Developing a Methodical Approach for the Systematic Identification of Innovative Technological Applications – Based on Mixed Reality in Manual Order Picking
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The need to be economically successful is the key driver for companies to be innovative and implement new technologies with increasing efficiency and effectiveness. Uncertainty about whether to use new technologies and missing knowledge about their advantages lead to staggering and withholding from fast diffusion of innovations. Focusing on the industry of logistics and the technology Mixed Reality, this research project developed a methodical approach for evaluating the fitness of an innovative technology and a specific process of application. A mixed methods approach was derived, based on interviews and experiments. The main methodologies used, were semi-structured interviews with decision makers in logistics companies to elaborate triggering criteria in the investment process and laboratory experiments for the evaluation of competing technologies. These methods were framed by an initial field experiment and feedback interviews after the analysis for the validation of the approach. The research proved the competitively viable applicability of Mixed Reality and its specific strengths and weaknesses in manual order picking. This set the foundation for possible further development and implementation of the technology. The developed methodological approach proved to be a valid and reliable assessment of the intersection between a technology and specified process of application. This can greatly enhance the speed of implementing new innovations and gaining competitive advantages for companies.
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