TechnoNICOL Corporation shares expertise in lean manufacturing
September 29–30, the VII Lean manufacturing forum «Increase in operational effectiveness» takes place in Moscow. The Logistics Director of Mineral insulation Tatyana Bertova, one of the nationally renowned experts in lean manufacturing, spoke about how the Japanese concept of effective production was introduced at TechnoNICOL plants and what were the main methods for elimination of waste.
The concept of lean manufacturing lies in the heart of the TechnoNICOL philosophy. Essentially, lean is centered on the creation of a smooth production flow with no interruptions, capable of flexible adjustments to serve the changing demand. A compulsory tool here is the reduction of waste, which is any action that consumes resources but does not add value. The waste can be caused by excessive expenses on raw materials, unevenness in workloads, overburden and down time of equipment.
The identification of wastes is performed through value stream mapping and reducing excessive processes that cause unreasonable losses. For example, the elimination of transportation waste at one of the plants (the distance was curtailed by 200 meters only) made in possible to get the economic effect worth 600 000 rur per year. Another saving tool is the decrease in down time of equipment and staff. Calculations have revealed that one down time minute at production line costs 1800 rur. The company’s essential goal is thus to escape scheduled and unscheduled stops in production flow and lower time on equipment resetting when switching from one product type to another.
Another typical source of waste with manufacturing companies is excessive stock and overproduction. The market of construction materials is subject to seasonal fluctuations, which means that the storage time varies depending on the season. The company’s significant achievement is the medium three days storage period in high season. In order to escape overproduction we use the precise amount of raw materials for the ordered lot. As a result, we have no excessive products from previously executed orders.
The model of the TechnoNICOL production system encloses the Continuous improvement block. The company’s management involves almost all the employees in working on constant improvement. This work already pays off. Now, each employee gives over two rational proposals each year. The way of improvement and reduction of various wastes allows the company to annually save about 200 mn rur.