Bridging the Gap: Refining a Workload Control Concept for Practical Implementation.

Stevenson, Mark (2006) Bridging the Gap: Refining a Workload Control Concept for Practical Implementation. PhD thesis, UNSPECIFIED.

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Workload Control (WLC) is a Production Planning and Control (PPC) concept designed for complex manufacturing environments such as the job shop, a configuration commonly found in Make-To-Order (MTO) companies. The Lancaster University Management School (LUMS) has been a major contributor to the popularisation of WLC since the early nineteen eighties. This thesis contributes to the further development of a WLC methodology developed at Lancaster, hereafter referred to as the LUMS approach. The majority of contemporary WLC research is simulation based; as a result, there is a lack of understanding regarding practical elements of the concept. This has created a void between theoretical aspects of WLC and the practice of MTO production. This thesis is case study based and considers two research questions important to improving the feasibility of applying WLC in practice and to the future development of a body of empirical evidence. The first question focuses on bridging the gap between the theory and practice of WLC by refining the LUMS approach. The second centres on identifying the implementation issues surrounding WLC and exploring how these can be addressed in a case study setting. A three stage process to refine the LUMS approach was undertaken. Stage One revisits the literature, identifying areas in which the LUMS approach can be restructured. Stage Two focuses on developing a Decision Support System (DSS) based on the LUMS approach, while considering the needs of present day MTO companies. This resulted in changes to key assumptions underpinning the methodology. Through the partial implementation of the DSS in a case study setting, Stage Three contributes towards both research questions. This produced inductive refinements to the concept, while issues involved in preparing the company for implementation were also explored, leading to the development of an implementation strategy and framework for WLC.

Item Type:
Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Lancaster University (United Kingdom), 2006.
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Deposited On:
02 May 2019 16:36
Last Modified:
12 Sep 2023 00:35