Defense LMS project Aksana Kharamava

Aksana Kharamava will defend her LMS project “The design of performance management system for Jan de Rijk” in Pavillion K.10 on Thursday 27 november 2014. The public part of the defense starts at 9:30. The abstract below summarizes the project.

Abstract
Being a state-of-the-art company Jan de Rijk (JdR) wants to have reliable information about its performance in order to improve current business processes and to support decision making. To achieve this, the company is resorting to performance measures to help assess its performance and drive it to success. As the performance measures, the company wants to design Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). The intention of the undertaken LMS design project “The design of a performance management system” is to design the KPIs that will shed a light on the company’s performance and to design Information System (IS) architecture supporting these KPIs. With this purpose the project is split in two main phases.

The first phase is devoted to KPI design. During the first phase we investigate three different approaches to designing KPIs. We analyze these approaches, consider their pros and cons, and ponder the feasibility of each approach during the course of the investigation. The first approach originates from the strategic alignment pyramid proposed by Bauer. The original Bauer’s pyramid undergoes some modification in our work but retains the idea of extraction KPIs from the strategic drivers of a company. Also this approach applies a Balanced Scorecard to structure KPIs among four different perspectives. The second approach considers splitting the transportation process in logistics building blocks and applies the KPIs known in literature, as well as used by other logistics companies, to these blocks. Evaluating the first approach as more efficient we decide to apply it in the company.

Since the deployment of the approach is time consuming and requires more time than the project can afford, we make some assumptions to simplify the approach. We assign a new name to the modernized approach and apply it as a design approach at the company. The main principle of this design approach lies in exploiting a simplified version of the pyramid of the first approach and a concept of four foci perspectives of the Balanced Scorecard. The implementation of the approach fully depends on the information taken from the company; hence, we develop a stepwise procedure for collecting structural and valuable information. This procedure includes stakeholder analysis, stepwise interviewing process, a range of workshops and final agreement on designed KPIs.

The second phase of the project is devoted to the implementation of the designed KPIs in JdR corporate systems. The company wants to apply to a central data warehouse (DW) for integrating the data needed for the KPIs. The central DW is supposed to facilitate the process of manual collecting information from different systems by providing data integration and processing. For this reason during the second phase of the project we design the IS architecture that explains each KPI in terms of data model diagrams. To perform an architecture design process we traverse a design space and consider the architecture at different aggregation levels that give a comprehensive view of the IS architecture.

For the IS architecture design we propose two alternatives. The first alternative implements the KPIs inside current IS architecture without its re-structuring. Deployment of this IS architecture design does not require much effort from the company. In the second alternative we consider business processes of the company and their implementation in IT environment, where we are trying to find a better match between business and IS architecture. We also take into consideration data quality issues and issues hampering the efficiency of internal processes. Our IS architecture design for this alternative is aimed at providing a better fit between company’s business and software. Implementation of the second alternative may require substantial cost and effort, therefore, it may be seen as unfeasible by the company; however, even implementation of some minor ideas from this design is not so cumbersome and will have immediate positive effect for the company.

Paper discussion meeting on ICT for Logistics and Freight Transportation

Monday, Nov 10, 12:30-13:30h in Pav. K16, Remco Dijkman will present the paper by Perego et al. ”ICT for logistics and freight transportation: a literature review and research agenda”, International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 41 Iss 5 pp. 457 – 483, 2011; see below for the abstract.

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Abstract
Purpose
– The purpose of this paper is to classify research on information and communication technology (ICT) for logistics and freight transportation on the basis of the main themes and methods and proposes directions for future research.

Design/methodology/approach
– The review is based on 44 papers published from 1994 to 2009 in international peer‐reviewed journals. The academic papers are analysed and classified according to the research methodology adopted and the themes addressed.

Findings
– While there are many contributions taking the “public transportation” perspective (i.e. the viewpoint of public stakeholders), papers focussing on the “private transportation” perspective (i.e. the viewpoint of the private companies offering logistics and transportation services) are fewer and relatively more recent. Additionally, even though in recent years researchers have also started to examine the decision‐making process of ICT adoption, many themes are under‐represented in literature, such as the subject of integration among different application types, empirical research on ICT adoption and the role of technology providers in the adoption process. As far as the methodology is concerned, the review revealed that many of the papers examined are either conceptual papers or empirical studies (i.e. mostly based on surveys, or else on case studies or interviews), while simulation and modelling are rarely present.

Research limitations/implications
– While efforts were made to be all‐inclusive, significant research efforts may have been inadvertently omitted. However, the authors believe that this review is an accurate representation of the body of research on ICT for logistics and transportation companies published during the specified timeframe, and feel that confidence may be placed on the resulting assessments.

Originality/value
– The paper offers a guide for the review of previous research on this topic and identifies the most important issues that need to be addressed in future research.