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Article
Publication date: 10 October 2016

V. Raja Sreedharan and R. Raju

The purpose of this paper is to review Lean Six Sigma (LSS) literature and report different definitions, demographics, methodologies and industries.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review Lean Six Sigma (LSS) literature and report different definitions, demographics, methodologies and industries.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper highlights various definitions by different researchers and practitioners. A total of 235 research papers has been reviewed for the LSS theme, research methodology adopted, type of industry, author profile, country of research and year of publication.

Findings

From the review, four significant LSS classifications were identified that deal with the spread of LSS in different industries followed by observation for classification.

Practical implications

LSS is a strategy for success, but it did not examine its presence in various Industries. From this paper, readers can understand the quantum of its spread before implementing LSS. For academicians, it will be a comprehensive list of papers for research.

Originality/value

This paper reviews 235 research papers for their year, author profile, research methodology and type of industry. Various characteristics of LSS definitions and their theme are also reviewed.

Details

International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, vol. 7 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-4166

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 25 July 2008

D.T. Pham, P.T.N. Pham and A. Thomas

The purpose of this paper is to propose a “Fit” manufacturing paradigm for industry so that manufacturing companies can become economically sustainable and can operate…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a “Fit” manufacturing paradigm for industry so that manufacturing companies can become economically sustainable and can operate effectively in a global competitive market. The proposed Fit paradigm is aimed at providing a new manufacturing management perspective to both academics and industrialists.

Design/methodology/approach

The Fit paradigm is developed and proposed as a new manufacturing management strategy towards creating economically sustainable manufacturing organisations. Fit is a theoretical development using the principles of existing manufacturing paradigms along with new and innovative management concepts to create a sustainable approach to manufacturing.

Findings

Manufacturing strategies such as lean and agility allow companies to deliver bottom‐line savings in production terms although their effectiveness depends upon the volume and demand profile of their products. The trend towards mass customisation requires companies to provide personalised products and services at mass production prices. This now places a further burden on companies and therefore a holistic manufacturing framework must be developed in order to ensure that the factory of the future is able to meet this new demand. This paper proposes a fit manufacturing paradigm which integrates the manufacturing efficiencies achieved through lean and agility with the need to break into new markets through effective marketing and product innovation strategies to achieve long term economic sustainability. The small scale application of the approach in a case company shows that the initial results to be positive when measured against a fit index which is developed within this paper.

Originality/value

The development of a fit paradigm aimed at tackling directly the issues of economic sustainability is proposed and is considered by the authors as one of a kind. Fit will also provide a framework for the implementation of sustainable manufacturing operations within organisations.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 19 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 April 2013

David Sanders and Alexander Gegov

This paper aims to review seven artificial intelligence tools that are useful in assembly automation: knowledge‐based systems, fuzzy logic, automatic knowledge…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to review seven artificial intelligence tools that are useful in assembly automation: knowledge‐based systems, fuzzy logic, automatic knowledge acquisition, neural networks, genetic algorithms, case‐based reasoning and ambient‐intelligence.

Design/methodology/approach

Each artificial intelligence tool is outlined, together with some examples of their use in assembly automation.

Findings

Artificial intelligence has produced a number of useful and powerful tools. This paper reviews some of those tools. Applications of these tools in assembly automation have become more widespread due to the power and affordability of present‐day computers.

Research limitations/implications

Many new assembly automation applications may emerge and greater use may be made of hybrid tools that combine the strengths of two or more of the tools reviewed in the paper. The tools and methods reviewed in this paper have minimal computation complexity and can be implemented on small assembly lines, single robots or systems with low‐capability microcontrollers.

Practical implications

It may take another decade for engineers to recognize the benefits given the current lack of familiarity and the technical barriers associated with using these tools and it may take a long time for direct digital manufacturing to be considered commonplace… but it is expanding. The appropriate deployment of the new AI tools will contribute to the creation of more competitive assembly automation systems.

Social implications

Other technological developments in AI that will impact on assembly automation include data mining, multi‐agent systems and distributed self‐organising systems.

