Key tools or services
Implementation - Measurement, OEE , 7 wastes, problem solving
A transit damage problem estimated to be costing the company £300K annually was resolved by simply changing the design and construction of the components used to palletise the product, based on the ideas of team members involved in the everyday building and handling of the finished pallets
Innovia Films is a leading global producer of speciality films for packaging and labels. As the last major producer of Cellophane™ in Europe and the only UK producer of BOPP films, they face not only stiff competition from Asia and India, but also escalating energy and raw material costs. In addition, the business is seeking increased returns on continued capital investment.
To maintain leadership in their chosen global markets, they need to constantly review their manufacturing practices.
Large potential financial benefits were identified through a picme® benchmarking activity for this client and so the business chose to embark on a programme of picme® facilitated improvement activities focusing on reducing material waste. Three shop floor based, cross-functional teams were set up to reduce waste in three key manufacturing departments on the site.
Although top level waste figures were well understood by the business, a lack of detailed waste information at a shop floor level meant that significant opportunities for improvement were missed. Each team was facilitated by our experienced engineers through a process of data analysis and detailed measurement to identify the specific issues contributing to poor yields.
Structured problem solving and operational trials were then used to develop new Standard Operating Procedures and machine settings that minimised waste in key areas. These were implemented by training the new procedures to each of the shifts in a 5 rotating shift system and developing simple visual management techniques.
Following this success, a cross-functional team was set-up to look at increasing throughput in the bottleneck area of the plant. Structured data analysis identified maintenance stops, colour changes and machines not achieving target running speeds as being the main causes of lost capacity.
The team were facilitated through the application of SMED (Single Minute Exchange of Dies) principles to both maintenance stops and colour changes. The resulting standardised processes developed by the team reduced maintenance stop duration by 50% and average colour change time by 33%.
Problem solving carried out by the team highlighted that the lack of a robust monitoring and feedback system for machine speed was resulting in machines not achieving target speeds. By implementing a simple visual management system, the team demonstrated an increase in average machine running speed of around 5%.
The results were a reduction in factory wide material waste of 23%, from a total annual waste bill in excess of seven figures.
We have a strong track record in using improvement teams. The picme® process has given us is added sustainability - by instilling discipline and ensuring regular reviews
Prior to embarking on a series of activities facilitated by us, this business had appointed a full time Change Manager to help the company start its journey to becoming 'World Class'. Our programme of work was designed not just to deliver significant bottom line financial benefits and the start of a culture change for the business, but also to train the Change Manager in the tools and techniques to run improvement activities in-house.
The Change Manager began by being a member of the first shop floor based, cross functional team that focused on reducing factory waste. Whilst being coached and mentored by our experienced engineers through subsequent activities, the individual progressed through observation to assisting in facilitation. By the end of the programme, the Change Manager had developed the skills and knowledge to begin running activities unassisted.
During the first few internal activities, we provided support over the phone to continue the coaching and mentoring process. 12 months after the end of the original picme® programme of work, six internal teams were up and running, delivering further financial benefits for the business. A system to initiate, monitor and control activities had also been developed, to ensure the improvement process was a continuous one.
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