A summary of what Lean is, how it developed and why SIAT followed this path
In the 1950s, Toyota produced in one year what General Motors produced in one day.
In 2007, Toyota overtook General Motors to become the world’s leading manufacturer of passenger cars.
In his book “Toyota Production System: Beyond Large Scale Production”, Taiichi Ohno describes how he developed such a system, and what is the philosophy that guided it.
One of the major problems he identified in Toyota was the low productivity, about one-ninth of that of the United States, and so Taiichi Ohno went to visit some factories in the United States and found that the productivity surplus was not due to a higher degree of automation, or the fact that U.S. workers were moving much faster than the Japanese one, but that in Japan there were many activities that were not useful for the realization of the product itself.
Continuing their study of the Toyota, Womack and Jones in their book “The machine that changed the world” they then presented the principles that are still considered the basis of the system
and that serve as a guide for its implementation through specific methodologies and specific techniques.
Since 2015 Siat has undertaken a lean methodology for production and in recent years has significantly decreased unnecessary activities, building a leaner process and in continuous improvement, increasing considerably production efficiency.
Introducing the ANDON
To monitor the flow and to eliminate the causes that interrupt it, the Andon system has been introduced in the taping department, on the Fast Line.
The Andon is a Lean manufacturing tool used as part of the visual management to promote communication between department operators.
In fact, when production processes lack an appropriate communication system, the operator struggles to act promptly, increasing the reaction time to the occurrence of a problem.
The Andon system we have installed consists of a scoreboard that provides in real time, the information related to the progress of production, reporting the data of the daily production and the progressive in the month, compared to the targets planned.
The “smart” productions, in fact, are facilitated by the integration of the physical world and the possibility of sharing data and to be able to analyze them in subsequent phases, to take decisions with a view to continuous improvement.
The vertical warehouse
To improve forecasting, management flows and spaces in the taping machines department, it has been installed the first vertical warehouse in the history of SIAT.
This warehouse represents an innovative and fast storage solution, optimizing the operations of withdrawal and storage of small and medium components. Moreover, being equipped with a double bay, it allows to perform the activities of deposit and withdrawal at the same time, making more agile the work of the operators. The storage capacity, with as many as 100 drawers, allows to reduce considerably spaces, exploiting the capacity of this warehouse both vertically and horizontally.
But this is not all, in fact, the warehouse is connected to the SAP management system, allowing on the one hand the automatic recording of movements and a smooth management of safety stocks and reorder points and on the other hand allowing a screen display of the composition of the drawers optimizing their saturation.
This project, started a few weeks ago, has already brought tangible benefits, first making available 50 square meters of space, now destined to produce special machines. This initial phase of the project will be followed by others that will lead to the creation of other rationalizations possible also through this new tool, in the central warehouse area.
Thanks therefore to Roberto, Massimo, Elisabetta, Simone and Giovanni for the excellent work done and for the future innovations that we are sure they will bring to our SIAT.