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The role of a manufacturing audit in crafting the production system

Rafael Menda (Johnson & Johnson, Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, USA)

International Journal of Operations & Production Management

ISSN: 0144-3577

Article publication date: 1 September 2004



Analyzing and changing important operations strategic dimensions to meet the requirements of the firm's business strategy is an essential part of an operations executive's role. Fulfilling this role effectively requires the use of tested and usable tools for systematically examining those strategic decision areas and designing a manufacturing system that supports the unique demands of the business. Manufacturing audit is one such tool that enables managers to achieve that strategic congruence. This paper describes how an operations management team in a consumer pharmaceuticals company used the manufacturing audit approach as a key element of a broader process of formulating such an operations strategy. Using action research methodology, the application demonstrates how the participating managers improved the tool in an iterative manner through a series of facilitated group discussions and reached a consensus. A critique of various aspects of the audit reveals the difficulties encountered during the process and how they were resolved. The paper also highlights the lessons learned, and offers recommendations on how this approach can be used effectively by other management teams.



Menda, R. (2004), "The role of a manufacturing audit in crafting the production system", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 24 No. 9, pp. 929-943.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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