Continuous Improvement Concept
The Continuous Improvement concept is developed within CRUX
project "Design for Construction" of STAR
research program "System engineering in construction" at
Performance monitoring and learning from experience can be combined
together for developing the design and production functions in
construction. With performance measures of e.g. delivery delay,
lead times, proportion of scrap, amount of rework, frequency of
breakdowns etc. the design and site operational staff may identify
problem areas in the process, where these measures are going outside
the allowed limits or where non-acceptable development trends occur.
Also achieving targets set up may be monitored. The developed tools
supports setting up threshold limits, giving alarms and warnings and
identifying trends. Past experience may be saved in data structures
linking together the symptoms, problems and their hierarchies and
potential solutions to help the staff in analysing the situation and
suggest potential improvement actions.
The methodology and tools build on work done within the Esprit COMPRESS
project, but modified with special respect to the construction business.
- Report: Organisation Learning and Continuous Improvement Methodology
- Software: Prototype modules supporting the continuous improvement methodology
The continuous improvement philosophy is introduced to construction
enterprises. By the usage of the tools a corporate memory is continuously
built up and enlarged. This memory acts as a source of experience for
problem solving situations and improvements actions.
The developed tools will be installed at a test site. The data interface
module is used to connect to systems currently in use. After a training
period and evaluation of the impact on user, valuable feedback is available.
This feedback can be used in the definition of needed enhancements.
Impact on process lead time
Two feedback loops have been identified. The short-term loop involving
design and planning activities and the long-term loop involving all
activities including site operations. The short-term loop affect on-going
project, while the long-term loop can address and affect future building
The system accumulates knowledge and learns from the continuous usage of
the system. The effect on process lead time therefore depend on the extent
of the usage and the time it has been in operation.
Point of contact: Kim Jansson
, VTT Automation,
P.O.Box 1301, FIN-02044 VTT, Finland, Tel: +358 0 456 6768, Fax:
+358 0 456 6475, Email: Kim.Jansson@vtt.fi
Updated 22.6.1995 by Mika Lautanala
, Project Planning and Building Design
research team, VTT Building Technology