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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2021

Carina Söderlund and Magnus Hansson

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role and function of visuals, visual communication and information design as they relate to management control systems and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role and function of visuals, visual communication and information design as they relate to management control systems and visual management (VM) in lean-inspired organisations. This paper helps expand knowledge on how visual and design studies can contribute to research on VM as part of a management control system.

Design/methodology/approach

A study is outlined, which was conducted at a multinational manufacturing company to investigate employees’ perceptions and use of visual devices on the shop floor, including their related reactions and behaviour. The study is delimited to operation management, lean manufacturing and lean boards (i.e. daily management boards and performance measurement boards).

Findings

The findings point out the persuasive purpose of lean boards, as well as the metaphoric and persuasive functions of the visuals and information design in management control systems.

Originality/value

Visual research and design research are rare within studies of management control systems. There is a need to perform research that takes into account the role and function of visual communication and information design in VM. The proposed areas for future research can provide design principles, as well as insights into the complexity of visual communication and information design in VM and management control studies.

Details

International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-4166

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2017

Audrey Lynn Schultz

The purpose of this paper is to create a value-based facilities management (FM) workplace by integrating lean principles, lean concepts, and specifically visual management

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to create a value-based facilities management (FM) workplace by integrating lean principles, lean concepts, and specifically visual management technologies to improve efficiency, transparency, and value in the built environment.

Design/methodology/approach

The original research methodology used design science research framework with an action research (AR) approach. The chosen qualitative research methods included questionnaires, unstructured and semi-structured interviews, and participatory observation in action.

Findings

The facilities asset management department needs to align itself more strategically with organization leadership by understanding core business values, mission, and vision. It is essential they become a partner in creating a value-based contribution to the organizations bottom line and strategic plan. This can be established by embracing lean principles, concepts, and visual technologies, strategically linking the FM and asset management department to the organization holistically. The research acknowledged that a lean visual workplace management system could be introduced in facilities asset management with success. The findings suggest that change management should form part of the lean journey.

Research limitations/implications

The original research was limited in scope to one UK university estates and property services department’s lean journey and their third party outsourced FM service provider.

Originality/value

By using the visual workplace management system to integrate lean and visual management technologies in FM asset management systems value-based FM services and recognition from the C-suite will be achieved. Additionally, a new design science framework with an AR approach was developed as a research method

Details

Built Environment Project and Asset Management, vol. 7 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-124X

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Article
Publication date: 6 June 2016

Youness Eaidgah, Alireza Arab Maki, Kylie Kurczewski and Amir Abdekhodaee

The purpose of the paper is to study the interconnections between visual management, performance management and continuous improvement programmes and to suggest a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to study the interconnections between visual management, performance management and continuous improvement programmes and to suggest a practical framework to establish an effective visual management programme in association with performance management and continuous improvement systems. For the sake of simplicity, this paper refers to such a programme as integrated visual management (IVM) throughout this paper.

Design/methodology/approach

The following research included proposals and discussion, which were based on a case study which took place at a quality assurance (QA) department in PACCAR Australia, a global premium truck manufacturer, as well as authors’ own findings and experience, in addition to a literature-based review on visual management, performance management and continuous improvement. A systematic approach was followed to establish an effective IVM system. This paper is composed of two sections. Some of the most important literatures on visual management, performance management and continuous improvement are reviewed in the first section. Then the findings, as well as some other author findings, on why visual management works are summarised. The second section is dedicated to the case study.

Findings

Visual management can provide a simple and yet effective solution to enhance information flow in organisations. However, for visual management to yield its full benefit, it needs be part of a bigger plan. It has to be linked to a performance management programme, which provides input into visual management, and a continuous improvement initiative, which receives inputs from visual management. This paper proposes a practical framework to establish an IVM programme and provides a detailed description of its phases. The paper also presents the results achieved, during our case study, and views on the integration benefits, as well as on how to successfully implement an IVM programme. A systematic approach to establish an effective IVM system was followed. It laid a solid foundation to facilitate an effective flow of information in QA in its respective areas. This programme not only improved an understanding of the processes and raised awareness about the performance and associated issues, it also boosted transparency, discipline, shared ownership, team involvement and scientific mindset. It assisted in achieving significant and concrete process improvements. It helped in establishing a productive continuous improvement programme. It was observed that while visual management, performance management and team or company continuous improvement programmes each served a benefit individually, when they were linked together, as a whole, their synergy allowed for more significant achievements.

