Project: Performance measurements in the semi-process industry

The Information Systems group is often contacted by industrial organizations with assignments that could lead to student projects at various levels (master thesis project, bachelor completion project, etc.) Through this website we make these topics available to our students. In this post, we announce one such project, involving company Marel.

Performance measurements in the semi-process industry

The organization

Marel is an international supplier of advanced systems for the food processing industry. With around 3700 employees worldwide, Marel focuses on the segments of Poultry Processing, Further Processing, Meat and Fish. At its modern plant in Boxmeer, the operating company Marel Stork Poultry Processing B.V. focuses on the design, production and installation of production systems for the poultry processing industry. As the world market leader, the organization is constantly looking for opportunities to increase the productivity of its customers, within the bounds of quality and innovation. In addition to offices in Boxmeer (NL), Dongen (NL) and Gainesville (Georgia, USA), the organization has regional offices in a large number of countries.

Master Thesis assignment

The highly automated production lines of modern poultry processors process 13.500 broilers per hour. Each broiler has its own quality specifications and unique weight, which determines its destination and potential value. The destination of a broiler can end up in several different articles; a modern retail plant offers a variety of more than 500 product articles.  In order to make optimal use of the potential value of each individual broiler an information system is required. A lot of attention is paid to animal welfare, food safety, quality, full traceability, water and energy consumption. The aim is to add value to poultry as effectively as possible. The overall performance of a poultry processor is depending on a lot of factors, one of the indirect factors is production planning. Production planning on a daily level is a real challenge in the poultry processing industry. The uncertainty of the demand on one side and the dynamics of the raw material supply on the other side ask for planning skills of the processor. A lot of data and an information system are used to control the production. The exact impact of planning and scheduling is difficult to determine, but enhancements of the planning performance gains big advantages. Innova is the provided information system by Marel to support planners. For now we have an interesting Master Thesis assignment for an entrepreneurial student. In order to improve the planning performance on the long term, initially the performance should be measured in order to quantify possible improvements. The assignment is to set up a method to measure the production planning performance of a retail poultry processor. The business process of production planning is known and can be used as a starting point. Determining (key) performance indicators and an overview of required vs. redundant (available) data are the most obvious deliverables.

Contact information: Marel, via Rik Eshuis, or Irene Vanderfeesten.

Colloquium IE&IS/IS – W&I/IS Dec 5, 2014

Hajo Reijers

Event Details

Process Tales

There are many ways to describe processes, even business processes.

And where there is variety, there is dissent. Adherents to one particular modeling paradigm are not holding back in their scorn on the tastes and preferences of other denominations.

At this point, I do not expect a grand unification of opinions to take place anytime soon (although it’s perfectly clear that Petri nets are everyone’s best choice, of course). Perhaps a more productive view on this matter is to accept the co-existence of various modeling paradigms, while trying to understand how they can be used in harmony, either as alternative or complementary representations.

I will give two illustrations of current research that I am conducting with various colleagues that embraces this position: (1) work on hybrid process models, and (2) text-process model comparisons. Since it is also “Sinterklaasavond”, I will keep it short and sweet.

After this talk a drink will take place in the PVOC.

New Employee Lonneke Vermeulen

LVI studied Industrial Engineering (bachelor) and Operations, Management and Logistics (master) at the Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands. In 2013 I graduated on my research towards ‘A process modelling method for Care Pathways’, which was conducted in participation with the Heart centre of the Catharina Hospital Eindhoven and supervised by Uzay Kaymak, Pieter van Gorp, Hui Yan and Erik Korsten. Since then I’ve been working on the development of the Clinical Decision Support System Tracebook, developed within the Brainbridge project of Shan Nan, from within the Catharina hospital. For the upcoming months I will continue my work on the Tracebook system and clinical trials, as well as write a paper of my master thesis research and preparing a conference on Fuzzy sets.

Preparations for GameBus are heating up!

While work on the GameBus project will officially start in January 2015, we are already making various preparations.  The most important preparation is the recruiting of two new group members.  One group member has been selected from the User System Interaction pool of PDEng trainees.  This member will focus on the end user experience as well as on the business model aspects of GameBus.  A second PDEng trainee was selected from the Software Technology pool.  This member will focus on the integration of game components on the bus.

Besides PDEng projects, we have defined two master thesis projects on GameBus.  One student will focus on GameBus business model aspects as part of a graduation in Innovation Management.  A second student will focus on GameBus backend aspects as part of a graduation in Business Information Systems.

A GameBus kick-off meeting will be organized as a side activity of the EIT ICT Labs Health and Wellbeing End-of-Year Event 2014.  In this way, we involve also our Italian partners in the preparations such that in January 2015 we can take a flying start!

Stay tuned…