The Value We Bring
The reporting, mapping, and overall process was absolutely perfect." - Delivery Services Manager, Abbott, Abbott Park, IL
What is Management Consulting?
A person or firm primarily retained to provide solutions to problems. The typical benefits of hiring a management consultant include the following:
- Independence—the management consultant brings an independent view of issues and should not be biased by company culture or politics.
- Skills—the management consultant brings knowledge, creative skills, experience, and industry insights gained through similar projects. These skills bridge the gap to arrive at a solution.
- Analysis—A management consultant is likely to bring analytical tools, methods, and best practices that might not otherwise be available to others in your company.
- Resource—the management consultant’s time and costs are a variable cost that can be managed by the client. Your company cannot possibly retain full-time people with all the necessary skills and expertise for all your special project needs.
These case studies provide examples of the solutions we have generated for our clients.
Case Studies that Demonstrate Measurable Results
Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient Manufacturer: Increase Capacity for Top Selling Product
A major pharmaceutical producer increased their capacity 10% using the lean tools of value stream mapping. kaizen, and quick changeover. They reduced changeover time on the targeted chemical reactor by 50% on the first pass enabling them to meet customer demand without spending additional capital on new equipment.
Number One Producer of Cannabis Edibles in California
Upon the successful completion of its initial public offering we were contacted by the acting CFO to conduct an assessment of their cannabis edible plant in California to determine if the plant had the capacity to meet the projected sales growth.
We conducted a two-day assessment with recommendations for doubling existing capacity with little or no additional investment. Some of our recommendations included: quick changeover, root cause analysis, co-location of resources, minimization of hand-offs, and other waste reduction concepts.
Independent Global Safety Science Company: Reduce Certification Turnaround Time
A global product safety testing organization reduced cycle time at their European Transaction Center from 65 days to 15 days. Reduced customer project backlog in 5 engineering sections by 67% and experienced a total reduction of the entire backlog (180 projects) in one engineering section in 3 months enabling them to improve customer responsiveness, using our lean daily management tools, value stream mapping, kaizen and PDCA.
An Integrated Full Service Provider to Leading Companies in the Global Healthcare Industry Commercial Manufacturing and Packaging Group: Lean Transformation Initiative
Capacity Optimization-Reducing unplanned downtime
Facilitated and coached a cross-functional capacity optimization project team, whose efforts were targeted at reducing unplanned downtime. The average production downtime was 56% comprised of a planned downtime of 43% and unplanned downtime of 13%. The team mapped the downtime process and prioritized the non-valued added steps impacting unplanned downtime. The team discovered that the non-value-added activity unplanned exception reports occurred on approximately once per day shutting a line down for 10 hours on average.
The team reduced the unplanned exception related downtime reports from an average of 10 hours to 1.5 hours and established visual controls for the group issuing the exception reports to measure future performance for the unplanned exception report cycle time.
Coached two production teams in problem solving to help reduce issues causing downtime. The results achieved were:
- Team 1 reduced unplanned downtime on the production line for packaging a major product 95% from 440 minutes to 20 minutes per run. This packaging configuration is run at least 30 times per year.
- Team 2 conducted root cause analysis and identified one of the major root causes slowing down production on their packaging line. On first pass, they reduced the unplanned downtime attributed to this cause by 7%.
Lean Daily Management and Visual Control
- Implemented a lean daily management system on 33 production lines consisting of daily production huddles and visual control boards to plan daily workload and identify barriers to not meeting plan. As part of the daily management system all supervisors were trained in Leader Standard work methods including identification of their standard work activities (daily, monthly, etc.).
- Implemented Lean Daily Management system in the Finance Department helping them to reduce their month-end closing process from 4- 5 days to 3.1 days.
These are only a few of the results achieved during the engagement.
Small Hand Tool Manufacturer: Increase Productivity and Reduce Costs
a $100M hand tool manufacturer increased their productivity 20% enabling them to avoid staff reductions. Coincidentally reducing costs 22%, saving $15M annually. The company also increased on time delivery from 58% to 95% in 4 months using our Lean Manufacturing and process improvement skills.
Diversified Oil & Gas Services Company: HACCP Compliance for Food Preservative
A medium size oil and gas services company achieved HACCP compliance for one of the food preservatives they produced at their California facility by contacting us to conduct an assessment of the operation. Some of the tools we used during the engagement included process mapping and analysis to determine critical process steps, and quality system development using the ISO 9001 standard.
Division of a Major Contract Packager: Reduce End -to-End Processing Time (order entry to ship) by at Least 40%
A division of a major contract packager to the most recognizable brands in the world in the consumer, personal care, OTC drug, medical and industrial markets wanted to reduce their end-to-end processing time from one week to 2 – 3 days.
Working with an assigned team selected by management we mapped the current and future states for the process and identified non-value-added steps making up 39% of the processing time. Our recommended action plan resulted in a 46% reduction in touch time-the time the order was actually being worked on and value was being added- from 16.8 hours to 7.68 hours.
Follow on implementation of our recommended changes will reduce end to end processing time to 3 days. The tools used during this engagement consisted of team facilitation/coaching, process mapping, value stream mapping, and kaizen.
Small Manufacturer of Food Processing Equipment: Increase Revenue and Teamwork
Using our business management and process improvement skills we worked with the client over a two-year period to build a strong management team and improve revenue. Some of our interventions included DISC assessments, training, mentoring and goal setting to improve communication and collaboration amongst the management team, “our team is functioning better than before.” From the process improvement aspect, we introduced workplace organization and process mapping which aided in speeding a new machine design to market and increased the capacity to handle new business. Sales of the new machine led to increased revenue. The company experience it best revenue growth in five years.
Small Precision Tool Manufacturer: Maintain ISO 9001: 2015 Certification
A small tool manufacturer transitioning from ISO 9001:2008 to ISO 9001:2015 had received 5 nonconformances (two minors and three majors) during a third-party audit. They were in jeopardy of not achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification.
Client called us in to help them respond to the nonconformances and put them on the right track for transitioning to ISO 9001:2015 and maintaining their certification. We reviewed the nonconformances and developed a plan to answer the non-compliances within 12 weeks.
We revised the old policy manual to align with the new standard, created an interaction of processes map, developed process models for the key processes, established a process to address the context of the organization requirement of the standard, identified risks and opportunities and set up a system to prioritize the risks and opportunities. We also helped the client develop action plans to address the high priority risks and opportunities. Once the new system was in place we trained internal auditors and led internal audits of the system.
We digitized/hyperlinked all documentation and installed it on their IT system, providing access from the boardroom down to the shop floor.
Finally, we facilitated a management review meeting of the new system. The documented evidence of all the changes was then presented to the third-party auditor for review. The third-party auditor conducted a certification assessment and found no major or minor nonconformances enabling the client to meet all the requirements of ISO 9001:2015 and remain certified to ISO 9001.
Please read the latest edition of our Operational Excellence Newsletter for more examples of process improvement.