Date of Award

Winter 1993

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Engineering Management & Systems Engineering


Engineering Management and Systems Engineering

Committee Director

Resit Unal

Committee Director

Billie M. Reed

Committee Member

Derya A. Jacobs

Committee Member

Ali Akan


Nationally, both public and private shipyards are experiencing a high rework rate (over 40%) in the fabrication of plug connectors used for electronic systems onboard Navy vessels. The shipyard's survival depends on acquiring the elements necessary to maintain a major industry in a position of continuous improvement that produces a better product than their competitors, at less cost, in a safe manner, and on schedule.

This research addresses the complex problem of how to introduce quality control methodologies within a job shop environment that assists in identifying variables that influence the rework rate of plug fabrication process over a four year period at Norfolk Naval Shipyard.

The research objective of implementing continuous process improvement in a job shop environment was addressed by: developing a multidimensional approach using nontraditional statistical procedures designated Small Run Analysis, Pareto Analysis, Deming methodologies, and Concurrent Engineering. A new system to implement continuous process improvement and to measure the results of the new system for cost effectiveness and improvement of quality was developed.

The research has resulted in a successful pragmatic introduction of small run analysis in a job shop environment and lower rework rate through cooperation of both internal and external influences. Additionally, this research indicates that the system developed for continuous process improvement was not only cost effective but also transferable to public and private shipyards, leading to better understanding of information using data bases, automation, and networking in a shipyard environment.