Title: Production planning optimisation and challenges in steel production: SSAB process review

Authors: Ville Isoherranen; Pekka Kess

Addresses: Oulu Southern Institute, University of Oulu, Pajatie 5, FI-85500 Nivala, Finland ' Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4610, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland

Abstract: This research investigates the production planning challenges in steel production. The strategy for steel manufacturing by the case company has changed in response to the pressure of the global markets. The original strategy resulted mostly in a push type of production planning that took the customer's orders into account at a certain point in the production line. Currently, the company is driven by customer's demand, which has resulted in more dynamics and larger variations in the production runs. The theory is built upon operations management, with a focus on production planning. The results indicate that the special nature of the production planning environment, which includes multiple variable process components in steel manufacturing, therefore contributes to the challenges in achieving a balanced production flow. The study evaluates the reasons for production scheduling challenges and examines the overall flow of steel production from an operation's optimisation point of view. This study brings forward the new data on measurement done in one critical production phase of steel production, thus giving example on variation at the single-process phase yielding to total variation of the system.

Keywords: continuous improvement; operations management; production planning; SSAB; steel production; steel manufacturing; production scheduling; case study.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMOM.2016.081342

International Journal of Modelling in Operations Management, 2016 Vol.6 No.1/2, pp.19 - 32

Received: 29 Feb 2016
Accepted: 15 Apr 2016

Published online: 05 Jan 2017 *

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