The reuse of process & system knowledge gained during the implementation of projects with the aim of reducing the implementation time and costs of related projects : the DCSA case study

Smith, Herman (2005-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 2005.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: At the beginning of 1999, DaimlcrChrysler SA prepated itself for becoming part of the family ofintcmational plants within DaimlerChrysler AG. To do this, DaimlcrChryslcr SA had to produce vehicles for the international markets and not just for the local markets. This meant that they were required to change many processes and systems. Many processes were aligned with processes used within DaimlerCbrysler AG, while certain standatd systems like PLUS. which is the shop floor control system, were implemented. A brand new SAP system was also implemented. During the implementation of these processes and systems, a documentation methodology was developed to ensure that the processes and systems implemented in South Africa, could be reused elsewhere in the world. At the same time, a project implementation methodology was also developed to ensure that this project and futw:c projects w· document processes and systems in this manner, while ensuring strict quality control. This study looked at the above methodologies developed at DaimlerChrysler SA with the aim of knowledge reuse and the subsequent reduction of cost and project implementation time. It was found that the process modelling methodology used at DaimlerChrysler SA was comprehensive. Compared to other process modelling methodologies available in the literature, the methodology used by Daimlc.tChrysler SA covered most aspects i.e. detailed organisation structures (e.g. line and staff relationships) and informacion structures (e.g. data file structures). Within the DaimlcrChryslcr documentation methodology a strong emphasis is placed on maintaining the link between the process and system documentation. This link is important during the system development cycle, as well as for the pmpose of reuse of software. International plants wanting to use the process and system documentation from DaimlerChrysler SA as a basis for their implementations could easily follow the documentation. The documentation flows from a high level process and system concept, to detail process descriptions, to system specification docwnents, and t \stly program names and customizing settings required for the use of the system functionality. It was found that the project implementation methodology used at DalmletChrysler SA was following conventional project management guidelines, whist ensuring the maintenance of process and system docwnentation as required by the reuse approach. DaimletChrysler's reuse approach of process and system knowledge is built on the foundation of using innovation teams in local organizations together with a team coordinating centralised rollout. The approach also focuscd on the development of certain modular components that can be 100% rcused. It was found that interfaces between the DaimletChrysler core systems were ideally suited for this modular approach. The International Production Template approach led to significant cost savings. So fat, each implementation showed an improvement in total project implementation cost and time compated to the previous implementation. Each implementation was also used as an opportunity to further itnprove the template by adding functionality and widening the scope. This study showed conclusive evidence that system and process knowledge can effectively be reused, resulting in significant cost and time savings.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Aan die begin van 1999, het DaimlerChrysler SA homself gereed gemaak om deel te vorm van die familie van intemasionale aanlegte binne DaimlerChrysler AG. Om dit te vermag moes DaimlerChrysler SA voertuie vir die intemasionale markte produseer:, en nie net vir die plaaslike markte soos in die verlede nie. Hiervoor moes hulle menige prosesse en stelsels verander. Verskeie prosesse is in Iyn gebring met prosesse soos gebruik binne DaimlerChrysler AG, tenvyl sommige standaard stelsels soos PLUS, wat 'n produksie beheer stelsel is, geimplementeer is. 'n Splintemuwe SAP stelsel is ook geimplementeer. Gedurende die implementering van hierdie prosesse en stelsels, is 'n dokumentasie metodiek ontwikkel om te verseker dat prosesse en stelsels wat in Suid Afrika geimplementeer word, in ander wereld dele hergebruik kan word. Terselfdertyd is 'n projek implementerings metodiek ontwikkel om te verseker dat bogenoemde en toekomstige projekte, prosesse en stelsels op hierdie wyse sal dokumenteer terwyl streng kwaliteitsbeheer toegepas word. Hierdie studie het gefokus op bogenoemde metodieke soos deur DaimlerChrysler SA ontwikkel, met die doel om kennis en kundigheid te hergebruik, en sodoende koste en tyd te bespaar. Die studie het bevind dat die proses modellering metodiek soos deur DaimlerChrysler SA gebruik, omvattend was. Vergelykende met ander proses modellering metodieke soos in die Iiteratuur gevind, dek die metodiek soos deur DaimlerChrysler SA gebruik die meeste aspekte o.a. die fynste besonderhede van organisatoriese strukture en inligting strukture (data). Die DaimlerCbryslcr dokumentasie metodiek fokus sterk daarop om 'n verbintenis te bewerkstellig tussen proses en stelsel dokumentasie. Hierdie verbintenis is belangrik tydens die stelsel se onwikkelings kringloop, asook vir die doel van die hergebruik van die sagteware. Sodoende kan internasionale aanlegte wat die proses en stelsel dokumentasie wil gebruik as basis vir hul implementasies, maklik die vloei volg. Die dokumentasie vloei vanaf 'n hoë vlak proses en stelsel konsep na gedetailleerde proses beskrywings na stelsel spesifikasie dokumente en laastens rekenaar program name en konfigurasie verstellings wat benodig word vir die beoogde stelsel funksionaliteit. Daar is gevind dat die projek implementerings metodiek soos deur DaimlcrChrysler SA toegepas konvensionele projek bestuur beginsels volg, terwyl die metodiek verseker dat die proses en stelsel dokumentasie soos vereis deur die hergebruik benadering, op datum gehou word. DaimlerChrysler se benadering van die hergebruik van prosesse en stelsels is gegrond op die die gebruik van innovasie spanne in plaaslike organisasies, saam met 'n span wat die uitrol daarvan koordineer vanuit 'n sentrale oogpunt. Die benadering fokus ook op die ontwikkeling van sekere modulere komponente wat 100% hergebruik kan word. Daar is gevind dat die koppelvlakke tussen die leidende DaimlerChrysler stelsels uiters geskik is vir hierdie modulere benadering. Die Intemasionale Produksie Patroon as benadering het tot aansienlike koste besparings gelei. Tot op datum het elke implemenrasie 'n besparing getoon ten opsigte van die totale projek implementeringskoste in vergelyking met die vorige projek. Elke implementering is ook gcbruik as 'n geleentheid om die patroon verder te verbeter deur addisioncle funksionaliteit by te voeg en die omvang te vergroot. Hierdie studie het onweerlegbare bewyse gelewer dat stelsel en proses kennis op 'n effektiewe wyse hergebruik kan word, en wat sodoende kan lei tot beduidende koste en tyd besparings.

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