A Quality-Based Business Model for Determining Non-product Investment: A Case Study From a Ford Automotive Engine Plant Academic Article uri icon


  • This article presents an innovative approach for determining non-product investment in the maintenance of manufacturing facilities using quality-based statistical principles. Degradation of process capability (Cpk) over time with respect to key part specifications is analyzed using a regression model to predict the need for investment. While the preferred approach is to track process capability at all stations in a production line, this becomes prohibitively expensive and impractical in many industries, including engine manufacturing plants. By modeling the trend in Cpk values from only the end of the production line, using subject matter experts (SMEs) when necessary, one can still identify production stations/areas of weakness in a manufacturing facility with reasonable effectiveness. We propose such a method to help plant managers prioritize their limited maintenance resources. The methodology is validated using a case study from an automotive engine plant of Ford Motor Company. It is being disseminated as a “best practice” to other manufacturing facilities at Ford. © 2007 by the American Society for Engineering Management.

author list (cited authors)

  • Nepal, B., Chinnam, R. B., Petrycia, J., Brush, E., Chisholm, C., Hearn, M., & Meixner, M.

citation count

  • 2

publication date

  • September 2007