Lean Factory Design
Launching a new production site is the best opportunity to avoid old problems and ensure optimum utilisation of space and productivity of people
Process flow was established in line with the strategic plan
Material flow was substantially improved resulting in significant cost savings
Situation – deep dive
One of the biggest Air Conditioning companies in UAE were coming up with a new production facility in GGC region. This was a part of their expansion strategy in the region.
The internal team at UAE had developed a layout of the plant. However, the management, before giving it to the local authorities for approval, invited SSA to develop better options as they wanted a LEAN layout for the factory.
The following were the objective of the initiative:
- Develop a block design for the new factory layout as per the prevalent processes & practices
- The layout needed to conform to the current plot selected
- It should show substantial benefits over its present facilities & proposed drawings while following the LEAN principles
- The new design should take care of the current challenges faced
Above all, the management wanted this initiative turned around in matter of weeks as the architects were kept waiting pending design submission from SSA.
Actions Taken – deep dive
SSA deployed a team of consultants for the project. The team had a collaborative approach, and interacted with the production team and the project head (mainly civil inputs) to come up with the design options. The following actions were carried out:
- Gathering of 5 year strategic plan for the market
- The activity relationships between the processes and the flow of material (product, quantity, space required, etc.) through extensive study of the current factory
- The cycle time for each product were observed and calculated to determine the space requirements
- The raw material, WIP and Finished Goods warehouse area were determined
- The flow (U-flow) were established and discussed with client
Results – deep dive
The team was able to generate multiple options. Among those, two were selected and submitted to the client.
The designs selected achieve multiple benefits over the current proposed design.
- The design options submitted are a substantial improvement on the in-plant movement of material. It reduces the material movement anywhere between 13% to 40% depending upon the product family.
- Significant improvement in terms of flow of materials (LEAN flow – U-shaped)
- Significant improvement on the plot area utilization over the proposed design
- Substantial avoidance in operations cost – as the RM & FG stores leasing will be avoided because of in-plant storage. The current cost (of rental & logistics) is to the tune of USD 1.5 Million