Flexibility is a key component in any agile manufacturing enterprise. A methodology that a firm may use to design, build and then implement a flexible manufacturing (FM) solution is presented. An FM solution is defined as an operational intervention that helps the company counter the changes in its internal and external environments. The methodology was developed in collaboration with several industrial partners, and is easy to use and readily applicable in an industrial setting. The FM solution design method is structured as a three-phase execution. Phase I involves identifying the flexibility needs of the company. Phase II is the actual development of the FM solution and includes models for measuring the current and target flexibility levels. Phase III incorporates a process to address the economic viability of the proposed solutions. Also reported are the results of a survey on the relative importance of the flexibility types.
International Journal of Agile Management Systems – Emerald Publishing
Published: Dec 1, 2000
Keywords: Design; Agile production; Manufacturing
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