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Case Studies

Battery Manufacturer Cuts Rework by 74% With Production Planning and Upskilling

July 6, 2023 | Operational Excellence

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The client is a wholly owned subsidiary of one of the largest power electronics and telecommunications groups in Southern Africa. Its core business includes the manufacture and distribution of batteries, DC power systems, cable and cable accessories, transformers, including electrical accessories and lighting technology.

The Challenge

The client engaged Renoir to help identify key areas for improvement, evaluate its existing system controls, and assess its overall supervisory and managerial effectiveness.

Key Results

By week 18:

↓ 74%

Total rework

↑ 34%

Batteries produced per FTE


Active management behaviour (AMB) scores

↓ 56%

Production scrap


The analysis began with Renoir’s Focus Process®, an initial assessment where the Renoir team observed the client’s:

  1. Existing capacity management and production planning indicators and processes
  2. Overall management control system gaps
  3. Ownership by production of quality
  4. Communication interfaces between functions
  5. Quality assurance within the Charge Room
  6. Clarity of roles and its workforce skills base
  7. Time utilization by activity
  8. Shift handover effectiveness
  9. Gaps in KPIs

Once this process was complete, Renoir committed to an improvement in the client’s charge room production of 35% and a quality indicator improvement of 20% within 18 weeks.

“The Renoir type of project brings people back to structured approaches, thinking things through and placing emphasis on the real problems associated with the core issues hampering the end results.”

Chief Operating Officer


The project focused on defining, developing, and installing solutions to improve each of the following areas:

Management Control System (MCS) and production planning and scheduling process 

A quality indicator recording, reporting and analysis system was developed for electronic production, as well as associated shift controls and visual capacity management boards. By expanding these systems and controls, gaps in reporting, production planning and scheduling could be clearly pinpointed. The Focus Process® also revealed significant gaps in the availability of key quality indicators, variance from plan, scrap, seconds, rework, capacity utilization, downtime, battery charge cycle time data and information.

Communication, skills and behaviours

For skill gaps identified during the Focus Process®, training material was developed on the shop floor along with classroom training, which was conducted over 10 weeks. Covering 30 different topics, the training included sessions to improve the behavioural alignment of supervisors to the new MCS requirements. An active management behaviour assessment, training and coaching process was installed during the installation phase of the project. To improve visibility and understanding, numerous displays of the work area, the charge process, charge profiles, shop floor visual aids and performance indicator boards were developed.

Continuity, continuous improvement and sustainability of project deliverables

A System attainment assessment and reporting tool was installed to track progress on MCS compliance, understanding and usage. A repository was created of all project templates and models while a structured handover was conducted to ensure client continuation and improvement. A prioritised improvement plan was compiled for driving improvements beyond the project targets and closure date.


Improvement in production, measured by the average number of batteries produced, increased consistently every month from the start of the project:

By week 10 of the project, average daily production of batteries increased by 32% compared with the stretched baseline and by week 18 the variance from plan had decreased by more than 40% since the project start.

By week 18:

Total rework decreased 74%

Batteries per FTE also increased by 34%

Active management behaviour (AMB) scores increased by 345% through on the floor, one on one coaching

Scrap and second rates reduced significantly over the project duration to 0.09 % and 0.18 % respectively

“I would like to thank the Renoir Team for their contribution to the turnaround of the Battery Machine Lines. The tools used were the best I’ve seen used. The implementation plan had clear direction.”

Factory Manager for Battery Machine Line

Other capabilities and improvements installed included:

  1. Leading quality indicator tracking and reporting controls for 15 variables published within 5 minutes of the end of any shift
  2. A visual management board of 82 charging baths and capacity utilization by battery type, hour and bath
  3. Installation of a structured shift handover and supervisor coaching and assessment process
  4. Development, measurement and reporting of new defect and rework indicators
  5. Standardised production planning using average charge time to more accurately determine capacity loading

Find out how a comprehensive Management Control System can improve and sustain your organization’s processes.

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