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Lean Transformation for a global leading abrasives manufacturer

Client A global leading abrasives manufacturer

Location Shanghai, China

The Challenge

Our client Shanghai plant has operated for more than 20 years with an enormous range of products using a complex process. With a new senior management team, their objective was to be number one in the Asia market within 3 years. However, to achieve this objective there were some obstacles that needed to be addressed this included: long lead time lead to late deliveries (On time delivery was less than 80%); more than 100 tons WIP in finishing areas; lack of standardisation; poor equipment maintenance; lack of people engagement and strong resistance to improvement and change.

The TXM Solutions

In order to reduce the resistance to change, especially from operators, TXM helped Our client to select 2 pilot projects to do before addressing the whole plant Lean transformation. The two pilot projects selected were 2500T press TPM and finishing line 3.

TXM assisted 2500T press TPM project team members to identify abnormalities of the pilot machine, establishing focused improvement teams which tackled equipment frequent issues.  A Tee cards system was established to manage operators’ daily autonomous maintenance activities.

Operators following the Tee cards system to do daily autonomous maintenance activities, including cleaning, checking and lubrication

Finishing line 3 projects started with 5S. After good habits were established using 5S, then TXM introduced continuous flow and FIFO (First in first out) to make the products flow through the line.

Before and after pictures of tools station show great habit changes among operators in pilot line

After the two pilot projects were completed, TXM assisted Our client to develop VSM future state map and a A3 action plan to achieve it. The methodology used entailed applying TXM MAP (Manufacturing Agility Process) to improve overall production flow.

 Before and after pictures of abrasives loading area of production line

TXM also coached Our client using TXM LDLP (Lean Daily Leadership Process) to create a Lean culture in Our client. This included using visual management boards, Leaders standard work and Lean daily meetings

4 tiers Lean daily meeting in front of visual management boards to improve daily performance and problem solving

The Results

After one year applying Lean methods, Our client Shanghai plant achieved breakthrough achievements, including:

Reducing manufacturing lead time from 14.6 days to 10.8 days;

Reducing inventory by RMB 1.3 million;

Improving OTD (On time delivery) by 34.1%;

Increasing efficiency by 10.7%;

Reducing defects by 41.5%.