How business development is improving customer service

31 October 2006

Huco (Altra Industrial Motion)visit website


One of many benefits of Huco Dynatork becoming an Altra company is its adoption of the group's platform of proven business tools and techniques for lean manufacturing. Starting with a 5S programme to bring sustained order and efficiency to the workplace, the initiative includes process improvement through kaizen, value-stream mapping, set-up reduction and Six Sigma quality controls. Within a couple of months the results can already be measured in a reduction in lead times and improved quality, both of which benefit customers directly, as well as generation of less waste material and greater operational efficiency.

The 5Ss are strategies to Simplify, Straighten, Scrub the workplace and then, Stabilise and Sustain the maximum level of cleanliness and organisation. This programme is being systematically applied to all areas of the Huco Dynatork business with progress being audited weekly.

David Lockett, joint managing director, says: "Everyone is involved and it is certainly contributing to greater job satisfaction for our employees. It encourages ideas and feedback and we are already acting on a call from the shopfloor for greater commitment to recycling."

Huco Dynatork has also found that the 5S strategy is feeding directly into its ISO 9001 framework. Julian Green, Director of Manufacturing, states: "In truth we were struggling to provide measurable improvements for our annual ISO audit but 5S has rectified that. This also provides an excellent foundation for us to enhance the business with other operational strategies to improve product development, production planning and work flow."

David Lockett concludes: "In addition to improving the manufacturing efficiency of our own motion control products, we have also secured new business opportunities. Our skills in making small components have been recognised by other group companies and we are now making components for other Altra companies."

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