Optimization combined with process mapping for maximizing product utilization : Investigating the utilization of products in sawmills, a case study
Sammanfattning: The handling and utilization of products is an important factor in organization that strive towards and optimal operation, where different methods in the handling of products have a direct effect on the organizations results. This is a case study where a sawmill with a process that is repeated for each new order in the sorting- and packaging of timber. For each scenario, an operator is faced with a decision, where the result of the organization is directly affected by the decision that is made. The decision in question consist of an amount of trays of timber that must be combined in order to meet a constraint in the height of each delivered package. The purpose with this study is to investigate how optimization combined with process mapping can help the organization in maximizing its utilization of products. The study was performed with a mixed methods approach, where a process map was developed to gain understanding of the process. An optimization model was developed and run given collected data. In the process mapping it became clear that for each combination of trays, there is a downgrading in length and/or quality, which affects the total value of the combination. A comparison of the results between the optimization models’ and operators’ solutions showed a theoretical saving of 3 655 435 kr annually, and an increase in product utilization of 3,81 percentage in this process. The results of the study shows that optimization combined with process mapping is effective in the terms of minimizing costs dependent on a decision maker.
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