Lean standards – workplace organisation

Lean standards – workplace organisation

Customer

The customer is a Tier 1 automotive supplier based in Liverpool. Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions currently provide incoming goods inspection services for the car manufacturing supplier. The area provided for the Bluestones team to carry out their support activities needed to be brought up to a Lean manufacturing standard.

Nature of service

The main objective was to create an efficient throughput and repeatable quality process – one of our main considerations was to also create a safe working environment for inspection services to take place.

Tasks 

We wanted to take away all unnecessary items (noise) to provide an orderly work area (a place for everything and everything in its place).

We enlisted the help of our co-workers to review the current layout to come up with potential solutions to improve the flow of material through the area. Once a proposed layout was decided, it was shared with all stakeholders, including Logistics, Quality, Production and Maintenance.

An action and timing plan was agreed and subsequently implemented on time and within budget.

Project highlights

A safe work area has now been created, where out of normal conditions can be seen easily and where work passes through the process in a timely manner. All standard documents are available and easily accessed, all standard procedures are adhered to and all Inspectors are trained to standards and training is documented.

Audit procedures are also in place to maintain standards and a continuous improvement mindset is developing to look at any potential ideas to improve further.

Work area before

Improvement activity

Work place after

Lean Six Sigma – Yellow Belt Training

Lean Six Sigma – Yellow Belt Training

Customer

The customer is a Tier 1 automotive supplier. Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions currently provide inspection services such as Incoming Good Inspection and 100% parts inspection which include various forms of rework. We work closely with the client to improve our service offering.

Nature of service

Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions was asked to provide Lean Six Sigma training for their UETs (Team Leaders). The Lean Six Sigma training teaches the fundamentals of Lean and Six Sigma principles, tools and techniques, and aims to improve working relationships, effective communication, interpersonal skills and problem solving.

Tasks 

Ten participants took part in a two-day Yellow Six Sigma training course. The classroom based training was delivered by Bluestones Manfacturing Solutions tutors on the customer’s premises and was a mix of interactive and workbook based learning.

At the end of the course, participants took a one-hour exam of 50 questions.

Project highlights

96%

score one participant achieved

100%

pass rate

All ten participants passed the exam, testimony to the effort the trainees put in with our tutors. The course participants will now be able to work together and individually on process improvements within their company and contribute to any Lean Six Sigma project teams.

The trainee’s feedback was also extremely complimentary – all thought the course gave them a new insight into how they could think and act better, faster, smarter and easier.

Lean Manufacturing Skills – Extensive Supervisor Training Programme

Lean Manufacturing Skills – Extensive Supervisor Training Programme

Customer

The customer is a global server cabinet manufacturer based in Plymouth. Following running critical production throughput workshops with them and increasing production by 40% in a week, the customer approached us to provide supervisor training in leaderships skills and lean manufacturing techniques.

Nature of service

Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions was engaged to by the customer a second time to provide supervisor training to 27 participants.

Target 

The target of the project was to design and deliver five modules encompassing safety, workplace organisation (5S), leadership skills, continuous improvement, effective communication, standardised work, line balancing and one piece flow.

Tasks 

  • Interview and build a relationship with all participants prior
  • Create bespoke course modules to fit their needs
  • Conduct follow up visits to check for understanding

Project highlights

98%

feedback score

Across all 5 modules, we received an average of 98% positive feedback from the participants.

Following the supervisor training, the customer engaged us again and asked Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions to create a specific training module for senior management based on elements of the supervisor training delivered.

Critical Production Throughput Workshop

Critical Production Throughput Workshop

Customer

The customer is a global server cabinet manufacturer based in Plymouth. They initially produced approximately 600 server cabinets a day for clients globally.

Due to large international demand, it is important for the company to increase productivity and reduce downtime.

Nature of service

Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions was engaged to set up and run Throughput Improvement activity with full autonomy.

Target 

The target of the project was to achieve 24-hour production schedules within a week.

Tasks 

  • Understand current situation
  • Engage with and involve all key stakeholders
  • Set up live data gathering and downtime recording
  • Analyse data and produce paretos
  • Set up two hourly meeting all day
  • Discuss issues found, give ownership and close out
  • Create a sense of urgency

Project highlights

40%

increase in production in one week

Over the course of the project, which lasted a week, our customer saw a 40% increase in production. After the project was completed Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions was asked to train all the Supervision team in leadership skills and lean manufacturing techniques.

Our follow up visits have also shown that the results have been maintained as are the tracking boards and 5S standards. These behaviours have now been embedded in the manufacturer’s employees and are now the norm.

Long-term Firewall inspection process

Long-term Firewall Inspection Process

Customer

The customer is a Tier 1 supplier and manufacturer of hydraulic and pneumatic pipes. The company employs over 200 people and produces over 1,500,000 parts annually for their customers.

Due to nature of their business, it is extremely important to minimise, or more importantly, eradicate faulty items reaching their major customers.

Nature of service

Bluestones Manufacturing Solutions was engaged to introduce a firewall inspection process which could be carried on within the business after the initial project was completed.

Target 

The target of the project was to protect major customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from quality spills.

Tasks 

  • Set up firewall inspection with supplier processes
  • Collect and collate data sets
  • Issue daily reports to supplier quality department to enable effective problem solving
  • Update tracking boards

Project highlights

2

year project

0

quality escapes

Over the course of the project, which lasted two years, there were no quality escapes to any of the manufacturer’s major customers. The firewall inspection process was implemented successfully and continues to be used by our customer.