Your company has a process for designing and developing your manufacturing and supply chain processes
Manufacturing and supply chain operations must be designed if they are to work effectively. Many companies load work into the production facility without any consideration as to how materials can flow through the processes with minimal disruption.  An ability to design good factories differentiates Japanese companies.
Key Issues
·         The design of factories capable of responding to changes in demand and producing cost competitive, high quality products, on time is the key to long term business success 
·         The design must be undertaken by an experienced team embracing all the skills necessary to plan and cost justify any proposed changes
·         Stages in the design process:
o      Identify the need for change and establish quantified targets
o      Undertake strategic make versus buy
o      Identify module structure based on common attributes
o      Design the manufacturing modules in steady state, using work centre loadings and standard operations to establish resources
o      Undertake dynamic design, allowing modules to accommodate changes in demand and cope with unplanned events
o      Cost justify the changes and confirm they will deliver the business improvements agreed in the business plan
·         Once the designs are ready for implementation everyone needs to be trained in the broader skills for working in these flexible modules
·         No matter how good the design, world class performance can only be achieved by everyone being involved in continuous improvement teams
·         All processes must be robust and process capable
·         Must integrate the design of the module structure with capital investment in appropriate new technologies and training people to be multi-skilled
·         Managers must invest in the design of production and supply chain activities
·         Implementation must be planned to protect customer deliveries
·         People require training to acquire broader skills and to work in teams
·         Outside consultants can be useful to stimulate ideas but must not be allowed undertake the redesign without close involvement of the business team
·         Making significant changes requires a well thought out plan approved by the general manager and their team, and managed by a dedicated project leader
Factors for Success      
Factors to  Avoid
Release cash from work in progress for reinvestment in equipment and training
Design the modules to increase the flow of work through the supply chain
Ensure all processes are fully capable
Neglecting to undertake the necessary training to increase skill levels
Allowing equipment that is not process capable to be used by production
Managers wanting instant results
Who does this apply to?
General managers and their team, operations managers, engineering managers
Realisable Benefits
More cost effective manufacturing operations, better quality products on time


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