Fast Efficient Solutions to support Lean Production.
A key ingredient in achieving Lean Production operations is having good work practices to monitor and move the product (and components) around the factory.
Anyone who has ever worked in a high volume/high speed operation will vouch for this.
Organizing product flows, maintaining buffer stocks and keeping track of shop stock levels all too often proves elusive. Line stoppages, overstocking and product damage often result.Over the years, ATS have completed many engineering projects to resolve problems in this field. There is never a single right answer, always a solution which fits the product.
At Faurecia, the problem was non-stackable product, which needed to be handled with care and organization. The ATS solution = modular hanging rack systems which kept the high quality product in good order, enabled ease of handling without the need for fork trucks and enabled flexibility to deal with the ever changing production volumes and space constraints.
Application of an efficient kan-ban system was then applied to produce an efficient environment. Further developments being introduced include real-time IT based “operator instruction screens” and “shop stock dashboards”; completing the loop to a well controlled operations.
At GM in Mexico, the issue was the weight of the handling equipment(combined with the product) was difficult to handle. Injuries and accidents resulted, causing both cart and product damage.
The ATS solution here = redesign of the carts to both reduce weight and increase strength and durability. With over 600 units now in service, the result has proved to be quite successful by combining the best of Process Re-engineering, Mechanical Design and IT Systems to produce maximum returns.