AIAG to drive implementation of Lean It’s not just training anymore by David Lalain from Actionline Magazine, March

/April 2007 Have you ever gone to a great class, spent a couple of days learning new ideas, doing exciting hands-on exercises, but when you got back to the same old grind, you were so buried in catching up on the work that all that learning simply disappeared from your memory? AIAG is well known for providing great courses, and they have a solution–workshops! Attendees of the Lean for Executives & Champions and Lean Project Team Leadership have rated the training very highly, but they face a significant challenge to help their organization implement the principles. Workshops answer the question, “What next?” AIAG will soon begin offering Lean Workshops. The format is simple. Up to five companies sign up for workshops that include two days of training in Lean concepts at AIAG for up to 5 participants from each of the five companies. This is then followed by a 3-day workshop, at each company’s facility, where those 5 people, an expert facilitator from AIAG and others (as needed) work at applying one or more of the tools. Together they define the current state, envision a future state and complete a project plan for the transformation. The tools are dependant on the project and may include continuous flow, pull systems, cellular manufacturing, TPM, SMED, 5S or a host of others. One good example of Lean that is well executed in your facility can make all the difference in driving the use of Lean concepts. The combination of the training and the experience of doing will provide the impetus to drive further projects. The success and clear process for implementation will encourage other employees to come forward with potential projects and will give the company time to improve.
What competitive advantages would you have if you could: • reduce manufacturing and overhead costs by 20%? • deliver products in 50 to 80% less time? • free up capital through a 75 to 90% reduction in inventories? • improve labor productivity by 40 to 50%? • improve quality by a factor of 10x or 100x? • reduce the cost of poor quality by 50%? • reduce time-to-market by 50%? What advantage will your competitor have if they do and you don’t?

Lean has proven itself. What’s been missing was a cost effective way of getting started and getting the expert assistance required to do it right. I remember starting Lean at one facility and signing a contract for over $200,000 to provide the training and assistance in implementing the first few projects. For a whole lot less you can train dozens of people and run many projects, developing the needed expertise to continue to implement the process inside your own organization.

One of the most significant ways this approach differs from typical training is that it is project-based from the start. When your company signs up for the workshop you will receive instructions on how to identify an appropriate project: 1. Justification – Is this project going to add value for your customer base and will the results translate to bottom line savings for your organization? 2. Key players – Who is critical to the successful transformation of this process? 3. Boundaries – Where are the beginning and end of this process, and is the scope manageable? 4. Obstacles – What obstacles will need to be addressed before this process can change? 5. Metrics – What are the measurables of this process? 6. Goals – What level of improvement are you targeting for this, and what is the timeframe? 7. Participants – Who should attend the training? This should include the process owner, candidates to become leaders for future implementations and key people needed to affect the targeted process change. Others may participate in the on-site workshop or can be identified during the planning stage conducted in the training session. The first two days of open enrollment training at AIAG include: • Introduction to Lean • Lean Implementation Strategy • Project Selection and Management • Team Selection • Team Management • Introduction to Lean Tools o Value Stream Mapping o Continuous flow o Pull systems o Visual Controls, Kanban o 5S o Error Proofing o Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) o Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) o Quick changeovers (SMED) • Gap Analysis – Future State versus Current State Performance • Measuring the Savings from Lean Projects • Executive Reports & Management Review Process During the on-site workshop the participants will: • Day 1 o Review methods to map, measure and analyze the current process o Identify waste, value added versus non-value added activities o Process walk to identify waste, and document the current process

o Review process metrics and set goals for improvement o Training, as needed, in the most applicable improvement tools o Release report on the opportunities to management and co-workers for input Day 2 o Envision a process that eliminates the waste and exceeds the goals o Map the proposed process o Identify the steps to reach the new process o Develop a detailed action plan o Release report on the proposed changes to management and co-workers for approval Day 3 o Implement the action plan, get it started and keep it going o Additional training as needed to support the action plan o Next steps Measure and report on successes How to identify and improve the next process

Even if you have an active Lean process, this offering from AIAG can help. Get an objective outside view of your process and additional resources at your disposal, and you may find new opportunities or resources to get the successes you need. AIAG is planning to hold at least one workshop a quarter and will arrange the training and on-site schedule to fit the needs of companies that sign-up. Please call the training registration office at 248.358.3003 or visit to enroll.

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