Imagine you have been brought in as an Interim Improvement Consultant into a plant in the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector producing non-alcoholic drinks.
After 3 days on-site you have discovered the following:
- There are no significant issues with product quality.
- There are 8 production lines that convert dispensed materials into finished products, packed ready for dispatch. The predominant performance metric is OEE, with a focus on efficiency and utilization. The actual performance varies by line but on average is 10% below corporate targets. This metric is used in the calculation of staff bonuses.
- There is a weekly schedule for each production line produced by the on-site Planning department, based on demand information from head office. This schedule is signed off by both the planning and production departments at a weekly meeting.
- The weekly “On Time In Full” performance against the schedule is currently running at 60%.
- There seem to be a lot of running changes to the schedule — you’ve observed 15 over the 3 days. Half of these are driven by head office, but half are driven by Production Leaders. The requests from production seem to fall into 2 categories. The first is a request to increase the production quantity because the line is running particularly well. The second is to change the sequence because of downtime due to maintenance or extended changeover.
- Although downtime is measured and reviewed daily there isn’t any detailed breakdown of the downtime by line. However, issues are discussed and actioned at a daily production meeting.
- There is a corporate drive to implement 55 and Kaizen Blitz across this and the other 4 plants.
You’ve been presented with a plan by the Plant Director, against which the plant is 5 weeks behind.
In 2 days you will have to present your proposal and outline plan for the first two months of your work. There is an expectation that you will start an implementation the following Monday.
Prepare an essay of 1,500 words that explains the priority issues you would address to achieve the lean principles of customer value and flow. In particular, explain your approach to planning and scheduling the production lines. What initial actions would you take and how would you measure progress in achieving a lean operation? Describe how you would engage the leadership team in your course of action.
Ensure your answer draws on and references the required reading and the additional references for Module 2, as well as other research you might do.