Originality/value

The novel approaches proposed use ambient intelligence and the mixing of different AI tools in an effort to use the best of each technology. The concepts are generically applicable across all industrial assembly processes and this research is intended to prove that the concepts work in manufacturing.

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Article
Publication date: 2 May 2017

Fredrick Muyia Nafukho, Mary Alfred, Misha Chakraborty, Michelle Johnson and Catherine A. Cherrstrom

The primary purpose of this study was to predict transfer of learning to workplace among adult learners enrolled in a continuing professional education (CPE) training…

Abstract

Purpose

The primary purpose of this study was to predict transfer of learning to workplace among adult learners enrolled in a continuing professional education (CPE) training program, specifically training courses offered through face-to-face, blended and online instruction formats. The study examined the predictive capacity of trainee characteristics, training design and work environment on transfer of learning among the study respondents.

Design/methodology/approach

A cross-sectional online survey design was used to collect data from the study respondents, three months after CPE training. Two hundred ninety-seven trainees participated in this study. Data from 46 participants were incomplete and therefore excluded in the preliminary analysis, resulting in 251 valid responses and participants for the data analysis, 43 males (17.1 per cent), 201 females (80.1 per cent) and 7 (2.8 per cent) who did not indicate their gender. To answer the study’s research questions, factor analysis and multiple hierarchical regressions were performed.

Findings

The results of the study revealed training efficiency and relevance were critical in the transfer of learning among the study participants. The findings of the study showed combined training efficiency and training relevance enabled training participants to acquire knowledge and skills for application in the workplace and had significantly positive influence in transfer of learning. The work environment, measured by work variability (or flexibility) and work complexity, and the trainee motivation to participate, measured by learning-conducive workplace features, had a positive influence in transfer of learning.

Research limitations/implications

Because the majority of participants were females (80.1 per cent), this could be one of the limitations to this study. Research has identified that, because of the broad expectations based on sex and different family and occupational roles, men and women differ in their social network communication, participation in CPE, personality traits, gender-related occupational preferences, learning preference and methods of handling workplace conflict. The second limitation is related to the study design. The researchers did not have a control group because of practicality issues. This being a cross-sectional online survey study, all extraneous variables were not controlled such as in the case of a true randomized control study. This study is relying on the information obtained from a self-report training transfer instrument completed by the study participants. The accuracy of the obtained data is dependent on the honesty of the participants and their commitment in providing correct responses.

Originality/value

This study provides empirical evidence pertaining to the transfer of learning among adult learners engaged in a continuing professional development training program. The study examines factors related to training design, training delivery, trainee motivation and the workplace environment and how these factors determine transfer of learning among trainee respondents who participated in the study. The findings of the study have practical implications for the design and successful delivery of continuing professional training among adult learners. The study could be replicated at a national level and in international settings.

Details

European Journal of Training and Development, vol. 41 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-9012

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Rita Alvelos, Aristides I Ferreira and Reid Bates

The purpose of this study is to contribute to the understanding of factors that affect training effectiveness. According to the literature, social support, perceived…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to contribute to the understanding of factors that affect training effectiveness. According to the literature, social support, perceived content validity, transfer design, the motivation to improve work through learning and positive transfer, contribute to the effectiveness of training.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample used consisted of 202 employees with ages between 18 and 60 years, working for an insurance company where they had training for a period of three months.

Findings

The results show a relationship between perceived content validity and transfer design, as well as with the motivation to improve work through learning. A mediating role of social support was also evident in this relationship. Finally, the authors highlight the findings of the relationship between motivation to improve work through learning and positive transfer.

Originality/value

These findings contribute to the literature by demonstrating how the role of social support can increase training effectiveness in organizations.

