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A learning project organization

Boström, Adam (2012) MIO920
Production Management
Abstract
Background
Today many organizations convert from being a traditional functional organization to becoming more temporary project-based organizations in order to respond to the changing environment. As a result, project-based organizations have difficulties to learn from within the project and between projects which force project members to “reinvent the wheel” over and over again. If organizations do not reflect and transfer past experiences from past
projects, the quality of project learning and the transfer of learning to the surrounding organization will be poor and, as a result, reduce the quality of the project processes and reduce the value for the customers.
Research question
At Elekta they gather lessons from their projects.... (More)
Background
Today many organizations convert from being a traditional functional organization to becoming more temporary project-based organizations in order to respond to the changing environment. As a result, project-based organizations have difficulties to learn from within the project and between projects which force project members to “reinvent the wheel” over and over again. If organizations do not reflect and transfer past experiences from past
projects, the quality of project learning and the transfer of learning to the surrounding organization will be poor and, as a result, reduce the quality of the project processes and reduce the value for the customers.
Research question
At Elekta they gather lessons from their projects. While lessons are collected and filed in a database, Elekta is still in need of support to learn from them and feed them into new projects.
How can Elekta learn from past experiences in order to become a learning project
organization?
Delimitations
Elekta requested an implementation plan to be created for their product creation process. The plan explains how the feedback model will be best implemented and within which product creation activities. Thus, an actual implementation of the process was not conducted within
this project.
Purpose
The purpose of this thesis was to develop a feedback model which should help Elekta to learn from past experiences and apply these experiences in future projects. Moreover, the feedback model has to be integrated in Elekta’s product creation process. Thus, an implementation plan
was created.
creation activities. Thus, an actual implementation of the process was not conducted within
this project.
Methodology
This master thesis project has been conducted using an explorative and descriptive strategy,
where the explorative approach has been used in the first part of the thesis in order to develop
the theoretical framework. The second part, which consists of empirical field work, was
approached using a descriptive strategy where we describe in detail the current state at Elekta
and at four other organizations. Our chosen research method is the case study method where
the qualitative data was gathered from in-depth interviews and from internal documentation
provided by Elekta. Along the way we have used a deductive approach, which means we first
stated our research problem and then investigated secondary sources in order to form our
theoretical framework.
Conclusions
With the theoretical framework and the empirical data from the interviews in our backpack,
we propose a new lesson design template, a feedback model that takes the new lesson
template into consideration, and a plan for the model’s implementation including future
actions which should guide Elekta towards becoming more matured as a learning
organization. The lesson design template we propose makes it easier for Elekta to gather
lessons in such way that they can be applied and transferred to future projects which is an
essential element in the lessons learned process. The next proposed element in the conclusion
is the feedback model that will utilize lesson knowledge during process execution (e.g.
planning, monitoring) to support decision-making. The feedback model uses a pull approach
which means the user can search for lessons that are desirable at the time, using a knowledge
repository like Elekta´s current lessons learned database. The suggested implementation plan
proposes several features on how and when Elekta should review project activities and how
the feedback model is best implemented in Elekta´s product creation process. Finally, a list of
suggested future actions prioritized by importance shows, in a simple and lucid way, what
measures that need to be taken as Elekta prepares for its first steps towards becoming a
learning project organization. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Boström, Adam
supervisor
organization
course
MIO920
year
type
M1 - University Diploma
subject
other publication id
12/5436
language
English
id
3460376
date added to LUP
2013-02-11 15:07:39
date last changed
2013-02-11 15:07:39
@misc{3460376,
  abstract     = {Background
Today many organizations convert from being a traditional functional organization to becoming more temporary project-based organizations in order to respond to the changing environment. As a result, project-based organizations have difficulties to learn from within the project and between projects which force project members to “reinvent the wheel” over and over again. If organizations do not reflect and transfer past experiences from past
projects, the quality of project learning and the transfer of learning to the surrounding organization will be poor and, as a result, reduce the quality of the project processes and reduce the value for the customers.
Research question
At Elekta they gather lessons from their projects. While lessons are collected and filed in a database, Elekta is still in need of support to learn from them and feed them into new projects.
How can Elekta learn from past experiences in order to become a learning project
organization?
Delimitations
Elekta requested an implementation plan to be created for their product creation process. The plan explains how the feedback model will be best implemented and within which product creation activities. Thus, an actual implementation of the process was not conducted within
this project.
Purpose
The purpose of this thesis was to develop a feedback model which should help Elekta to learn from past experiences and apply these experiences in future projects. Moreover, the feedback model has to be integrated in Elekta’s product creation process. Thus, an implementation plan
was created.
creation activities. Thus, an actual implementation of the process was not conducted within
this project.
Methodology
This master thesis project has been conducted using an explorative and descriptive strategy,
where the explorative approach has been used in the first part of the thesis in order to develop
the theoretical framework. The second part, which consists of empirical field work, was
approached using a descriptive strategy where we describe in detail the current state at Elekta
and at four other organizations. Our chosen research method is the case study method where
the qualitative data was gathered from in-depth interviews and from internal documentation
provided by Elekta. Along the way we have used a deductive approach, which means we first
stated our research problem and then investigated secondary sources in order to form our
theoretical framework.
Conclusions
With the theoretical framework and the empirical data from the interviews in our backpack,
we propose a new lesson design template, a feedback model that takes the new lesson
template into consideration, and a plan for the model’s implementation including future
actions which should guide Elekta towards becoming more matured as a learning
organization. The lesson design template we propose makes it easier for Elekta to gather
lessons in such way that they can be applied and transferred to future projects which is an
essential element in the lessons learned process. The next proposed element in the conclusion
is the feedback model that will utilize lesson knowledge during process execution (e.g.
planning, monitoring) to support decision-making. The feedback model uses a pull approach
which means the user can search for lessons that are desirable at the time, using a knowledge
repository like Elekta´s current lessons learned database. The suggested implementation plan
proposes several features on how and when Elekta should review project activities and how
the feedback model is best implemented in Elekta´s product creation process. Finally, a list of
suggested future actions prioritized by importance shows, in a simple and lucid way, what
measures that need to be taken as Elekta prepares for its first steps towards becoming a
learning project organization.},
  author       = {Boström, Adam},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {A learning project organization},
  year         = {2012},
}