Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center
Savings Flow from New Manufacturing Cell
Humanetics Precision Metal Works manufactures hardware for a diverse group of industries including: cellular, telecom, satellite, communications, banking, printing, power supply, postal automation, airport automation, semi-conductor, ATM, defense, aerospace, computer, and medical, and many others. Humanetics offers a broad range of services to support business solutions from online inquiries and total supply chain management to integrated prototyping, concurrent engineering and assemblies. The company employs 60 people at its facility in McAllen, Texas.
Humanetics realized that some of their metal fabrication processes were taking too long. They had a lot of inventory, and lead time for one of their core processes was five days. The company contacted the Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center (TMAC), a NIST MEP network affiliate, for help.
TMAC provided Lean Enterprise training for 12 Humanetics shop supervisors and managers. Humanetics staff learned how to use Value Stream Mapping, 5S (Sort, Set in Order, Shine, standardize, Sustain), and Cell/Flow through simulations and on-site observations and changes. They applied these and other Lean tools to different production areas. Class time on the plant floor resulted in spaghetti diagrams that revealed the actual movements of workers and of materials that become parts for healthcare, automotive, and electrical industries. As a result of TMAC’s assistance, processes at Humanetics now involve working in a cell, and specific departments have been eliminated. In a team effort, managers and supervisors along with TMAC staff planned the cell layout, assigned resources, made the appropriate changes, ran a pilot, trained operators, and started working in a better and more efficient way.
- Reduced lead time from 5 days to 1 day.
- Increased productivity by 23 percent.
- Reduced work in process by approximately 833 units/month.
- Reduced defects by 75 percent.
“We have increased our productivity on an average of 23 percent using Lean principles.”
Joe Haynes , General Manager