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Title: Rolling out lean production systems: a knowledge-based perspective
Authors: Secchi, Raffaele
Camuffo, Arnaldo
Issue Date: 2016
Publisher: Emerald
Bibliographic citation: Secchi Raffaele, Camuffo Arnaldo (2016), Rolling out lean production systems: a knowledge-based perspective. In: International journal of operations and production management, vol. 36, n. 1, Jan. 2016, p. 61-85. ISSN 0144-3577.
Abstract: Adopting a knowledge-based perspective, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the roll-out process of lean production systems and explores the dimensions that might enhance or hinder its performance. It develops a framework to understand and design lean roll-out processes, identifying the research dimensions/design variables to classify and interpret such processes. Design/methodology/approach – This exploratory multiple case study analyses seven lean roll-out processes in multinational companies’ plants. An original data set, developed on the basis of a purposely design research protocol, was built through two rounds of plant visits and structured interviews. The cross-case analysis compares and contrasts the lean roll-out processes according to the research dimensions constituting the framework. Findings – The effectiveness and the efficiency of the lean roll-out processes: first, negatively co-vary with the degree of lean knowledge codification; second, positively co-vary with the degree of autonomy of the plant; third, positively co-vary with the degree of contextual ambidexterity. Moreover, lean roll-out processes characterized by principles-based knowledge replication strategy, plant autonomy and contextual ambidexterity are comparatively more effective and efficient. Research limitations/implications – This is an exploratory qualitative study that develops propositions potentially testable in larger scale, more analytical research. Practical implications – This study provides a tentative roadmap to successfully approach the roll-out of lean production systems in complex organizations. Originality/value – This study challenges the current theory and practice which implicitly assumes that lean roll-outs take place linearly, cascading a set of predefined lean operations practices. Instead, the authors show that a less codified, more decentralized and contextually ambidextrous approach might be more effective.
Journal/Book: International journal of operations and production management
ISSN: 0144-3577
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