Enabling manufacturing companies to independently assess and design the adaptability of a socio-technical production information system by means of a web-based self-assessment

The aim of the 'VIper' project is to enable manufacturing companies to independently evaluate and design the adaptability of a socio-technical information system for order processing and production.

Initial Situation

IT systems (e.g. ERP, MES, APS) make a significant contribution to increasing process efficiency in order processing and production and are now an essential part of industrial value creation. In practice, however, IT systems only have a limited lifespan and companies often have problems with the performance and adaptation of IT systems. The reason for this is that when designing IT system landscapes and selecting IT systems, companies primarily consider the requirements at the time of selection and do not take future requirements into account. This can be attributed to the fact that there is no suitable description of the adaptability of IT systems. This leads to a renewed IT system selection in the future, which is associated with high personnel, time and financial expenditure as well as a loss of performance during the introduction of a new IT system.

Solution Approach

  • Definition and description of the socio-technical information system
  • Identification of change drivers and enablers and their influence on the socio-technical information system
  • Development of a method for assessing the discrepancy between target and actual change capability (based on drivers and enablers)
  • Development of a method for evaluating and prioritizing measures to derive recommendations for action
  • Practical implementation of the method in a web application to increase the applicability of the research results

Expected Result

The research project aims to achieve the following three partial results:

  • A guide with specific recommendations for SMEs,
  • a methodology for independently assessing and shaping the ability to change,
  • a web application as an implementation of the methodology for independent use.

Benefits for the Target Group

  • Improving the quality of decisions when selecting a new IT system
  • Increasing the longevity of IT systems and their performance over their lifetime to increase efficiency and avoid the costs associated with selecting and implementing a new IT system
  • Enabling continuous controlling of the target and actual change capability of the socio-technical information system
  • Reduction of effort and risk when adapting IT systems and change projects
  • For the developers and providers of the IT systems, the results of the research project offer support for the further development of their products with regard to the design of change capability.


  • IT, Software and Internet
  • Machinery and Plant Engineering

Topic Area

  • Production Management

Research Focus

  • Produktionsplanung
  • Produktionsregelung

FIR Navigator

  • Introduction of New Business Software
  • Modular (and Integrated) Software for Order Processing
  • JRF Guiding Topic

    • Society & Digitization
    • Industry & Environment


    Funding no.
    23099 N
    Funding information

    The IGF project 23099 N of the Research Association FIR e. V. at the RWTH Aachen University is funded via the AiF within the framework of the programme for the funding of cooperative industrial research (IGF) by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) on the basis of a resolution of the German Bundestag.