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Collaborative methods and tools to remotely develop multi-sites engineering standards : the case of GE renewable energy-hydro

Rachad El Badawi El Najjar 1
1 G-SCOP_CC [2016-2019] - Conception collaborative [2016-2019]
G-SCOP - Laboratoire des sciences pour la conception, l'optimisation et la production
Abstract : In a global economy, the conquest of exploring and acquiring new markets has led many companies to expand their business around the globe. Many companies adopted a strategy of shifting from a centralized company where products were designed and manufactured in one region to a decentralized company, and then to a distributed organization over the regions. Our thesis context is GE Renewable Energy – Hydro solutions that designs and manufactures hydraulic power plants. GE hydro organization is scattered over 5 regions (North America, Latin America, Europe, China and India). Each region became part of this distributed organization where they participated in the designing and the manufacturing of the hydraulic turbines/ generators. However, new challenges arose in this distributed product development process: specific market needs, different working practices, various design methods, multitude of design tools in addition to the cultural differences among the regions.In order to rationalize the regional differences, the distributed development of hydraulic turbines and generators entailed several objectives. For example, standardization of engineering processes, development of common design guides for engineering tools, harmonization of quality sheets and troubleshooting procedures. Hydro organization has entrusted these objectives to the virtual engineering collectives who are dispersed in all the regions.Our research aimed at studying and supporting the virtual engineering collectives in the co-creation of corporate engineering standards and guidelines. The virtual engineering collectives involved the designers, industrial engineers, technicians as well as the end-users. They had to remotely collaborate in order to co-develop the engineering standards and later on to adopt them in customer projects.Since the virtual engineering collectives were at the core of our standardization approach, the thesis addressed the following research questions:1-“which collaborative standardization process and platform could enable the engineering collectives to co-develop their standards at distance?”2-“what are the characteristics of the different virtual collectives’ types which suit respectively the collaborative standardization process?”3-“which operational process has to be defined to ease the work of the virtual engineering collectives within a project based management style?”From the literature, we defined and differentiated the virtual engineering collectives’ types as virtual communities of practice and/or interest, virtual teams and networks of learning. Through observations and reflections from the practice, we have developed and tested our propositions. The main thesis’ contributions are summarized as follows:1-The collaborative standardization process to co-develop the engineering standards at distance.2-HySPeC templates – the collaborative standardization platform - to respond to the different requirements of the collaborative standardization process.3-The virtual collectives’ dynamics (VCD) model to characterize the virtual collectives in function of their development phases.4-The virtual collectives’ framework (VCF) to select, differentiate and fit the virtual collectives in function of the project’s objectives.5-The virtual collectives’ operational process to facilitate the adoption and the implementation of the engineering standards in the customers’ projects.The top management at GE Hydro found the proposed collaborative standardization approach able to co-develop the engineering standards at distance. The different virtual collectives’ types can fit and adapt to the collaborative standardization process and intuitively use the collaborative platform’ functionalities. The approach also provided an operational process to facilitate the integration and the work of the virtual engineering collectives within the distributed hydro organization.
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Submitted on : Friday, October 27, 2017 - 3:35:30 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 14, 2020 - 4:19:18 AM
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  • HAL Id : tel-01625432, version 1



Rachad El Badawi El Najjar. Collaborative methods and tools to remotely develop multi-sites engineering standards : the case of GE renewable energy-hydro. Electric power. Université Grenoble Alpes, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017GREAI002⟩. ⟨tel-01625432⟩



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