Title: Mass customisation in the woodworking industry – a simulation study for the parquet flooring industry

Authors: Hans Hauslmayer, Manfred Gronalt

Addresses: BOKU, Department of Economics and Social Sciences, Institute of Production and Logistics, University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna, Feistmantelstr.4, A-1180 Vienna, Austria. ' BOKU, Department of Economics and Social Sciences, Institute of Production and Logistics, University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna, Feistmantelstr.4, A-1180 Vienna, Austria

Abstract: We propose new ideas of applying mass customisation concepts to the production of wooden floorings, especially for the parquet industry. Owing to market requirements, this industry is obliged to observe special quality standards during production. Mass customising parquet flooring could open up new business opportunities for the industry. In order to offer customers the possibility of individually composed floors, several types of customised modules, instead of the currently produced floorboards, can be manufactured. Our research explores these new production concepts in a case study approach with an Austrian manufacturer of parquet flooring, using simulation as a method to test new production environments and different product/order mixes. We analyse several possible product-variety/customer-order mixes and their distinctive production outcomes when producing different customised modules of floorboards. These results are then compared to the status quo of parquet manufacturing at a case study company. We show how reconfigured production processes affect storage levels of semifinished products, service rates and, thus, customer satisfaction.

Keywords: mass customisation; decoupling point; parquet industry; process redesign; product configurator; radio frequency identification; RFID; supply chain management; SCM; woodworking industry; simulation; parquet flooring; wooden floorings; Austria; production reconfiguration.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMASSC.2008.017139

International Journal of Mass Customisation, 2008 Vol.2 No.3/4, pp.179 - 199

Published online: 15 Feb 2008 *

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