Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Industrial and Managements Systems Engineering

Committee Chair

Thorsten Wuest

Committee Co-Chair

Kenneth R. Currie

Committee Member

Kenneth R. Currie

Committee Member

Leily Farrokhvar

Committee Member

David Romero

Committee Member

David A. Wyrick


Smart Manufacturing (SM) paradigm adoption can scale production with demand without compromising on the time for order fulfillment. A smart manufacturing system (SMS) is vertically and horizontally connected, and thus it can minimize the chances of miscommunication. Employees in an SME are aware of the operational requirements and their responsibilities. The machine schedules are prepared based on the tasks a machine must perform. Predictive maintenance reduces the downtime of machines. Design software optimizes the product design. Production feasibility is checked with the help of simulation. The concepts of product life cycle management are considered for waste reduction. Employee safety, and ergonomics, identifying new business opportunities and markets, focus on employee education and skill enhancement are some of the other advantages of SM paradigm adoption. This dissertation develops an SM paradigm adoption framework for manufacturing SMEs by employing the instrumental research approach.

The first step in the framework identified the technical aspects of SM, and this step was followed by identifying the research gaps in the suggested methods (in literature) and managerial aspects for adopting SM paradigm. The technical and the managerial aspects were integrated into a toolkit for manufacturing SMEs. This toolkit contains seven modular toolboxes that can be installed in five levels, depending on an SME’s readiness towards SM. The framework proposed in this dissertation focuses on how an SME’s readiness can be assessed and based on its present readiness what tools and practices the SMEs need to have to realize their tailored vision of SM. The framework was validated with the help of two SMEs cases that have recently adopted SM practices.

Embargo Reason

Publication Pending