Details

European Journal of Training and Development, vol. 39 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-9012

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2012

Duc T. Pham and Andrew J. Thomas

With the current global downturn, companies must develop new and innovative approaches to ensure that economic sustainability is achieved. The purpose of this paper is to…

Abstract

Purpose

With the current global downturn, companies must develop new and innovative approaches to ensure that economic sustainability is achieved. The purpose of this paper is to propose a Fit Manufacturing Framework (FMF), the adoption of which can help manufacturing companies to become economically sustainable and operate effectively in a global competitive market. This contribution extends the previous work by the authors and provides an evolution on the initial work through enhancing the development of Fit manufacture through developing a more robust framework and a more comprehensive functional testing of the framework.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed FMF provides a new manufacturing management perspective and a new manufacturing management strategy for creating economically sustainable manufacturing organisations. It builds upon the principles of existing manufacturing paradigms, along with innovative management concepts, to set up the conditions necessary for sustainability. A pilot application of the framework in three SMEs shows positive initial results when assessed against four Measures of Performance.

Findings

Manufacturing strategies such as Lean and Agility allow companies to deliver bottom‐line savings in production terms, although their effectiveness depends upon the volume and demand profile of their products. The trend towards mass customisation requires companies to provide personalised products and services at mass production prices. This now places a further burden on companies and therefore a holistic manufacturing framework must be developed in order to ensure that the factory of the future is able to meet this new demand. This paper proposes a Fit manufacturing paradigm which integrates the manufacturing efficiencies achieved through Lean and Agility with the need to break into new markets through effective marketing and product innovation strategies to achieve long term economic sustainability. The small‐scale application of the approach in a case company shows the initial results to be positive when measured against key MOPs developed within this paper.

Originality/value

The development of a Fit paradigm aimed at tackling directly the issues of economic sustainability is proposed and is considered by the authors as one of a kind. Fit will also provide a framework for the implementation of sustainable manufacturing operations within organisations.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 13 April 2015

Melvin Prince, David Burns, Xinyi Lu and Robert Winsor

– This paper aims to use goal-setting theory to explain the transfer of knowledge and skills between master of business administration (MBA) and the workplace.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to use goal-setting theory to explain the transfer of knowledge and skills between master of business administration (MBA) and the workplace.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were obtained by an online survey of MBA students enrolled in at four US graduate business schools. These were a public and private institution in the Northeast region, a private sectarian institution in the Midwest region and a private institution in the Pacific region. All students worked while attending the university. The sampling frame consisted of each school’s MBA enrollees. Questionnaires were distributed to a random cross-section of part-time students at each graduate school of business representative of returned by 144 students. The profiles of responders were consistent with parameters for the entire MBA student population.

Findings

The research shows that multiple goals of reciprocal knowledge and skills transfer may be in harmony and mutually reinforcing. In principle, each goal is more likely to be attained with greater economy of effort than might be surmised. Additionally, the same forces may act similarly to facilitate attainment of two well-integrated goals, in this case transfer between MBA studies and work, as well as between work and MBA studies.

Research limitations/implications

The present study involved participants from part-time public and private MBA granting institutions in the USA. The study tested and extended goal-setting theory and introduced the innovative concept of reciprocal transfer. Future studies should seek to generalize the findings to a broader population of part-time MBA students, especially from other nations. Despite its strengths, the findings of this study need to be interpreted in the perspective of some limitations. The current study did not measure transfer climates in either the organization or university settings. Transfer climates undoubtedly have an important bearing on transfer outcomes.

Practical implications

Review of the present study suggests that a positive MBA environment is needed to influence motivation to learn and perceptions of the MBA program’s utility, thereby promoting transfer of knowledge and skills to MBA studies from the workplace. A supportive work-to-MBA-studies transfer climate will lead to more active learning of course content that has greater relevance for achieving career goals. Potentially generalizable from the organizational transfer climate literature (Rouiller and Goldstein 1990; Rouiller and Goldstein 1993), positive transfer from work to MBA studies will occur when appropriate situational cues and consequences are present in the program.

