PILOT - A Simple Process Improvement Tool for Small and Midsize Manufacturing Companies

Rodolfo De Dominicis, Vesna Luzar-Stiffler, Laura Granata


PILOT (Process Improvement by L.O.G.I.C.A. Operational Team) is a complete process improvement pilot study application, providing data collection, entry, analysis and decision making. It is designed primarily as a simple, easy-to-use diagnostic tool for production process description, problem identification and improvement in small and midsize manufacturing companies, characterised by relatively small amounts of data emerging daily. The analysis of the information collected facilitates tracing down the sources of the identified production related problems and finding means for eliminating or minimising them. The statistical methodology utilised includes simple, but useful tabular and graphical techniques, such as Ishikawa 's Seven Tools, but also some sophisticated exploratory data analysis methods, e.g. correspondence and cluster analysis. Furthermore, the results of PILOT constitute a good basis for developing more advanced studies, utilising statistical and/or simulation methodologies, and for setting up SPC charting information systems or designed experiments. An effective PILOT application in a midsize company manufacturing department is described for illustrative purposes.


process improvement, pilot study application, cluster analysis

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