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Title: Institutionalisation of ERP extension for collaborative engineering and logistics services in aircraft maintenance industry
Authors: Leung, Tim-shing
Degree: M.Phil.
Issue Date: 2007
Abstract: The aircraft maintenance and engineering (AME) companies have experienced a major change in the business environment over the last decade owing to increased operational constraints, tighter flight schedules and complex service provision network. The AME's found that an increased aircraft utilisation could affect the airliners' on-time performance (OTP) for revenue flights. In order to enhance competitiveness, AME companies have extended the supply chain boundaries, and employed Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to improve efficiency. Owing to various constraints, ERP benefits have not been fully employed, leaving a performance gap between the actual and the required level of OTP. This predicament gave rise to a research opportunity for maintenance process improvement. This industry problem was originated from a "process-system" mismatch within organisations (Gunasekaran, 2003), and it has become more apparent when outsource and in-source activities are entangled with ERP inter-connectivity issues. Bendoly (2003) proposed "ERP Extension" by connecting applicable technologies to match processes and systems in resolving some ERP progression problems as depicted by Gunasekaran (2003), Koh (2006), Markus (1983; 2006), Botta-Genoulaz (2003) and Osterle (2001). However, this concept has not been proven in the complex supply chain network (SCN), such as in the AME industry. In order to improve the effectiveness of the existing independent ERPs in the AMEs, it is proposed that aircraft maintenance data could be made available in certain time-critical processes by mobile tools on the spot of activities. Hence an industrial-based research was lunched for the benefit of engineering planners, maintenance frontline staff and reliability specialists in using timely information for logistics and process enhancement on unconnected ERPs. This is similar to assisting a group of actors on a stage to perform different roles and characters, but with different versions of scripts. However, this approach has generated many new issues such as players could not be aligned easily, what type of extended ERP applications and how they can be adopted. After a series of case studies and cross-referencing, Chung's Diamond Model (2005) was reinvigorated for theoretical support. Furthermore, the model's player management capacity was expanded to include competitor participation. Finally, the research result was expressed in an innovative task-route matrix supported by a 'Maintenance Theatre' concept created to foster player collaboration. Through the journey of aligning AME players to extend the ERP applications under a collaborative framework, I discovered a four-stage institutionalisation process to resolve emerging problems. This is by focusing on the following: a)Visualisation of the opportunity for AME collaboration during ERP extension, b)Mapping out the feasible paths of extended ERP collaboration; and c)Alignment of players' interest in SCN that could make or break the relationship. Having accomplished the above institutionalisation process, this research has closed a knowledge gap in the maintenance service player management arena, under the challenge of extended ERP applications.
Subjects: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations.
Aircraft industry -- Management.
Airplanes -- Maintenance and repair -- Economic aspects.
Business planning.
Business logistics.
Pages: xii, 104, 49 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm.
Appears in Collections:Thesis

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