Results of the cycle time reduction consultancy of incoming goods from reception to stock entry

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Lean method applied to the reception and quality control functions: VSM, standardized work.
From a short inventory on site, we identified simple and inexpensive actions allowing our customer to reduce the time of availability of the assembly lines of the parts since their reception.
During these waiting days, the goods are paid for but not usable: this increases the financial need for working capital. In the high-end watch industry, with fragile and complicated movement parts, gold and diamonds, this is no luxury! Reduction from 6 to 3 days of work in progress
How to reduce this time by one third?

Initial objective formulated:

"Identify gains in quality and readability on receiving, simplify, calculate the maximum load capable of absorbing. How to avoid mix-ups, inventory errors."

Based on observations

- Flow analysis (VSM: Value Stream Mapping)

  • Internal
  • External
    - Crossovers
    - Unnecessary flows (goods going and coming back), 20 to 30% of the posts are unoccupied (displacements, waste of time to look for the batches),
    - The urgency is permanent but is not felt in flow (structural): 50% of work-in-progress is urgent,
    - Saturated areas of "non-flow": uncomfortable installation of personnel, continuous discomfort,
    - Personnel involved:
  • Internal flows: data entry personnel
  • External flows: logistics personnel, Quality Assurance
    - Origin of blockages and slowdowns of the ERP (SAP),
    - Absence of cadences in quality control,
    - lack of visibility of work in progress in terms of number of working days,

The conclusions of the diagnosis in the initial objective

- Achievable capacity with the same number of people: minimum +30%, (corollary: -30% of personnel for the same use)
- Identification of untraced movements of valuable goods,
- 40% reduction of personnel and goods movements.

Interesting findings outside the initial objective

- Potential to reduce the waiting time for goods from 6 to 3 days,
- Simple means to visually monitor remaining workload,
- Possibility of using more space freed up by work in progress.

Support in the change

- Installation of work methods, the basis for continuous improvement,
- Elaboration of installation and moving plans to ensure the line up between reception and quality control departments,
- Increase in team versatility,
- Use of the space freed up by work-in-progress to improve working conditions and "line up" successive operations,
- Standardization of quality control work: upstream preparation: qualification of control ranges, time required.
- Visual flow of controlled batches and batches awaiting decision,
- Installation of visual indicators of work in progress and productivity adapted to the business: visual by the operators in number of man-days of work, calculation and display by them of their daily OEE (and not by the ERP).

The results after one year

- Organization of teams in inter-departmental processing lines,
- Quality control islands with visual indicator of progress: "standard bins",
- self-assignment of teams by island according to work-in-progress,
- reduction of the cycle time of the entry in stock of the products from 6 days to 3 days
- the need for an additional room has been avoided.

and the progress continues ...

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