Shipbuilders throughout the world are continuing to move toward computer-integrated manufacturing (CIM) systems as a means of improving productivity, quality and competitiveness. Implementation of such systems provides unique challenges to all shipbuilders. One of the critical issues involves the choice of new versus existing computer systems (hardware and software), the pace of change, and the timing of implementation of new parts or totally new systems. These challenges and potential solutions are not only different for each shipyard, but are also significantly different for large and small shipyards. Surveys of current uses and needs of small shipyards in the United States and the United Kingdom were conducted to evaluate current systems and to make recommendations for potentially successful approaches to future implementation. The focus was on three major areas: design (design, drafting, engineering, and lofting); production management (planning, estimating, material control, scheduling, purchasing, production/cost control, and quality control); and administration (payroll, time charging, and billing). Based on this work, recommendations concerning systems for implementation and a framework for integration are presented.

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