Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 222222
Loughborough University

Centre for Innovative and Collaborative Construction Engineering

2013


Dr Anoud Bani-Hani

Thesis

ERP system implementation in UK Joinery SMEs

Project Title

ERP System Implementation in UK Joinery SME's

Company

JCK Joinery

Supervisors

Academic:
Professor Chris Hinde
Dr Tom Jackson

Industrial:
Anthony Kellet
Ruth Jack

Director of Research:
Professor Stephen Ison

Research Period

2009 - 2013

 

 

 

ERP System Implementation in UK Joinery SME's

Aims and Research Questions

The aim of this research is to understand how information and knowledge management can be an effective tool in a SME. In particular how an ERP system can enhance access to information and knowledge, what training is required for the workforce given their initial skills.

The primary focus is to be on a Joinery manufacturer based in Leicester who supplies doors which are “secured by design” to the construction industry.

 Research Questions:

1) What research model can be used?

2) What are the flexibilities in SME manufacturers?

3) How is knowledge managed in manual based systems?

4) What enhancements can be made by using an ERP system?

5) What training and documentation is necessary to maximise the benefit to the company in a cost effective way?


Background

Mass production is used by most of the large manufacturers to minimize cost and maximize profit. The drawback is limited product range. However, technologies like fast prototyping have reduced the development cost and have sped up the new product development processes. That enables manufacturers to provide a larger range of products in a same period of time. However, the global market environment coupled with the fact that all manufacturers are cost and profit driven means that a minimum production quantity remains necessary to make the product viable. Even though more and more large manufacturers are working hard at meeting individual customer’s needs that comes at a price. Due to the limited market requirement the number of the special products manufactured is not big enough to spread the cost of development. As a result, big manufacturers are less able and less likely to provide a large variety of products to meet all the market needs. That leaves space for flexible SMEs.

The nature of an SME provides the flexibility and the ability to customize products at a relatively low cost. Compared to big manufacturers SME manufactures have smaller overheads to cover and less staff to communicate which means there is potentially less cost (time, money, labour etc.) involved in changes; however this is spread over a smaller product volume. However as there tends to be less investment in a high volume process it can cost less to manoeuvre the business, SMEs tend to be more flexible than larger organizations.

 However, organizations not only need to be able to adapt quickly, but also need to obtain stable processes in order to be efficient. Many of these companies rely on extensive use of IT, often by installing general Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems. While modern information systems like ERP/MRP systems provide stable processes the SME needs, the close management environment in SMEs allows a much freer flow of knowledge and information through the enterprise potentially allowing tighter control over the business procedures. The information will generally be held by various specialist people and could well disappear when that person leaves the company.  This is especially true when there is only one person in a particular role.

Methodology

This research will first of all analyse and evaluate existing models and look at new approaches by conducting a literature review.

The questions will be centred around the ownership and use of knowledge within the enterprise and the changes required to enhance knowledge capture, validation and transfer both and comparing the situation before and after the enhanced knowledge capture system.

A previous KTP project installed an ERP system, however there is a shortage of documentation and training materials and knowledge of the ERP is limited to a few people in the company.

Thomas W. Jackson, Sara Tedmori, Chris J. Hinde, Anoud I. Bani-Hani, “The Boundaries of Natural Language Processing Techniques in Extracting Knowledge from Email”, Journal of Emerging Technologies in Web Intelligence, Vol 4, No 2 (2012), 119-127, May 2012 doi:10.4304/jetwi.4.2.119-127.

Chris J. Hinde, Anoud I. Bani-Hani, Thomas W. Jackson, Yen P. Cheung, “Evolving Polynomials of the Inputs for Decision Tree Building”, Journal of Emerging Technologies in Web Intelligence, Vol 4, No 2 (2012), 198-203, May 2012, doi:10.4304/jetwi.4.2.198-203.

Bani-Hani, A.I., Jackson, T.W. and Hinde, C.J., ''Barriers to Knowledge Management in Small Low Tech Enterprises'', Software Quality Management XVIII, Dawson, R., Ross M. and Staples G., Southampton Solent University, Southampton, Software Quality Management XVIII, BCS London, April 2010, pp 41-52, ISBN: 978-0-9557300-8-5.

Bani-Hani, A.I., Jackson, T.W. and Hinde, C.J., ''Knowledge Validation in SMES'', Proceedings of KMIS 2010, Filipe, J. & Kacprzyk, J., SciTePress, KMIS 2010, Valencia, Spain, October 2010, pp.354-357, ISBN:978-989-8425-30-0.

Bani-Hani, A.I., Jackson, T.W. and Hinde, C.J., ''Knowledge Management, Sharing and ERP Systems in a Small Company'', Proceedings of International Conference on Information & Communication Systems, Wail Mardini, Faculty of Computer & Information Technology, Jordan University of Science & Technology, International Conference on Information & Communication Systems, Irbid, Jordan, June 2011, pp.24-27, ISBN:978-1-4507-8208-1.

Hinde, C.J., Jackson, T.W., Cheung, Y.P. and Bani-Hani, A.I., ''Evolving the input space for decision tree building'', Proceedings of International Conference on Information & Communications Systems, Wail Mardini, Faculty of Computer & Information Technology Jordan University of Science & Technology, International Conference on Information & Communication Systems 2011, Irbid, Jordan, May 2011, pp.48-52, ISBN:978-1-4507-8208-1.

Jackson, T.W., Tedmori, S., Hinde, C.J. and Bani-Hani, A.I., ''Review of Knowledge Extraction from Email: The Boundaries of Natural Language Processing Techniques'', Proceedings of International Conference on Information & Communication Systems, Wail Mardini, Faculty of Computer & Information Technology, Jordan University of Science & Technology, International Conference on Information & Communication Systems, Irbid, Jordan, June 2011, pp.61-66, ISBN:978-1-4507-8208-1.

Bani-Hani, A.I., Jackson, T.W. and Hinde, C.J., '' Economic Benefits of an ERP System to a Low Tech SME”, Proceedings of KMIS 2012, Filipe, J. & Kacprzyk, J., SciTePress, KMIS 2012, Barcelona, Spain, October 2012, pp.285-2897, ISBN: 978-989-8565-31.

 

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Loughborough University
Leicestershire
LE11 3TU

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