To remain competitive in the market, chemical companies must focus on driving better productivity. Increased productivity can help these companies achieve cost efficiencies, which can translate into higher profit margins and better returns on investment.
Improving productivity in the chemical industry can also lead to better innovation. By investing in research and development and adopting new technologies, chemical companies can develop new products that are more efficient, sustainable, and cost-effective. Moreover, increased productivity can lead to more consistent product quality, which is essential in maintaining customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Our client is a world leading chemical company, who operate an engineering plastic compounding plant that produces compounded polymer pellets to meet the demanding requirements of specific industries, such as automotive, aerospace, and electronics.
The Client required an analysis to evaluate its current production, maintenance, and quality systems and processes due to evolving demands for increased output, improved quality, and reduced costs. To meet this requirement, Renoir was engaged to conduct the assessment. Along with the processes and systems, the analysis also examined the culture and behaviours of the organisation.
The analysis showed that significant and measurable benefits could be obtained through the organizational elements mentioned above. Subsequently, an implementation project was planned and agreed upon to achieve sustainable improvements in performance.
The key objective of the project was to achieve behavioural change across all levels within the organisation to ensure more efficient management and control of the business in Production, Maintenance and Quality, thereby increasing overall Operational Efficiency.
The focus of the Project was on improving:
- Alignment of the organisation – RACI, KPI’s, clear Roles & Responsibilities and setting Objectives.
- Integrated planning – Better Planning, Driving Productivity.
- Performance management- Structured Reviews of KPI’s & Effective meetings
Proactively managing processes to ensure maximum production stability and increased availability was a critical aspect of success. Working at all levels of the organisation, the Team set about to agree the key operating parameters, defining revised targets, and establishing clear roles, responsibilities, and process changes to ensure that targets were achieved.
The roadmap was refined by the Task Force, MAT members and Renoir consultants. This laid the foundation for disciplined project management, which included agreed baseline evaluations, so that progress could be measured against them.
“When we started the project, it was a bit like starting to exercise for a Marathon… especially for those who have not exercised in such a manner. Our muscles will surely ache and we discover that we had muscles in places that we didn’t know existed! And that is the process of discovery, of learning and of taking action to improve. ‘One Team, One Goal’ has now become our mantra to drive Business Results improvement continuously.”
Operations Director – Asia
Renoir’s Focus Process® initiated the Project and following two key stages of Design and Development, teams commenced implementing the required changes to business processes and management control systems.
To realise the benefits, changes were made in the following areas:
• Master Production Scheduling
• Production Losses Reporting – Capturing accurate information and utilisation of better decision making tools.
• Shop Floor Control System – Implementing Short Interval Control mechanisms relating to process KPIs.
• Active Supervision – Instilling a ‘Management By Walkabout’ culture.
• Product Changeover Control – Implementing ‘pitstop’ planning and execution control systems to reduce delays and wasted effort, thereby reducing product changeover times.
• 5S Effectiveness – Engendering ownership of key production equipment, improving supervision and improving the auditing of procedures.
• Reliability Centred Maintenance/Risk Based Maintenance – Embedding FMEA techniques and verifying preventative and condition-based maintenance requirements.
• Maintenance Planning – Strengthening job scoping (parts, equipment, labour), scheduling and resourcing.
• Maintenance Productivity – Developing ‘pitstop’ planning and execution and ‘Management By Walkabout’ to reduce delays and wasted effort, thereby improving maintenance responsiveness and equipment reliability/availability.
• Quality System Effectiveness – Improving supervision and auditing of procedures.
• Process Control Standards – To help improve the output quality and consistency by identifying and controlling variations in the process.
• Quality & Production – To drive improved process capability.
• Structured Root Cause Analysis (RCA) – Implementation and adoption of the DMAIC Methodology.
“ Renoir has played an integral role and through their unique approach, simple to understand and implementable solutions have enabled us to achieve a 15% improvement in a short time frame.
This improvement has been achieved through Renoir’s ability to drive behavioural change, which is clearly evident within the organisation. ”
Senior Vice President, Asia Pacific
The case study of our client, a leading chemical company, highlights the importance of investing in improving production, maintenance, and quality systems and processes. Including the critical importance of the behavioural aspect of achieving sustainable change.
The analysis conducted by Renoir identified the need for behavioural change at all levels of the organisation to achieve sustainable improvements in performance. The implementation of the Focus Process® resulted in significant and measurable benefits, including a 15% OEE improvement in a short time frame.
The success of this project demonstrates that the key to achieving sustainable improvements in performance lies in focusing on organisational alignment, integrated planning, and performance management.
The implementation of process changes, such as active supervision, pitstop planning and execution, and structured root cause analysis, contributed to improved efficiency and reduced costs. Furthermore, the adoption of FMEA techniques and verifying preventative and condition-based maintenance requirements led to improved maintenance responsiveness and equipment reliability/availability.
Ultimately, the success of this project has enabled our client to remain competitive in the market and achieve better returns on investment while maintaining product quality, and thus customer satisfaction and loyalty.