Category Archives: Workshop

Lean training

Excellent results from the latest Lean programme – one place remaining for September

So what happens on a Lean Business programme?

It has been our pleasure to train and mentor this group. They completed the 2018 Spring training programme last month.

Let me introduce the group and briefly describe their results to date:
  1. Peter works in a label support area. He implemented a system for label distribution and return. This eliminated 75% of the time that the process had previously taken.
  2. Brian works in the packaging area. Applying the SMED technique, he reduced changeover time by 17% in the 3 months.  More improvements to follow!
  3. Gavin is a warehouse supervisor. His team have already reduced the average pick time by 13% with a re-organisation of the pick lists.
  4. Eoin works in Site Operations. He has standardised how the business will role out 5s workplace organisation to the new process areas.
  5. Bernard works in the test lab. He has established material receipt processes to achieve 90% of batches tested within 5 days of arriving on site..
  6. Sergio works in Customer Operations. He tackled Change Control and Deviations Lead Time. Mapping the current process shows an average 98-day lead time. The proposed future state establishes a 32-day standard.
  7. Adrian is Chief Operations Officer. He tackled lost sales as a result of stock-outs. This was at 4.6% for 2017. In 2018 YTD, the team have reduced these losses 3.5% (24% improvement) working with their suppliers and better forecasting processes.
  8. Maggie works in Artwork Management. She led a cross functional team to tackle the lead time for regulatory artwork approval. Only 74% of submissions meet the current lead-time agreement. Working with an international group, a new process has been outlined to achieve the lead time and improve the right first time approval rate.
  9. Mariska works in distribution and tackled order processing lead time. Unfortunately, due to business pressures and staffing issues, Mariska was unable to complete the programme. She will return to complete her project at a future date (she promises!).
  10. Gavin applied lean thinking and analysis to the variation of product sales across the sales regions. Product training and knowledge, standard sales process and merchandising and categorising sites were all key factors identified. Despite taking sales time out to complete the lean programme and tasks, Gavin also managed to increase his sales in the quarter!
    Three of the group missed the photo opportunity!
  11. Emma works in the lab and tackled sample turn-round time. Samples can have a lead-time of over 90 days. Re-organising the schedule and tracker, applying 5s to the samples in the fridge and applying kanban to key supplies make it possible to achieve a target of <32 days (23rd May to release on 22nd June)
  12. Paul worked with a client on his project – a vegetable grower and managed to improve the productivity of the packing area by 23%.
  13. Cormac works in the manufacturing area and has applied SMED to reduce the line changeover time by 61%.
Different functions

It is fantastic to see Lean applied across many different functions in the businesses that took part. The individuals generally had no previous knowledge of Lean techniques and delivered significant improvements.

Early results

Implementation typically comes towards the end of the period so results are likely to significantly improve with time.

Try it in your business

You may be interested in applying Lean thinking to any part of your business and putting these ideas into place?

Only one place remaining

There is only one business place (3 participants from the business) remaining on the next Dublin Lean Business programme. The programme commences on Monday September 10th.

Click here for details.

 

Employees are the best consultants you’ll ever hire

Lean process improvement is a great way to engage your staff on what matters in your business.

If your staff are viewed as just another cost item, you may be missing a huge opportunity.

It has been our pleasure to train and mentor another group who completed the 2017 Autumn training programme this week. In just 12 weeks, they have applied standard process improvement techniques to deliver great results in their areas.

This brings the participant number through the 12-week ETAC programme to over 450.
Let me introduce the group and briefly describe their results to date:

• Zoila tackled a high incidence of inaccurate information on the company website leading to 30 customer complaints in 12 months. By applying lean tools including Asset Care, SMED and Standard work, complaints have been eliminated, the process to upload new and updated data is streamlined and a significant opportunity to reduce the lead time to launch new brands has been proposed.
• In 3 months, Eddie has re-organised the storage of many bulk chemicals on site. Using 5s, Asset Care, Standard Work and Kanban, appropriate storage has been identified and time to retrieve material has reduced. Cycle counts, segregation of flammable and toxic chemicals and management of shelf-life will all be monitored using a robust Asset Care Program.
• Damien tackled the time taken to mill bags of grain in the brewing process. Using the 8-step methodology, data analysis and Kaizen, the team have achieved a more consistent water flow rate and reduced milling time by 33%. The impact is estimated at one additional brew run per week.
• Stephen has reduced line downtime in his area from over 13% to less than 5% in 12 weeks. The application of 5s, Kanban, SMED, Standard Work and Asset Care will sustain this improvement and should lead to further improvements.
• Gerry tackled the cost of over-production and waste in his area. The weekly cost of over-production on one line alone was estimated at €3k. By applying the 8-step process improvement and engaging his team through Kaizen events, the team have reduced over-production from 26% to less than 5%. Process waste has reduced from 10% to approximately 4%.

