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Organization technologies, AMT and competent workers: Exploring relationships with manufacturing performance

Rene Cordero (School of Management, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Newark, New Jersey, USA)
Steven T. Walsh (Graduate School of Management, The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA)
Bruce A. Kirchhoff (School of Management, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Newark, New Jersey, USA)

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Article publication date: 13 March 2009

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which firms staffing with competent workers (CW), in addition to adopting organization technologies (OT) (which include total quality management and just‐in‐time techniques) and advanced manufacturing technologies (AMT) change manufacturing performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The literature is reviewed to hypothesize relationships. The data are obtained with a questionnaire from 89 manufacturing managers in the micro electro‐mechanical systems industry. Factor analysis of indicators of manufacturing performance reveals two broad dimensions: manufacturing effectiveness and manufacturing flexibility. To test the hypotheses, these dimensions of manufacturing performance are regressed on measures of OT, AMT, CW and their pair‐wise interactions in a hierarchical fashion. The analyses are then repeated for the indicators of the two dimensions of manufacturing performance.

Findings

Staffing with CW fully increases both manufacturing effectiveness and manufacturing flexibility. The adoption of AMT partially increases manufacturing effectiveness, and partially increases manufacturing flexibility in the presence of CW. The adoption of OT fully increases manufacturing effectiveness, but partially decreases manufacturing flexibility in the presence of CW.

Originality/value

The paper provides a valuable study of the extent to which firms adopting OT and AMT, and staffing with CW change two broad dimensions of manufacturing performance and their indicators through both additive and synergistic effects.

Keywords

Citation

Cordero, R., Walsh, S.T. and Kirchhoff, B.A. (2009), "Organization technologies, AMT and competent workers: Exploring relationships with manufacturing performance", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 20 No. 3, pp. 298-313. https://doi.org/10.1108/17410380910936765

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited