The opportunity to create more fulfilling and effective work in lean manufacturing is
considerable, but so are the dangers of reducing its quality. Lean organisations are
introducing new measures involving changes to people's jobs. However, the complex
nature of work organisation in lean production enviromnents are contributing to work
related injuries in particular Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI).
Previous research has evaluated work organisation changes in the workplace by
aligning work practices within business operations rather than considering the
working situation from the workers perspective. The issues of work related injuries in
lean production environments lack a coherent theoretical framework. This research
work in lean production environments, has addressed certain issues however doubt
and scepticism from the perspective of a range of disciplines, have emerged from the
In this research the possibility of identifying the levels of RSI risk has been through
the development of the Lean Job Position Model. The proposal of this model has
been to add and contribute to the aspects of work organisation in the lean production
literature, not been previously considered. The model was applied in a lean
manufacturing environment using direct observations semi-structured interviews, and
a questionnaire in an action research content. The testing of the Lean Job Position
Model showed that the use of Situational Strength as a strategic management method
showed the key relationships that assisted the process of identifying the level of RSI
risk in a lean manufacturing setting.
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.