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SMART PM – Sustainable Manufacturing by Automated Real-Time Performance Management

Project idea and potential:

Every manufacturing company measure and control production performance with a system of KPIs. The aim of the SMART-PM project is to investigate and demonstrate new ways of collecting data, transforming data to information and introducing new decision tools based on valid information and economic models of the production systems. The project will be focused on four research problems; two input data problems without satisfactory present solutions and where the goal is to utilize and integrate existing and emerging technologies into new system solutions, and two more overarching challenges concerning integration and organisational readiness: (WP1) the collection of valid operation times for manual assembly and materials handling, (WP2) automated cutting tool condition monitoring for optimal equipment utilization, (WP3) the integration of information into decision support models based on production performance and cost and (WP4) prepare the organization for the digital shift towards more automated and real-time performance management. In the SMART PM project, we aim to increase resource efficiency for both machines and people by increasing automation and digitization in the company’s KPI system. The goal is to increase cost and resource efficiency in production by smarter utilization of existing resources, and for the use of measurement systems by automation of parts of the systems.

Brief background and state of the art:

Cost efficient automation of performance management in manufacturing relies on a comprehensive view of the KPI life cycle and seamless integration from data source to decision. The KPI life cycle was the basis for the studies and development in the previous Produktion2030 project SuRE BPMS. The potential for digitalizing performance
management was identified several years back and with the advent of Industry 4.0 and the digitalization of the manufacturing industry, this mindset has gained momentum. Previous research has shown that companies use a relatively large amount of resources for these efforts, and that the information collected is not always used in the best way. The maturity of using and integrating digital technology in the work of KPIs and decision support varies widely. In small businesses, the work is often done manually, and although larger companies have progressed in the development of digital solutions, there are shortcomings in integration between different systems and organizational functions.


The SMART-PM project will increase the resource and cost efficiency on several levels; more efficient data collection than today’s best practice, increased automation of low level decisions, better support of high level decision making by increased digitalization and automation of BPMSs and increase in organizational readiness.


The project will be implemented on several levels. Primarily, the project will include activities of development and test implementations at industrial companies, in close collaboration with research institutions. These efforts will also be linked to potential demonstration arenas at the research institutions for extended result dissemination. In
the previous project we developed and arranged a workshop format for stimulating SMEs to develop resource efficient KPIs for monitoring and developing their production, this will be further developed and used in SMART PM. The project results are also to be integrated into existing education at the participating universities, and when suitable, will Master’s students perform well defined sub projects. The project will also develop educational material to be used for broad dissemination aiming at competence development of professionals in industry, for example material to the digital platform edig, funded from Vinnova.

Project participants, roles, and management:

The project is a natural next step for an existing project consortium, with a somewhat modified set of industrial partners. The team has a well-established collaboration practice and has shown its capabilities in previous SuRE BPMS project. The project includes a set of smaller companies (Swepart, Mastec and Emballator), a set of larger
companies (Scania, Volvo Cars, Volvo CE and GKN Aerospace), academic institutions (LU, Chalmers, KTH) and one research institute (Swerea IVF). The roles are defined within this relatively large consortium with specific engagement in the different WPs, but with a common interest and knowledge exchange of automating KPI and performance management. Project management includes the project leadership, WP leaders and steering group.

Project manager

Participating researcher(s)

Mats Winroth

Mats Winroth

Professor in Operations Management at Chalmers


2030, Resource-efficient production

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Project time



9 750 000


Lund University, Div. of Industrial Production

Chalmers University of Technology, Div. of Techn Mgmt and Economics

KTH, Dept. of Sustainable Production Development

Swerea IVF

GKN Aerospace Engine Systems 


Swepart Transmission 

Volvo Personvagnar 

Volvo Construction Equipment 

Mastec Components 

Emballator Mellerud Plast 


SIP Produktion2030