Co-Engineering IT Services for Lean Operations

Co-Engineering IT Services for Lean Operations

Jay Ramanathan (Ohio State University, USA) and Rajiv Ramnath (Ohio State University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-276-3.ch007
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Abstract

The ACE structure is not only used to create BioS goals and work products, but also to perform the analysis needed to prioritize improvement projects and their tasks. We next show how the structure is used to define tasks and priorities to deploy in the context of existing enterprise systems and emerging technologies to reduce the time to install new PCs from seventeen days to one day. The related goals are met by quantifying the Interactions between global Lean and local Autonomic goals to achieve continuous improvement. Finally, we show here how a complex system ‘improves’ operationally through enhancements in a Role set that includes both Agents in the physical world and in the Electronic world. for related approaches to this also see Brittenham et al 2007a. We use the PC (personal computer) Build and Install service to illustrate methods for the improvement of underlying Interactions within a typical complex organization. This application was selected because it has the complex characteristics, yet it is representative and straightforward to understand. The techniques are widely applicable for the improvement of IT services and Primary services.
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Introduction

  • How do we construct the ACE structure to identify and quantify the numerous many-to-many relationships and service-based Interactions between processes, organizations, applications, and enabling IT components?

  • How do we apply Lean Co-engineering principles to analyze, prioritize, and target opportunities based on impact to the overall performance of the complex system?

  • How do we derive the requirements for deployment and configuration of existing enterprise systems and resources?

  • How do we develop a roadmap for improvement and the related business justification?

The ACE structure is not only used to create BioS goals and work products, but also to perform the analysis needed to prioritize improvement projects and their tasks. We next show how the structure is used to define tasks and priorities to deploy in the context of existing enterprise systems and emerging technologies to reduce the time to install new PCs from seventeen days to one day. The related goals are met by quantifying the Interactions between global Lean and local Autonomic goals to achieve continuous improvement. Finally, we show here how a complex system ‘improves’ operationally through enhancements in a Role set that includes both Agents in the physical world and in the Electronic world. for related approaches to this also see Brittenham et al 2007a.

We use the PC (personal computer) Build and Install service to illustrate methods for the improvement of underlying Interactions within a typical complex organization. This application was selected because it has the complex characteristics, yet it is representative and straightforward to understand. The techniques are widely applicable for the improvement of IT services and Primary services.

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The Business Challenge

The IT organization of a health-care provider with a billion plus in operating revenue had as a goal the reduction of the PC build and install process from seventeen days to one day. Separate IT teams have been created over time to provide the following services: service desk, Request management, inventory management, approvals, billing, deployment, assembly, inventory, and imaging/engineering. While some of these resources are shared with other processes, each of these teams plays a role in the deployment of a PC. Roughly, eight fulltime equivalents (FTE), of the 240 fulltime employees in Information Systems, are dedicated to the PC process.

Over a hundred Requests (also tickets) of Request type PCs install or fix are received each month. Since the PCs serve numerous different purposes in the hospital – from use at a nurse’s station to equipment monitoring - many variations are deployed. There are also many different types of software to be installed. Finally, there are multiple enterprise software systems in place – a customer relationship management (CRM) system is used for managing the Customer Service Center (CSC, defined as in ITIL) tickets, an asset management data base, a work order system for technicians, and a PC imaging system are all utilized. As is typical, these systems are not integrated and do not share ticket data or workflow status. About thirty five personnel and eight FTE are involved in this process.

A flow for the PC build and install process, or just PC install, can be seen in Figure 2. As with most service organizations, there were several challenges. The variation in Request s and related processing needs had caused the existing process to evolve over time to execute the worst-case scenario each time. Examples of this included waiting for approvals for small purchases or traveling to the site to survey it for proper wiring due to lack of site documentation.

Figure 2.

ACE structure representation of goals, Interactions, and Agents for continuous improvement

How do we justify improvements and create the roadmap for the complex environment, given tight budget constraints? The case study and project objectives were to address this as follows:

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