Research limitations/implications

The scope of this research is limited to use of visual management to manage performance and to lead continuous improvement initiatives. The research was performed in a manufacturing environment. Even though it is believed that the suggested framework for IVM and the findings are applicable to other business environments as well, further research in this direction is required. Also, the interconnection between visual management, continuous improvement and performance management based on a case study was investigated. More quantitative researches, on bigger scales, are required to better understand the mentioned interactions and to enhance our knowledge of these tools in a holistic manner.

Originality/value

The originality of the papers comes from its holistic approach to visual management, performance management and continuous improvement programmes and the suggested framework to establish an IVM programme.

Details

International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-4166

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2017

Algan Tezel and Zeeshan Aziz

The purpose of this paper is to explore the benefits of visual management (VM) systems in transportation construction projects in England.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the benefits of visual management (VM) systems in transportation construction projects in England.

Design/methodology/approach

Following a comprehensive literature review, the benefits of VM were investigated through action and case study research executed within two construction projects in England.

Findings

The main findings are: VM can contribute to increased self-management, better team coordination, better promises or an increasing plan percent complete, easier control for the management and improved workplace conditions in the transportation sector. It is important for the management to obtain the engagement of their workforce for VM through increased participation and show the actual benefits. However, managerial monitoring and control on the systems should not be underestimated.

Originality/value

The transportation sector in England has been systematically deploying Lean construction techniques in its operations for a while. One of those Lean techniques is a close-range visual communication strategy called VM. The literature on the VM implementation in construction is scarce and generally limited to the building construction context. This paper documents the benefits of VM systems for the transportation sector by using data captured through both qualitative and quantitative data collection methods. The paper also identifies a set of recommendations for similar research efforts in the transportation context in the future.

Details

Construction Innovation, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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Article
Publication date: 14 May 2018

Yvonne Eriksson and Anders Fundin

Strategic changes in an organization will face challenges not only related to the changes as such but also with regard to how the vision of the future is interpreted and…

Abstract

Purpose

Strategic changes in an organization will face challenges not only related to the changes as such but also with regard to how the vision of the future is interpreted and understood by the organization. Visual management is a field of research that could contribute to change management research as a means to facilitate management of the dynamics in a change process and to facilitate the process of communication. The purpose of this paper is to problematize episodic change processes with regard to communication and to contribute with a proposed model on how to facilitate dynamic strategic change management using visual management.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses an interdisciplinary approach by linking change management literature to visual communication to be used for visual management.

Findings

A proposed model presents how a dynamic episodic change process can be managed in terms of visual management, potential pitfalls to avoid, and what ambidextrous capabilities are needed throughout the complete episodic change.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed model is still yet theoretical, based on a literature review of dynamic change management and visual communication. Future research will validate the model in practice to confirm its robustness.

Practical implications

An implementation of visual management in Kotter’s (1995) eight steps on how to strategically manage change in combination with theories on ambidexterity and episodic change is suggested.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to how visual management can support change management by combining visual communication and change management.

Details

Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 31 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0953-4814

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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2019

Jukka Majava, Harri Haapasalo and Kirsi Aaltonen

The “big room” concept and lean philosophy have become increasingly popular in the construction industry. Visual control is a central part of lean philosophy and the big…

Abstract

Purpose

The “big room” concept and lean philosophy have become increasingly popular in the construction industry. Visual control is a central part of lean philosophy and the big room concept; its aim is to improve information flow, joint problem-solving and real-time decision-making. Visual control facilitates effective project management by providing information on what work is performed and why, customer requirements, deadlines, work status and potential problems. This study aims to explore how visualisation supports project management and control in a big room and the factors that facilitate good visual control.

Design/methodology/approach

This research is based on the case study method, and the objective is to elaborate the current understanding of factors that affect visual control. The study includes a literature review and an empirical study of a large construction project.

Findings

The results indicate that many factors facilitate visual control. Despite the importance of facilities and tools, communication and teamwork are identified as the key factors. On a broader level, the results indicate a need for a holistic approach in developing visual management strategies and practices in the construction industry and in complex projects in particular.

Research limitations/implications

A single case may not be able to offer a generalised picture of this complex topic. However, the study provides novel insights for practitioners and researchers interested in the development of visual control and big rooms. Future research topics are also proposed.

