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The New Role Of Industrial Engineers May Not Include Traditional Industrial Engineering Practices

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Industrial Engineering Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1278.1 - 9.1278.6

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Paper Authors

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Michael Sanders

author page

Ken Morrison

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

The New Role of Industrial Engineers May Not Include Traditional Industrial Engineering Practices

Michael Sanders, Ph.D. Phone: (810)762-7947 Email: Kenneth Morrison, Ph.D. Phone: (810) 762-7941 Email: Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering & Business Kettering University 1700 West Third Avenue Flint, MI 48504, USA Fax: (810) 762-9924

Keywords: Industrial Engineering, Global Manufacturing System, Supply Chain System, ERP, Micro- IE, Macro-IE, Lean System, NON-Value-added Activity, Process Modeling, Process Improvement, Web Applications.


The current engineering education focuses on fundamental engineering concepts that have been taught for many decades. Many programs in industrial engineering offered in various universities are often structured in a way that exhausts topics such as process diagnosis, control, and improvement. These programs consider quality, work design and ergonomics, and material flow as the central theme of their curricula. However, they do not focus on the systems view of organizations as much as they should, specifically during the time of organizational change.

Due to the recent technological advancement in information technology and opportunities provided by the Internet, many playing fields in the manufacturing industry have changed to reflect rapid market changes and requirements. This includes globalization of manufacturing functions and activities, hence creating a set of new challenges to Industrial Engineers (IEs) in the organizations. Recently, we have learned that General Motors (GM) Corporation has been seriously considering a dramatic change in their industrial engineering departments worldwide. There has even been talks in GM regarding elimination of industrial engineers and distributing their main functions and activities to the process operators. Many other manufacturing organizations are mainly focusing on the process and system changes and improvement as they link to the ir overall industry supply chain. Therefore, these organizations seek industrial engineers with more knowledge and education in systems engineering and optimization than process improvement and operator safety. In addition, the

Sanders, M., & Morrison, K. (2004, June), The New Role Of Industrial Engineers May Not Include Traditional Industrial Engineering Practices Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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