Investigation in ICT Contributions to Collaborative Maturity in OEM Projects
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Shipbuilding projects take place in an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) project environment that produces a low volume of highly customizable products in a global supply chain. This network must collaborate efficiently to produce innovative products. As OEM companies operate more and more globally in increasingly competitive markets, collaboration is key to staying competitive. One way they can succeed at this is to invest in better operations and organization management (OOM) systems. However, the limited information on ICT contributions to collaboration in OEM projects makes it difficult to determine in which systems to invest. This research addresses the topic by performing an investigation into how ICT systems can support and enhance supply chain collaboration and ensure the application of best practice knowledge and workflow management in OEM projects. Three research questions are answered:1. What are the main challenges in knowledge and workflow management in project-based industry?2. Which operations & organizational management systems and alternative ICT-approaches can be used to cope with these challenges?3. How can ICT systems be leveraged in order to better support knowledge and workflow management in project-based industries? The research was conducted as a case study with a literature review on supply chain collaboration, knowledge- and workflow modeling and management, and OOM systems. A systems engineering methodology provided overall structure to the research design. The study revealed that the main challenges with knowledge and workflow management in project-based industry is fitting the management system to the organizational culture, making sure the system is dynamic enough to cope with change, and justify implementation of such technology. In order to cope with these challenges OOM systems such as ERP, PLM, EA, and AKM can be implemented. However, by themselves, none of the OOM systems presented in this thesis qualifies to provide a high level of collaborative maturity. A framework was developed to analyze and classify the collaborative maturity level of a software solution in an OEM project environment. By application of the framework an integration of OOM systems for cohesive collaboration has been identified. In addition a roadmap for how to mature an ICT system in order to enhance and increase the effectiveness of collaboration in OEM projects by combining ERP, PLM, EA, and AKM systems is presented. Here, the different strengths of each system are leveraged to gain cohesive collaboration, thus providing best practice support for knowledge and workflow management in a project-based industry. This knowledge lays the groundwork to better understand the complex challenges concerning ICT systems and collaborative maturity in OEM projects.