Continuous Improvement comes natural to successful people and businesses, especially early on. People try to distinguish themselves at work by finding better ways to do their jobs and become more productive. Businesses constantly try to improve their products and services to gain and increase market share. As businesses grow, many times there's a tendency to resist change. "We're doing pretty well. Why change things? Don't rock the boat."
“Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence.” -Vince Lombardi
Read this page to discover
- how Continuous Improvement can be used to re-instill the entrepreneurial, creative spirit in all employees to discover low-cost, low-risk opportunities that can have significant positive impacts on business;
- why Lean Six Sigma is the ideal approach to implement a Continuous Improvement program; and
- why using Aftan Engineering is the best way to quickly implement and enjoy the benefits from Continuous Improvement.
Core Principals of Continuous Improvement
- reduce resistance and red tape;
- can have significant effects on improving efficiency and reducing costs when applied across the entire organization; and
- produce faster results and encourage more participation in the Continuous Improvement Program.
- yield major improvements on a specific challenge; and
- produce excitement in an organization for the breakthrough improvements of one challenge to be achieved on the next challenge
No one knows more about a process, the associated problems, and how to improve it than the person actually using it every day. People are also more likely to implement changes without resistance if the improvement was a peer's idea. However, to be successful and encourage employees to participate in Continuous Improvement,
- the work environment must assure employees will not get into trouble for noting problems;
- immediate supervisors must understand that having subordinates identifying areas for improvement is not a negative reflection on their job performance but rather a positive reflection of their leadership; and
- lastly, employees must receive recognition for their suggestions and improvements.
Nothing discourages employee contributions faster than a lack of information regarding the status of suggestions. Even if you don't implement an idea, it's important that the employee who made the suggestion understands why management rejected their suggestion. However, meetings take workers off the production floor. Emails can accidentally exclude key participants or get deleted. Utilizing Continuous Improvement Software or a shared database provides a centralized point for collecting and communicating the status of Continuous Improvement Projects.
How much time and/or dollars has the improvement saved?
What are the projected savings if the revised process is implemented across the entire organization?
Many Continuous Improvement Programs fail to measure results or control the solutions that have been implemented to ensure that they will be sustained. Failing to control or standardize the newly implemented solution can lead to a reversal back to the old way of doing things.
Lean Six Sigma Continuous Improvement Tool Combines Two Proven Methodologies
eliminates waste which is defined by Mr. Fujio Cho of Toyota as "anything other than the minimum amount of equipment, materials, parts, space, and workers time, which are absolutely essential to add value to the product"
Lean considers eight different types of waste including
- Over Production - producing more product than is required to fill orders and maintain optimum inventory.
- Idle (Wait) Time - time waiting for product to arrive at the next step in production.
- Delivery (Transportation) - unnecessary movement of materials and products.
- Motion - unnecessary motion by workers when producing products.
- Inventory - having more raw materials necessary to fulfill production requirements or finished good inventory required to satisfy customers' needs.
- Extra Processing - adding more work or quality to the product than is required to satisfy customers' needs.
- Rejected Parts (Defects) - product that must be discarded or reworked because it is not within specifications.
- Non-utilized Talent Waste - not fully utilizing workers experience, skills and knowledge.
Some Lean methodology tools include:
- Visual Management;
- Line Balancing;
- Schedule Leveling;
- Value Stream Mapping;
- Set Up Time Reduction;
- Standardized Work;
- Productive Maintenance; and
- Error Proofing.
Six Sigma focuses on reducing process variation and enhancing process control using
- Statistical Analyses;
- Design Experiments; and
- Hypothesis Testing.
Provides an organized, coordinated, and efficient approach for implementing a Continuous Improvement Program that benefits from both the Lean and Six Sigma Process Improvement Methodologies.
Why You Won't Find Better Lean Six Sigma Continuous Improvement Consultants
Experience is the key to success in any endeavor including Continuous Improvement. We are experienced engineers with decades of experience with Continuous Improvement in manufacturing environments with the responsibility of keeping lines running. We know how to implement Continuous Improvement without being disruptive.
We're led by a professional engineer with Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification. Black Belt Certification requires proven proficiency with the necessary tools and proven practical experience.
Lean and Six Sigma require focused time that can be dedicated to the initiative. Most employees have regularly assigned duties that consume their entire day. Therefore, employees accomplish Lean Six Sigma work as time allows or pushed to the proverbial "tomorrow" meaning it never gets done.
We're business people with top management experience. We
- know how Continuous Improvement integrates with the budget and overall strategic plan;
- understand all functional areas of a company and how the benefits from Continuous Improvement can benefit other areas; and
- how to communicate benefits to top management and other stakeholders.
Sustainability is a major concern. Implementing a Life Cycle Management approach is consistent with and complements Continuous Improvement. Therefore you have the opportunity to address important Sustainability issues in your Continuous Improvement Program.
Contact Us Online or Call Us at 610-914-1356 today.