production bottleneck. Hence, the need for uncovering the nature, extent, and underlying causes of tooling problems. Having recognised the importance of a Computer Aided Tool Management And Control Systems (CATMACS) as a partial solution to the efficient management of tooling resources, the study then looks at the implementation of CATMACS in fourteen manufacturing companies in the UK, developing some 40 propositions. Based on the developed propositions, a framework for the implementation methodology is constructed. The framework consists of five phases; Tool audit, Strategy, Design, Action, and Review. The framework has been evaluated and the inputs and outputs to the phases have been identified. The framework represents a significant step in understanding of CATMACS implementation, in particular:
- It addresses the need for such system.
- It provides the basis of an implementation toolkit.
- It provides guidance for the best way of implementing a CATMACS.
- It is constructed using hard data.