Small and medium enterprise transformation (South African manufacturing)

Van Niekerk, Dirk Bouwer (2002-03)

Thesis (MScEng)--University of Stellenbosch, 2002.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT "The environment sets many new requirements and SMEs can reactively adapt or they can design themselves to affect and operate in the environment as effective as possible. " - Trade and Industry Minister Alec Erwin (2000). The objective of this thesis is to assess how applicable transformation methodologies (essentially a design process) are to South African small and medium manufacturing enterprises (SMEs). Enterprise Engineering was chosen as the reference discipline for this study. Enterprise Engineering is an emerging discipline that draws upon a wide variety of reference disciplines as a foundation. Transformation from an Enterprise Engineering perspective is considered as a rigorous engineering approach through careful planning to transform an enterprise from a current state to desired future state. Two methodologies from the Enterprise Engineering discipline were chosen, and their applicability to serve as transformation methodologies was assessed for South African manufacturing SMEs. The thesis starts by stating the thesis objective, problem statement, approach followed, limitations of the research and thesis outline. Global competitive trends for nations and manufacturing enterprises are then discussed. The current South African environment for manufacturing SMEs is reviewed in order to better understand the specific needs for transformation. Current literature on the reference disciplines of Enterprise Engineering is introduced to establish a sound foundation for understanding the transformation concepts. Transformation, Enterprise Engineering methodologies and the type of transformation that each methodology presents are defined, and some important concepts of the methodologies are discussed and evaluated against prevailing South African practices. A pre-transformation assessment method is established to help in the decision process of whether a SME should go ahead with transformation at all, and if so, what the extent and type of transformation approach should be. An application for each of the two transformation methodologies is done. The Transform Enterprise Methodology was applied at a small manufacturer of microwave components for the electronic warfare industry, and the Master Planning methodology was applied to a business unit that specialises in rapid product development. The results of the applications are included in this report. Lessons learnt and conclusions drawn are presented in the sections following.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: "Die omgewing stel baie nuwe vereistes en klein en medium ondernemings kan reaktief aanpas of hulle self herontwerp om die omgewing te beinvloed en om so effektief as moontlik daarin te werk. " - Handel en Nywerheid Minister Alec Erwin (2000). Die doewit van die tesis is om te bepaal hoe toepasbaar transformasie metodologië is tot Suid Afrikaanse klein en medium vervaardiging ondernemings. Ondernemings Ingenieurswese is gekies as verwysings disipline vir hierdie studie. Ondernemings Ingenieurswese is 'n opkomende disipline wat gebaseer is op 'n wye verskeidenheid verwysings disiplines. Transformasie vanuit 'n Ondernemings Ingenieurswese oogpunt kan beskou word as 'n werksintensiewe ingenieurs benadering om 'n onderneming te transformeer van 'n huidige tot 'n toekomstige begeerlike toestand in ooreenstemming met 'n plan. Twee metedologië vanuit die Ondernemings Ingenieurswese disipline is gekies, en hulle toepasbaarheid om as transformasie metedologië gebruik te word is bepaal vir Suid Afrikaanse klein en medium vervaardiging ondernemings. Die tesis begin deur die tesis doelwit, probleem stelling, benadering gevolg, begrensing van die navorsing en oorsigtelike skema te gee. Globale kompeterende tendensies vir nasies en vervaardinging ondernemings word daarna bespreek. Die huidige omgewing vir klein en medium vervaardiging ondernemings in Suid Afrika word dan beskou. Dit word gedoen om beter te verstaan wat die spesifieke behoeftes vir transformasie is. Huidige literatuur oor Ondernemings Ingenieurswese verwysmgs disiplines word bekend gestelom 'n goeie fondasie daar te stel vir begrip van transformasie konsepte. Transformasie word gedefinieer en twee tipes transformasie metedologië word bekendgestel. Die belangrikste konsepte van die twee metedologië word dan bespreek en geevalueer teen algemene Suid Afrikaanse werkpraktyke. 'n Pro-transformasie evalueerings metode is opgestel om te help met die besluitneming of daar voortgegaan moet word met transformasie in 'n onderneming, en indien wel, watter tipe metedologie gebruik moet word en wat die omvang van transformasie moet wees. Toepassings van beide metedologië is gedoen. Die Transformeer Onderneming Metedologie is toegepas op 'n klein vervaardiger van mikrogolf komponente vir die elektroniese oorlog industrie, en die Meester Plan metedologie is toegepas op a besigheids eenheid wat spesialiseer in pas komponent vervaardiging.

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