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Lead factory operationalisation and challenges


Publication Type:

Journal article


Production planning and control




This paper deepens the understanding of the lead factory concept by examining how the lead factory role is operationalised and what challenges are associated with it. The research is based on an explorative case study of eight Swedish lead factories in the manufacturing industry. The empirical findings suggest that the understanding of the lead factory concept should be extended as it is not restricted to one type of set-up. The findings show a spectrum ranging from an entire manufacturing plant, parts of a plant, to a virtual plant considered to be the lead factory. The research also shows a broad range of challenges experienced by lead factories. Several of these are related to and originate from unclear role, responsibility and mandate of the lead factory. The lack of dedicated resources for lead factory activities, specifically long-term development and difficulties in measuring the benefits of the role, were other challenges faced.


author = {Anna Granlund and Carin R{\"o}si{\"o} and Jessica Bruch and Peter E Johansson},
title = {Lead factory operationalisation and challenges},
volume = {30},
number = {2-3},
pages = {96--111},
month = {April},
year = {2019},
journal = {Production planning and control},
url = {}