• Stephen works in calibration and has planned to reduce total calibrations by 9%, remove 3% of gauges in operation and improve completion to schedule by 10%.
• With some simple process changes, Tom has already reduced the average daily water usage by 28%. With local water metering, policy proposals and some capital investment, the team are aiming for an overall reduction of over 50%.
• Cormac identified over 41% of lost utilisation time in one area of the plant. By addressing unauthorised access, workplace organisation, and SMED (quick changeover), the team aim to improve utilisation and sell extra capacity.
• Sean, an operator in one of the work areas, identified that 15% of the trials had significant time delays and loss of product. Cancellations alone cost the business in excess of €10k. With a simple test procedure, his team have reduced these incidents to 2.5%.
• Brian works on the manufacture of a highly engineered device. Over the 12 weeks, changes made by the team resulted in a 68% drop in rework and a corresponding 36% increase in output. The improvements also led to a significant reduction in lead-time.
• Claire tackled unscheduled maintenance and downtime in a critical manufacturing area. An analysis of issues led to a significant process change. Coupled with a preventative maintenance programme and a structured approach to troubleshooting, early indications show an impact on downtime of over 50%.

We are very proud of the improvements that this group have achieved in 3 months.

You may be interested in applying Lean thinking to your business and putting these ideas into place?

Engage your staff in what matters in your business today.

ETAC’s 12-week process improvement programme can be run in-house or offsite.

Enterprise Ireland and the IDA offer support to clients through their Lean Business programmes.

Click here for details.

Leader culture

Do Leaders determine the culture of an organisation?

Leader culture
As a leader, the things that you pay attention to, the things that you encourage, and the things that you ignore, all send a strong message to people about how they should behave.

The worst behaviours tolerated by leaders are an indication of the culture of the organisation

What are your views?

Start addressing the behaviours and culture in your business today.
It is a key element to introducing Operational Excellence into your business.

Enterprise Ireland and the IDA offer support to clients through their Lean Business programmes.

Click here for details.

The Skillnets ManagementWorks Lean Business programme will commence in Dublin on December 13th.

Click here for details.

 

Excellent results from the latest Lean programme

You may have thought that Lean process improvement was only relevant to manufacturing staff?

It has been our pleasure to train and mentor this group who completed the 2017 Spring training programme last week.

Let me introduce the group and briefly describe their results to date:

  • Louise works in Finance and managed to uncover potential savings of almost €40k per year from the process for contracted work.
  • Amanda works in Customer Service and used Lean to reduce UK backorders from 17% to 0.6% and fulfil 99.4% of all orders within 24 hours.
  • Kevin was our manufacturing representative and applied 5s, Kanban, SMED and Asset Care to improve the efficiency of his production area.
  • Rosie works in Finance and applied Lean thinking reduce reporting time for all sites from 3 days to 1 day and eliminated some significant system errors whilst doing so.
  • Thomas works in Supply Chain and applied Lean thinking with his team to achieve lead-time reductions from his Far East Supply base. His pilot programme with a key supplier has already yielded an 8-day improvement.
  • Denise works as PA to the General Manager and applied Lean thinking to reverse a downward trend in sales with Irish customers.
  • Christine works in Product Registration and worked to reduce the lead time on product registration application from 55 days to an estimated 15 days.
  • Nigel works in Estimation and has applied Lean thinking to increase output by 44% and reduced backlog by 46% to date.
  • Andy prepares orders for printing and has reduce orders in his area by 38% and increased the value-add time of his process from 40% to over 50% – a 25% increase in capacity!
  • One of the group was on holiday – Lorraine works in Finance and tackled the customer returns process. In 3 months, an additional 20% of returns costs have been reclaimed, the number of processed claims has increased by 20%, the number of outstanding returns in the Irish business is at a third of what it was at the start of the year and the aim is to reduce the overall process lead-time by 50%.

 

We are very proud of the improvements that this group have achieved in 3 months.

You may be interested in applying Lean thinking to your business and putting these ideas into place?

The ManagementWorks Lean Business programme will run this Autumn at various locations in Ireland.

Click here for details.

