Autosystems: The Business Value of a Successful IT System for a Small Manufacturer. Foundations of Information Systems in Business
This paper explores the real intern state of Autosystems, a manufacturing company, who included the design process into the company over time, which went through a transformation and is now looking for a future state of improvements and the usage of new software. The paper is based on the article which describes the company´s changes and which is contained in the first chapter of Foundations of Information Systems in Business; it shows the process by which Autosystems went through to reach the actual state. The paper also includes personal opinions as the response of analytic questions for the proper analysis of the case. Autosystems: The Business Value of a Successful IT System for a Small Manufacturer. Autosystems is an automotive company who is charge of lighting designer and manufacturing. It was established in 1986 and is located in Ontario; is the supplier for important companies as General Motors, Chrysler, Ford, Visteon, Harley-Davidson and others. In 1996, Autosystems did its first design and ventured to launch its design center, this made numerous customers to be more interested in Autosystems and the company grew. While trying to manage the floor shop manufacturing process, it decided to install software called TRANS4M, with which the process could be controlled and could replace all the paper forms that had to be filled manually. After seeing the software as functional, Autosystems could realize that the software did not applied to the shop floor processes; it could not incorporate information written on shop documents into the manufacturing system or obtain timely information without risks and if this was correctly obtained it cost a lot of effort giving as consequence a lack of information and the status of not being worthwhile. Based on that and after doing a deep analysis with questions response and past situations consideration, Autosystems decided to install ActivEntry, the shop floor reporting module of TRANS4M. ActivEntry was considered to be active among TRANS4M so all changes were considered and improved. The extension of first-though program (ActivEntry) gave, to the company, a wider look and availability to cover unattended issues; the company now could access to the information of scrap, costs and efficiencies. “Entering timely, accurate information into the system from the shop floor allows Autosystems to plan more efficiently, make production changes to avoid labor or scrap problems, and discuss this issues with production employees while they are still current and meaningful” (Foundations of Information Systems in Business, p.26). About the benefices obtained the most important are the avoidance of scrap and the efficiency, because it means production employees are being more attentive to the products than they make. Sometimes efficiency is not worth it if the product is created or assembled in the wrong manner; if the attention to the product is the convenient, the scrap can be eliminated and in consequence (in a near or distant future) the effectively will increase and the production will grow as well; as ActivEntry acted in Autosystems. Another benefit obtained is that managers are able to see everything in the shop floor making supervising easier and giving them the proper information so they can shear the shop floor processes progress day by day; this also makes usable standardized work and other lean tools as takt time or Value Stream Map. Managers also obtained another benefit, the Yvonne Millette’s analysis, made her realize the amount of paperwork used before ActivEntry´s implementation and now as the three plants of the company standardized the usage of the software, managers can transfer from one place to another without information misunderstandings or training needed. Several changes have been noticed...
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