Department Chair

James Mayrose, Ph.D., Chair and Associate Professor

Date of Award


Access Control

Open Access

Degree Name

Industrial Technology, M.S.


Technology Department


John J. Earshen, Ph.D., Associate Professor

Department Home page

First Reader

John J. Earshen, Ph.D., Associate Professor

Second Reader

Richard A. Stempniak, Ph.D., Associate Professor


Lean Material Strategy (Lean) has become a governing principle for many companies. These strategies help managers identify waste within the process, and once visible, drive it from the system. One of the principal objectives of this approach is to achieve greater manufacturing efficiency. It is current practice, at a publically held automotive corporation (Company X), to employ Lean in new program launches for its manufacturing sites. While Lean served as the theoretical foundation for design of new assembly systems at Company X sites, insufficient consideration was given to developing an integrated “big picture” solution to the implementation of these new assembly systems within the broader manufacturing system (i.e. global supply chain, quality, etc.). Additionally, implementation of lean creates entirely new workflow procedures that demand a shift in organizational culture throughout the company. Without considering the integration of Lean and its attendant organizational culture change, a balanced system was unachievable at Company X – this thwarted realization of improved manufacturing efficiencies. To address these issues, the investigator developed a research protocol aimed at proposing the successful integration of Lean Assembly Systems into the entire manufacturing system. Using existing performance data at Company X, and a thorough understanding of Lean, the investigator was able to devise an integrated system capable of integrating manufacturing schedules, optimizing manpower, meeting efficiency targets, and ultimately driving waste back to the suppliers. As an active member of the Assemble Systems management team at Company X, the investigator has developed an implementation plan to adopt this more integrated approach immediately.