This project focuses on innovation and process improvement within the service industry.The problem addressed in this project is the fact that process improvement methodologies for manufacturing purposes are commonly found, while there is a lack of methodologies for service purposes. Since manufacturing process improvement methodologies are well developed and have proven to be rather significant within the manufacturing environment, these methodologies are employed as a basis for improving processes within a service
orientated environment.As a starting point for the literature review, a study of service industry characteristics was done. The literature review was then further expanded with a study of the basic process of innovation as well as well-known manufacturing improvement methodologies. The latter provides a clear knowledge of the concepts of each methodology as to attempt to extract the core ideas which has relevance to the service industry. Further, the approach and
conceptual design was discussed after which a universal model for innovation and process
improvement within a service environment was created. Guidelines and explanations of the
different parts (sub models) of the model were then provided. It is expected that the developed model will add considerable value to the existing literature on innovation and process improvement in the service industry, while it may also lead to
improvements of especially state and semi-state services provided within South Africa.
Thesis (B Eng. (Industrial and Systems Engineering))--University of Pretoria, 2009.