Developing A Process Innovation Work Process: The Lkab Experience
It goes without saying that most companies today need a product innovation work process. The importance of process innovation in many sectors of the process industries should, however, make the development of a process innovation work process a growing concern in many process-based companies. This case study describes the development of such a work process at LKAB, a producer of high-quality iron ore pellets mainly for the European steel industry. Starting with a previously published conceptual model of the work process from a research project in other process industries, the development work is initially introduced in detail. The complete work process is then presented together with a cross-functional process map, checklists and a supplementary process description. The development of the work processes was a combination of a recording of LKAB's best practices coupled with the use of externally published research results and information on work process development. Finally, experience from the development and organisational implementation is discussed. It is the opinion of the project group that if properly applied, this work process will give structure, methodological guidance and efficiency in process innovation. But reaping those rewards will require persistence and discipline at all levels of the company. The purpose of this article is to provide theoretical insight and practical guidance on how to develop an innovation work process in the process industries, specifically, a process innovation work process. The successful development of this work process was considered of such importance to LKAB technology and business development that it resulted in an overall top management initiative to develop and improve all company innovation work processes, with a view to improving innovation output, project management efficiency and organisational learning.
Volume (Year): 14 (2010)
Issue (Month): 02 ()
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