Excellent results from the latest Lean programme

Lean Training

You may have thought that Lean process improvement was only relevant to manufacturing staff?

It has been our pleasure to train and mentor this group who completed the 2017 Spring training programme last week.

Let me introduce the group and briefly describe their results to date:

  • Louise works in Finance and managed to uncover potential savings of almost €40k per year from the process for contracted work.
  • Amanda works in Customer Service and used Lean to reduce UK backorders from 17% to 0.6% and fulfil 99.4% of all orders within 24 hours.
  • Kevin was our manufacturing representative and applied 5s, Kanban, SMED and Asset Care to improve the efficiency of his production area.
  • Rosie works in Finance and applied Lean thinking reduce reporting time for all sites from 3 days to 1 day and eliminated some significant system errors whilst doing so.
  • Thomas works in Supply Chain and applied Lean thinking with his team to achieve lead-time reductions from his Far East Supply base. His pilot programme with a key supplier has already yielded an 8-day improvement.
  • Denise works as PA to the General Manager and applied Lean thinking to reverse a downward trend in sales with Irish customers.
  • Christine works in Product Registration. Her project was to reduce the lead time of processing a new application request from the commercial team. Products requiring an updated GAP took 55 days.  – this is now estimated to take 15 days in future.
  • Nigel works in Estimation and has applied Lean thinking to increase output by 44% and reduced backlog by 46% to date.
  • Andy prepares orders for printing and has reduced orders in his area by 38% and increased the value-add time of his process from 40% to over 50% – a 25% increase in capacity!
  • One of the group was on holiday – Lorraine works in Finance and tackled the customer returns process. In 3 months, an additional 20% of returns costs have been reclaimed, the number of processed claims has increased by 20%, the number of outstanding returns in the Irish business is at a third of what it was at the start of the year and the aim is to reduce the overall process lead-time by 50%.

We are very proud of the improvements that this group have achieved in 3 months. The programme carries certification and their work will be submitted for a QQI award.

You may be interested in applying Lean thinking to your business and putting these ideas into place?

The ManagementWorks Lean Business programme will run this Autumn at various locations in Ireland.

Lean Click

Skillnets Lean training

Who is responsible?

We had another publicly highlighted case from our health service last week. It would be nice to think that the ‘individual responsible’ will be offered any support to deliver his or her recommendations to improve this situation. The political response suggests that the problem lies with individuals and doesn’t seem to question the process.

So what is the process? Whether it is a 91 year old patient or any other person in need of medical attention, is our process getting better or worse? Are the measures we use in our hospitals centred around patient care and patient outcomes?

Web healthcare

I had the pleasure of listening to David Fillingham in Cork recently. I learned that he had worked at Pilkingtons in St Helens (the location of my first post with Courtaulds in the UK) and joined the NHS in 1989. He spent 6 years as Chief Executive at the Royal Bolton Hospital where he introduced ‘lean’ principles to empower staff and involve patients to improve quality of care. I visited Bolton hospital a few years ago and spoke to staff involved in their lean programmes. Through Value Stream Mapping staff transformed outcomes for stroke patients. Collaborative work with new mothers helped re-design the maternity unit. Lab staff reduced the wait on test results from 24 hours to one hour to deliver quicker decisions on outcomes and release precious beds earlier.

Interestingly, David said that a lot more process engineering went into producing a windscreen at Pilkingtons than into the patient processes in the NHS. Unfortunately, the hard-working staff in our HSE are working with little support or budget to develop their processes. My view is that the best solutions to most issues come from the staff engaged daily in the processes in any organisation. They need a safe environment and supportive leadership to deliver great outcomes.

“A lot more process engineering went into producing a windscreen at Pilkingtons than into the patient processes in the NHS”

Learn more about Lean Business and current supports available at a free workshop in Dublin next Monday. The Lean Business Programme is run by Skillnets under the ManagementWorks initiative.


Lean Business

Monday, 16 November 2015 – 09:30 to 12:30
Talbot Hotel Stillorgan, Dublin

A FREE introduction to Lean Business and current supports available

Give your staff the right training and tools to deliver great results
Make a start with a Lean Business training programme
The Lean Business Programme is run by Skillnets under the ManagementWorks initiative. 

ManagementWorks logo full colour
ETAC will deliver the Dublin programme. The company delivered over 40% of the QQI/FETAC awards in Lean Tools in Ireland in 2014.

Participants reported significant impact on teamwork, quality and waste within their businesses and delivered an average return of €15,000 per project.

Register for the workshop