Originality/value

While previous studies have identified many elements of successful big room implementation – including integration and early involvement, information sharing, tools and facilities – this study focusses specifically on the factors that facilitate visual control.

Details

Construction Innovation , vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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Article
Publication date: 4 July 2016

Algan Tezel, Lauri Koskela and Patricia Tzortzopoulos

The purpose of this paper is to holistically discuss, explore and synthesise the key literature on visual management (VM), an important, yet highly fragmented subject that…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to holistically discuss, explore and synthesise the key literature on visual management (VM), an important, yet highly fragmented subject that is frequently referred in lean production accounts.

Design/methodology/approach

An extensive literature review was conducted to classify the current literature, to explore the different aspects and limitations of the current discussions on the subject, to clarify in what ways VM benefits manifest themselves in a workplace and to identify the future research focus.

Findings

VM is an important close-range communication strategy based on cognitively effective information conveyance. This strategy has been frequently discussed in the production management literature. However, the literature is fragmented as to the roles of VM in a production setting; the body of literature lacks integrated focus and cohesion with an abundance of related terminology from scholarly works and consultant books; a practical VM tools taxonomy and a visual workplace implementation framework were presented; there is poor clarity with regards to the functions (benefits) that VM may provide within organisations, nine conceptual VM functions were proposed; a wide array of future research directions related to VM was identified.

Originality/value

This paper synthesises the key literature related to VM, providing a conceptual picture of the current knowledge.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 27 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

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Book part
Publication date: 10 April 2019

Eric Knight and Sotirios Paroutis

Visuals are a crucial part of strategizing, whether it be through the use of body gesture, the crafting of strategy presentations, or the use of new media technologies…

Abstract

Visuals are a crucial part of strategizing, whether it be through the use of body gesture, the crafting of strategy presentations, or the use of new media technologies from videoconferencing through to data visualization. Yet studying these aspects of the strategy process is methodologically challenging and requires careful attention to how the data is collected and what questions the data analysis can address. In this chapter, we lay out choices for scholars and the opportunities these afford to new and promising agendas in strategy and management research.

Details

Standing on the Shoulders of Giants
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-336-0

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Article
Publication date: 4 May 2012

Jane Davison, Christine McLean and Samantha Warren

The purpose of this paper is to discuss how “the visual” might be conceptualised more broadly as a useful development of qualitative methodologies for organizational…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss how “the visual” might be conceptualised more broadly as a useful development of qualitative methodologies for organizational research. The paper introduces the articles that form the basis of this special issue of QROM, including a review of related studies that discuss the analysis of organizational visuals, as well as extant literature that develops a methodological agenda for visual organizational researchers.

Design/methodology/approach

The Guest Editors’ conceptual arguments are advanced through a literature review approach.

Findings

The Guest Editors conclude that studying “the visual” holds great potential for qualitative organizational researchers and show how this field is fast developing around a number of interesting image‐based issues in organizational life.

Research limitations/implications

A future research agenda is articulated and the special issue that this paper introduces is intended to serve as a “showcase” and inspiration for qualitative researchers in organizations and management studies.

Originality/value

This issue of QROM is the first collection of visual research articles addressing business and management research. The Guest Editors’ introduction to it seeks to frame its contents in contemporary interdisciplinary debates drawn from the wider social sciences and the arts.

Details

Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5648

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Article
Publication date: 29 March 2011

Roland H. Bartholmé and T.C. Melewar

Despite the significance of sound, hitherto the auditory dimension has been widely ignored with regard to corporate identity management and corporate communication. This…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite the significance of sound, hitherto the auditory dimension has been widely ignored with regard to corporate identity management and corporate communication. This paper aims to expand the domains of corporate identity and corporate communication by focusing on the auditory dimension as a component of company‐controlled communication.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on an extensive review of corporate identity and corporate communication literature, a set of hypotheses is proposed that reflect antecedents of corporate auditory identity management.

Findings

The paper not only illustrates the importance of the auditory dimension as part of corporate identity management, it also provides initial suggestions of antecedent factors that are expected to determine the utilisation of sound on a corporate level.

Originality/value

The presented discussion about the role of auditory identity vis‐à‐vis corporate identity management provides initial guidance for managers when considering the auditory dimension as a potential ingredient of their communication tool kit. Moreover, this paper advances existing knowledge by providing initial insight into the relationship between domains such as auditory identity and corporate identity, visual identity and corporate communication.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

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