Operational Excellence with IMIG Czech in an international automotive company
Operational Excellence is high on the agenda of many companies. The optimization of production processes presents new challenges, but also new possibilities. In the following article, Dr. Massimiliano Coco gives an insight into his current project at an international automotive company, in which IMIG Czech has introduced operational excellence.
This customer develops and manufactures high-quality plastic, metal and hybrid products for groups from the automotive industry worldwide at four international locations.
Global competition is increasing and making the market less accessible. The challenge that companies face is to maintain and expand their positioning. On the one hand, companies must rely on innovative and intelligent technologies; on the other hand, they must continually optimize their processes in order to maintain a competitive market position. This, in turn, helps you to maintain your production base, also in Europe.
Operational Excellence is the term used to describe efforts to reduce labour costs and improve the performance of the production process. The aim of the project is "to eliminate losses and waste in production" and "to bring production to the optimum level". The focus is on production efficiency, with the goal of significantly improving process performance (capacity utilization, product quality, availability, safety and delivery performance) and reducing costs. Consumption, raw material usage, inventories, personnel and capital resources also play an essential role.
To achieve operational excellence, I prefer the DMAIC (define & measure, analyze & improve, control) approach:
Fig. 1: DMAIC approach; Source: GoLeanSixSigma.com
1. define & measure
The current production status is evaluated as part of an initial optimization potential analysis. The focus in this phase is on key cost pools and identification of key performance indicators (KPIs) that impact production efficiency. The next step is to define the content and scope of the optimization project.
2. analyze & improve
In the second phase, the team examines the cause and effect relationships and develops the action plan, the project plan and plans the budget for the final implementation phase.
In the third phase, it is crucial for the success of the entire project that the identified solutions be adapted to existing systems and workflows. In addition, the employees must be brought on board and trained early. Finally, the monitoring and control of the functions are implemented.
In order for sustainable, operational excellence to be achieved, the leadership philosophy and the ability to carry it out also play an important role. The focus is on the pursuit of continuous development and effective use of the skills and competencies of the employees. Therefore coaching routines (Coaching Kata) is also an important part of this project with qualification programs, intensive, individual training as well as structured and holistic change management.
Dr. Matthias Hartmann
Managing Director I IMIG Czech
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