Solving recurring production line equipment problems eliminated quality issues and doubled productivity thus satisfying sales growth whilst avoiding a huge capital investment. Gross margin increased and the levels of stress suffered by machine operators disappeared.
Due to fantastic year-on-year sales growth, the production facility was at an average 80% despite the move to a new factory less than 18 months earlier.
Sales demand was volatile and peaked in Q4, which also happened to be the shortest manufacturing period in the run up to Christmas. This led to a lot of expensive overtime and the need to open the factory on a Saturday.
After completing a line study it was clear that three problems where causing 80% of the issues resulting in frequent line stops, quality issues and operator stress.
Problem one, which had persisted for years, only took one phone call and five minutes to resolve – leading to an instant and significant improvement.
The remaining issues took minimal revenue spend to resolve. By far the most significant investment was time for the maintenance technicians to identify the causes and implement simple & sustainable fixes.
This case study highlights that focusing time and effort on solving long-term problems can have a massive, positive impact.