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From IE to JIT to time-based competition

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Recent developments in global manufacturing suggest that the traditional industrial engineering approach for work improvement is off-target and ineffective. The experiences of many leading firms show that the task-oriented approach of industrial engineering (IE) misses major opportunities for process improvement. We maintain that the problem stems not from IE's original principles but from how it has evolved (or deviated) from them : the evolution of IE in support of mass production created a myopic, task focus that is inappropriate for time-based, flexible operating environments of today. Just-in-time (JIT) represents a radical departure from traditional IE practices and time-based competition represents further development along that path... We argue in this paper that these changes represent a departure from what has become standard IE practices and that these practices are obstacles to the quantum leaps in response time and quality necessary to compete in today's global markets

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