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Short Case Flexibility helps JIT at LOral

LOral cosmetics is now the worlds largest toiletries and cosmetics group, with a presence in over 140 different countries. In the U , the 4! 000 s"uare metre purpose#$uilt facilit% in mid#&ales produces 1'00 product t%pes in a spotlessl% clean environment, which is a(in to a pharmaceutical plant in terms of h%giene, safet% and "ualit%. )he plant has !! production lines and 4! different production processes, and the manufacturing s%stems emplo%ed are of a fle*i$ilit% that allows them to run each of the 1'00 product t%pes ever% two months + that means over 1!0 different products each wee(. ,ut the plant was not alwa%s as fle*i$le as this. It has $een forced to enhance its fle*i$ilit% $% the re"uirement to ship over -0 million items each %ear. )he sheer logistics involved in purchasing, producing, storing and distri$uting the volume and variet% of goods has led to its current focus on introducing .I) principles into the manufacturing process. )o help achieve its drive for fle*i$ilit% and for .I) production, LOral organi/ed the site into three production centres, each autonomous and focused within technical families of products. )heir processes and production lines are then further focused within product su$#divisions. 0esponsi$le for all the activities within his area, from pre#weighing to dispatch, is the 1roduction 2entre 3anager, whose role also encompasses staff development, training and motivation. &ithin the focused production centres, improvement groups have $een wor(ing on improving shop#floor fle*i$ilit%, "ualit% and efficienc%. One of the pro4ects reduced the setup times on the line which produces hair colourants from 5.! hours to onl% eight minutes. )hese new changeover times mean that the compan% can now 4ustif% even smaller $atches, and ma% give the compan% the fle*i$ilit% to meet mar(et needs 4ust#in#time. 1rior to the change in setup time, $atch si/e was '0 000 units6 now $atches as small as 5000+ '000 units can $e produced cost#effectivel%.