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Smoothly Pass the Parcel: Implementing the Theory of Swift, Even Flow

Garn, W (2015) Smoothly Pass the Parcel: Implementing the Theory of Swift, Even Flow International Journal of Operations and Production Management.

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Abstract

Purpose - This research examines the application of the Theory of Swift, Even Flow (TSEF) by a distribution company to improve the performance of its processes for parcels. TSEF was deployed by the company after experiencing improvement fatigue and diminishing returns from the implementation of lean. The fatigue was resolved through the deployment of swift, even flow, as revealed by relevant performance data. Design/Methodology/approach - The in-depth case study conducted semi-structured interviews and mapped the parcel processes before and after the changes. Findings - From this study we not only documented the value of TSEF but we also developed insights into the challenges that the firm encountered when utilising the concept. Importantly both strategic and operational issues need to be addressed in order to realise the benefits of the theory. Discrete event simulation was found to reflect theory of swift, even flow concepts. Practical Implications – This research demonstrates the practicality of deploying TESF as a mechanism for elevating lean to an enterprise level approach for firms struggling to move beyond the operational domain Originality/value – Researchers have called for a “grand narrative” that shifts mind-sets driven solely by lean efficiencies to a meta level that incorporates lean thinking with higher-level principles. TSEF has been shown to be a theory that can unify lean thinking with strategic vision so that businesses can envision what a process should be, across multiple sites, rather than fix what already exists.

Item Type: Article
Subjects : Management; Business
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Authors :
AuthorsEmailORCID
Garn, WUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date : 2015
Copyright Disclaimer : © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Uncontrolled Keywords : Lean, Service Operations, Theory of Swift Even Flow
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 03 Aug 2016 14:43
Last Modified : 03 Aug 2016 14:43
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/811446

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