DPA Helps Sealing Products Producer Reduce Lead Manufacturing Lead Time By 64.8%
A manufacturer of silicone and polyurethane sealing products forecast a 40%+ increase in demand from one of their largest aerospace customers. In its supplier health assessment, the customer recommended the company comprehensively apply sound Value Stream Map (VSM) and other lean principles to help it meet all customer requirements.
An initial assessment showed that the robust implementation of VSM could boost productivity by 25% or more. The company called upon Daniel Penn Associates to help them implement a VSM training and improvement program before investing in additional capital equipment or employees.
Working with three management interns from a local university and a team of seven employees, the company decided to create a “proof of concept” VSM project for one of the facility’s simple, contained production cells. Lessons learned from this first VSM would then be applied to more complex processes that have a higher impact on the business.
Learning to See the Current State
Daniel Penn Associates senior consultant Paul Bourdon presented “learning to see” exercises that would prepare the VSM team to map out the production cell’s “current state” value stream.
Mapping the Cell’s Future State
The team was then trained in future state concepts, concentrating on flow and pull of inputs through a cell. This training led to the team’s brainstorming methods that could be used to apply pull and flow concepts to the production cell.
Next, the team developed a comprehensive action-driven timeline to apply future state concepts they had developed to improve the cell’s efficiency.
The future state map examined each task that would be required to improve the cell’s productivity: PQ analysis, batch intervals, standard work, the inspection process, turnback reduction training, technical maintenance, the inspection process, and schedule stability. In an implementation time plan, they prioritized when each task would begin and end, and which team member would work together to implement them.
Lead Times Slashed
Based on the plan created from their first VSM event, the student and employee team was able to reduce lead time for the manufacturing portion of the process from 25.5 days to nine days, a 64.8% reduction.
Building on Success
Based on the team’s success in its first VSM event, the company has formed additional teams to develop Current and Future State VSMs – with corresponding improvement plans – for core processes that have high volume and the potential for significant improvements and customer satisfaction.