For the past year, the five reconfigured major production work areas, called PODs, have been laid out with open aisleways, improved daytime lighting fixtures and greater accessibility for materials. The project takes advantage of space left behind by the Drivetrain Divisions (Transmission and Differential) when they moved to Power Drive last year.
Weinzapfel said the process of driving improvement in production has really happened over the last 3-4 years, with a lot of workshop activities and LEAN manufacturing methodologies in those areas. “What we lacked was the floor space to really configure a layout that was conducive to support the changes we were making,” he said. “We’ve driven a lot of improvement in setting standards, making tools available to the operator and having visuals in place for inventory control,” added Weinzapfel. “By making these layout changes, it’s opened up the floor space, allowing the operator a more visual work environment. It’s allowing a Team Leader to effectively lead his team and provide support to the operators who are working in the PODs.”