Social implications

A constructive implication suggested by the findings of this study would be the intervention and transfer management by educators to structure and strengthen the university transfer climate of their part-time MBA programs. Traditionally, the concept of transfer climate has been primarily applied to employee workplace training activity and job performance. The university culture of the MBA student might emphasize and reward continuous learning from workplace experiences. Opportunities at the university should be provided for the exercise of newly acquired workplace skills that reinforce MBA learning experiences.

Originality/value

This is the first study that shows how learning goals and performance goals are integrated in the context of a new concept, i.e. reciprocal transfer of knowledge and skills between MBA and workplace settings. It also demonstrates, for the first time, the impact of learning and motivation for MBA studies and perceived utility of MBA program on the extent of transfer of learning and skills from the workplace to the university setting.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 2 March 2015

Abdul Rahim Zumrah and Stephen Boyle

The role of perceived organizational support (POS) and job satisfaction on the effectiveness of transfer of training in the workplace has begun to receive attention among…

Abstract

Purpose

The role of perceived organizational support (POS) and job satisfaction on the effectiveness of transfer of training in the workplace has begun to receive attention among recent studies. However, there is still limited understanding of how these factors may work together to affect the transfer of training. The purpose of this paper is to address this gap by exploring the relationship between POS, job satisfaction and transfer of training.

Design/methodology/approach

The data of this study have been collected from a group of employees, and their supervisors through survey. The data were analyzed using structural equation modeling.

Findings

The findings reveal that job satisfaction mediates the relationship between POS and transfer of training.

Originality/value

This study suggests that POS can improve employees’ job satisfaction, which in turn increase transfer of training in the workplace. The significant relationship between the factors (POS – job satisfaction – transfer of training) is an important finding that has not been empirically determined previously, particularly in the transfer of training literature. The findings show that job satisfaction plays an essential role as a mediator in the relationship between POS and transfer of training.

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Article
Publication date: 5 February 2018

Kueh Hua Ng and Rusli Ahmad

Substantially few or no known empirical studies have explicitly focused on the higher-order construct of motivation in human resource development (HRD), namely, motivation…

Abstract

Purpose

Substantially few or no known empirical studies have explicitly focused on the higher-order construct of motivation in human resource development (HRD), namely, motivation to improve work through learning (MTIWL) as a mediator linking personality traits and social support to training transfer. Hence, the purpose of this paper is to redress the inadequacy by exploring the role of MTIWL as a mediator on such relationships.

Design/methodology/approach

Consistent with positivism, quantitative data based on self-rating were collected from 131 trainees attending management training programs organized by a public sector training provider in Malaysia.

Findings

The findings indicate that personality traits (i.e. conscientiousness, extraversion, and agreeableness) and social support (i.e. perceived organizational support and peer support) influenced training transfer via the mediating role of MTIWL. Supervisor support, nonetheless, was not a significant predictor of training transfer through MTIWL.

Originality/value

This study focuses on a more holistic motivational construct than simple motivation in HRD. The focus on MTIWL extends the existing understanding of the underlying motivational influences that link dispositional and situational factors to training transfer in occupational settings.

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Article
Publication date: 26 March 2018

Talat Islam and Ishfaq Ahmed

This study aims to investigate the mechanism between perceived organizational support and transfer of training using self-efficacy and job satisfaction as mediating…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the mechanism between perceived organizational support and transfer of training using self-efficacy and job satisfaction as mediating variables. More specifically, self-efficacy is examined as a mediator between perceived organizational support and job satisfaction, whereas job satisfaction is examined as a mediator between perceived organizational support and transfer of training.

Design/methodology/approach

This quantitative study is based on data collected from 409 employees of the banking sector on a random basis.

Findings

Structural equation modeling analysis confirmed the mediating role of job satisfaction between perceived organizational support and transfer of training. In addition, self-efficacy was found to perform the mediating role between perceived organizational support and job satisfaction.

Research limitations/implications

The data for this study were collected at one point of time, and it has implications for organizations and employees.

Originality/value

This study highlights the emerging issue of transfer of training and gives a practical model to the organizations to strengthen their human resources. This study is perhaps the first attempt to empirically investigate the mediating role of self-efficacy and job satisfaction.

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