Major Food Processor

A major food processor sought help from POWERS regarding their operational team support, training, and structure. They were looking for positive improvements in attendance and employee retention as well as improved productivity in packaging and processing lines. They also sought more equipment reliability.

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Problems

A major food processor needed help in reducing their costs, employee retention, and changing their culture from a nonactive/reactive reporting and excuse culture into a culture focusing on proactive continuous improvement. And it was needed quickly. They had attempted many different CI initiatives but were unable to dedicate resources toward providing front-line workers with consistent training, guidance, and focus.

Objectives

  • Provide front-line leadership with a structure that drives daily focus on barrier removal and elimination of persistent reasons for not meeting performance expectations.
  • Provide management team with the "tools" and processes that provide focus on all key performance metrics, not just daily schedule attainment, i.e. costs (labor and material wastes), quality, yield, hidden lost time (employee performance/operational), etc.
  • Deliver sustainable financial and plant performance improvement results.

Strategies

The Powers Company implemented the following strategies:

  • Collaboratively, develop a Management Operating System tailored to their needs that provides a structure for front-line leadership operations, focused on short interval area/line performance, discovery of reasons for off-schedule/plan execution.
  • Develop and train these key personnel on how to perform root cause analysis, solution identification, and quick action/solution implementation.
  • Provide similar development in the maintenance arena.
  • Provide specific focus on improved start up success.
  • Work with maintenance and production to improve lost time and downtime reporting and cause identification.
  • Develop defined processes to improve equipment reliability and utilization.
  • Train front-line management on leadership skills in communications, engagement, problem solving, accountability, resource management, etc., which directly correlate to the requirements for each role.
  • Develop a daily/weekly dashboard for real time data-driven performance for leads.
  • Set up the client management team and their HR team to be able to sustain these systems, tools, and processes after POWERS' engagement with new members to their leadership team.
  • Improve use and understanding of their CMMS system for robust maintenance planning, scheduling, and MRO parts requirement use and acquisition.

Results

$6M annualized savings with a positive cash flow of $2.9M during the project (within 26 weeks)

  • Paid for cost of engagement 14 weeks earlier than projected (out of a 26 week project).
  • Improved attendance and employee retention by 18%.
  • Improved productivity across packaging and processing lines by 9-28%.
  • Improved start-up success by 2-19%.
  • Increased equipment reliability by 11%.

Testimonial

“At first I was very cautious and almost cynical about getting into this initiative with consultants. What could they really provide that we don’t already know? Now at the closure of the project, I wish I had been a lot more engaged at the beginning and I think about the additional opportunities that we should have utilized your team’s expertise and perspective on. But, we have learned a lot and I believe my team is much better prepared to resolve these on our own. Thank you.” - Complex Manager