Requirements on manufacturing strategy frameworks for SMME
Paper in proceedings, 2012
Small and medium-sized enterprises are crucial for national finances and economic growth. For small and medium-sized manufacturing enterprises (SMME) it is essential for competiveness that manufacturing supports the overall company goals. Despite this, previous investigations show that it is mainly larger companies that are aware of the role of manufacturing for competitiveness and therefore formulates manufacturing strategies. The purpose of this paper is to increase the understanding about how manufacturing strategy formulation can be facilitated within SMME, and specifically on requirements that are raised on frameworks to support the work with manufacturing strategy processes. The presented results are based on five case studies, carried out in five different small and medium-sized units/companies. The result indicate that they on the one hand want the framework to be easy to understand and to use, but on the other hand it should be comprehensive, and it should provide recommendations for actions. Furthermore, a framework has to consider aspects related to the actual work procedure, the use of the framework, and with the outcome of the work. This analysis provides a valuable foundation for the on-going work of developing a framework for manufacturing strategy formulation adapted to the characteristics among SMME.