The development of a generic model for choosing a suitable traceability system for use in a manufacturing environment

Riley, Gareth (2009-03)

Thesis (MScEng (Industrial Engineering))--University of Stellenbosch, 2009.


Traceability systems are capable of both tracking and tracing parts. They offer many benefits to an organisation from assisting with recall applications to monitoring the everyday workings of a production line or supply chain. There are numerous methods able to act as traceability systems but only a few can be regarded as automatic and unique identifiers. Automatic traceability of individual entities is the future. It is already widely used by a number of leading companies throughout different business sectors and wide mass adoption is imminent. At present, they are slightly more expensive than the simpler technologies but once mass produced, the cost will come down. To completely understand how traceability systems are implemented, practical experience is required. When starting a traceability project, there are a lot of different options. The different systems offer their own set of advantages and some don’t work in certain environments. It was for this reason that The Decision Making Model was developed to assist users through the difficult initial stages of traceability implementation (i.e. choosing the system most suitable to a particular environment). This model was programmed in Excel and supplies the user with a number of questions regarding the environment the system would work in as well as the user’s requirements. The answers to these questions help the user work through the different types of traceability options to eliminate unsuitable choices. The result is an easy to use program designed with the ability to be upgraded as the technologies evolve.

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