Communications of the IIMA


Food manufacturers have a compelling requirement to address their information management needs in relation to the management of variation in their supply chain and subsequent production processes. However, many organisational information systems are not explicitly designed to address variation and uncertainty. The action research project outlined in this paper addresses a gap in the information management literature by showing how visualisation of information aided the efficacy of perishable goods production in a small food manufacturer. A user-centred, agile approach enabled the design and implementation of an integrated, dynamic visual production management system. Underpinned by a new manufacturing strategy, this system provided an information bridge between members of the organisation and in so doing facilitated improved communication and decision making across the company. The outcome of this action research project significantly enhanced the business performance. It is argued that the increased awareness of the actions and needs of others in the factory supported the enhanced efficacy in the production.