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Development of a selection system for methods of a "Lean Production System 4.0" for small and medium-sized companies (SME)

(Project duration: January 2018 to December 2019; Project of the cooperation partner RIF e.V., Department for Production Systems)


Problem Defintion

In the course of globalisation, German industry, located in a high-wage country, is facing the challenges of increasing productivity and reducing costs to remain competitive. In order to meet raising requirements Lean Production Systems (LPS) were introduced in the past. LPS represent a company-specific concept for the continuous alignment of all company processes to the customer requirements. With increasing implementation status of LPS alternative approaches have to be researched and reviewed to realise further improvement. Recent developments show that in particular the implementation of Industry 4.0, which commonly describes the convergence of real und virtual production worlds, provide new potentials.


                                                          Potentials of LPS and Industry 4.0 technologies

Despite this potential, so far there is no integrated approach that supports companies (SMEs in particular) in introducing and implementing Industry 4.0 based on (existing) LPS. Furthermore, company-specific frameworks and conditions have to be taken into account.


Main objective of the research project is the development of methods of an „Lean Production System 4.0“ as well as a selection system for choosing a suitable method for SMEs.

The selection system is based on standardised descriptions of GaProSys 4.0-methods and a typology for characterizing the company-specific framework and goals. Under consideration of synergies between the methods recommendations are derived which support the user in a step-by-step implementation.

Due to the publically accessible and software-based provision of the selection system a user-friendly utilisation is ensured.


                  Selection system for identifying individually suitable GaProSys-4.0-methods

Procedure and Division of Labour

The realisation of the objectives is done by the RIF Institute for Research and Transfer e.V. and the Institute for Advanced Industrial Management (IFU) in cooperation with a project-related committee.

First, the requirements of SMEs in terms of GaProSys 4.0-methods and the associated selection system are derived. In addition, synergies between existing LPS-methods and Industry 4.0 functions are investigated. The results are consolidated in a synergy-matrix. Based on that, GaProSys 4.0-methods suitable for SMEs are defined and their effects on essential target dimensions are evaluated. Subsequently, a typology for the characterization of the company-specific basic conditions is derived and the suitability of the GaProSys 4.0 methods for different typology characteristics is evaluated. Afterwards the selection system is implemented software-based. By evaluation of company-specific objectives and framework conditions it provides a recommendation for action for the targeted selection of methods. Finally the concept is validated in selected use cases.


                                          Procedure and Division of Labour

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Secretariat IPS
Tel.: 0231 755-2652


The research project GaProSys 4.0 (19840 N) of the Research Association “Gesellschaft für Verkehrsbetriebswirtschaft und Logistik e.V (GVB)”, Wiesenweg 2, 93352 Rohr is funded by the AiF.




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