Case Study | Electronics Sector
Our client approached us with the challenge of improving their material storage. Production space was being encroached on with product stored on pallets. Production time was also being lost due to multiple locations of product and operators were having to spend time searching for the right parts. In addition there was no system to use up aged inventory before more recently receipted stock. Other issues identified included damaged parts and a work environment that was potentially unsafe. There was the additional challenge of dealing with product that is susceptible to a build-up of electrostatic discharge (ESD).
Manufacturer, based in the Mid-west, of electronic systems for the automotive industry.
Electronics for industrial and automotive applications.
Collaboration to develop a lean solution to improve material storage & traceability of product.
Our client wanted to better use the space and to create a better flow of product which would make it safer and easier for operators to access product. In addition there was a desire to create a process whereby product would be used on a first in first out basis.
Our client asked us to review their current processes and devise a solution that would help ensure better and more efficient material storage and handling of the product. This would also help avoid quality issues with damaged parts.
The current process flagged up some intermittent quality issues which needed to be investigated and resolved so that only non-defectiive product could pass to the next process stage.
Our initial approach was to visit the client’s site to observe their current process.
The solution consisted of building First In First Out (FIFO) racks for the inventory. These were built using tubing that is electrostatic discharge compliant to suit the controlled environment. Visible identification of clear locations through the use of kanbans would allow for reduced time searching for parts.
The outcome for our client was as follows:
- Reduction of space required for storing product by 74%
- Reduction in inventory through the use of FIFO racks
- Reduction in number of defective parts arriving to production
- Reduced time waiting and searching for parts
- Improved traceability and visible identification of locations
- Ergonomic improvements – the FIFO racks present product at a height suited to the operator allowing for ease of access
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