Since 2014, Saegertown has made strides toward achieving a flawless launch of their customers’ product lines: at least 13 various kaizens and hours of work by employees at every level of the Saegertown organization, Metform and Curtis. With years of planning under Saegertown’s belt, they continue to build upon the hard work of those who came before them. To keep working toward their vision, Saegertown team members participated in a kaizen focused on material flow from heat treat to dunnage. The kaizen comprised of three areas:
Within these areas, lofty goals were set to determine inventory storage areas and material flow throughout the CNC area while staying forktruck free. In a week-long kaizen event, they wanted to accomplish the following:
• identify and mark outbound and inbound heat treat locations;
• identify and mark customer dunnage locations;
• identify and mark staging area for customers’ WIP;
• identify cart and dunnage locations within the machine cell; and
• layout all areas on the floor with corresponding colored tape.
Value Stream Map Creation
The team began by walking entire value streams and creating value stream maps of current processes. This got the team thinking about the current process, and, for those unfamiliar with the area, learning about it and considering ways to improve. From there, they focused on data, dimensions, and peak volumes by part number. The group let the numbers do the talking. By analyzing data, they determined the number of lanes needed for Outbound Heat Treat and went to the floor to lay it out.
Material Flow Determination
Certainly, the challenging part of the team’s kaizen was determining material flow. The team divided into teams and layed out each customer’s area. They voted on the top three layouts and completed Lean Evaluation Forms for each layout. They combined the top two layouts and prepared to implement these areas on the floor.
At the end of the kaizen week, they accomplished nearly all the goals they set out to achieve. The team determined locations and layout for inbound and outbound heat treat, along with dunnage and staging areas for customers’ products.
Team Worked Well Together
The amount of work the team completed is a testament to how well the group worked together. The team took certain aspects of the kaizen further than usual. Through the kaizen, there were times when the team needed additional floor space. The found it, reorganized it, painted floors, and requested additional storage shelves.
Current Processes Continue to Be Challenged
In the spirit of improvement, Saegertown continues to challenge current processes by going through the 5S process and determining cart and dunnage locations within cells. They are staying focused on working towards their vision. Saegertown thanks all those who supported the process.
Outbound Heat Treat
Customer Dunnage After