The paradigm shift toward Industry 4.0 is facilitating human capability, and at the center of the research are the workers—Operator 4.0—and their knowledge. For example, new advances in augmented reality and human–machine interfaces have facilitated the transfer of knowledge, creating an increasing need for labor flexibility. Such flexibility represents a managerial tool for achieving volume and mix flexibility and a strategic means of facing the uncertainty of markets and growing global competition. To cope with these phenomena, which are even more challenging in high-variety, low-volume contexts, production planning and control help companies set reliable due dates and shorten lead times. However, integrating labor flexibility into the most consolidated production planning and control mechanism for a high-variety, low-volume context—workload control—has been quite overlooked, even though the benefits have been largely demonstrated. This paper presents a mathematical model of workload control that integrates labor flexibility into the order review and release phase and simulates the impact on performance. The main results show that worker transfers occur when they are most needed and are minimized compared to when labor flexibility is at a lower level of control—shop-floor level—thus reducing lead time.

Labor flexibility integration in workload control in Industry 4.0 era

Federica Costa;Portioli Staudacher A.
2021-01-01

Abstract

The paradigm shift toward Industry 4.0 is facilitating human capability, and at the center of the research are the workers—Operator 4.0—and their knowledge. For example, new advances in augmented reality and human–machine interfaces have facilitated the transfer of knowledge, creating an increasing need for labor flexibility. Such flexibility represents a managerial tool for achieving volume and mix flexibility and a strategic means of facing the uncertainty of markets and growing global competition. To cope with these phenomena, which are even more challenging in high-variety, low-volume contexts, production planning and control help companies set reliable due dates and shorten lead times. However, integrating labor flexibility into the most consolidated production planning and control mechanism for a high-variety, low-volume context—workload control—has been quite overlooked, even though the benefits have been largely demonstrated. This paper presents a mathematical model of workload control that integrates labor flexibility into the order review and release phase and simulates the impact on performance. The main results show that worker transfers occur when they are most needed and are minimized compared to when labor flexibility is at a lower level of control—shop-floor level—thus reducing lead time.
2021
Human factors
Industry 4.0
Labor flexibility
Output control
Production planning
Workload control
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1207676
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