Increased productivity and cost savings

Ralf  Skovmand

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Increased productivity and cost savings

A hundred improvements implemented. Total savings of EUR 40,000 a year. Increased productivity combined with a dramatic reduction in turnaround time. These are the results so far of a Lean project at Senmatic A/S, a company which produces advanced electronic products and sensors for among other things temperature measurement.

Senmatic A/S in Odense uses Lean to boost their competitive edge on the tough OEM sensor market. To start with the company’s almost 150 employees received help from the Danish Technological Institute’s Lean experts to use tools such as 5S, order and systematics as well as whiteboard meetings aimed at continuous improvement. The company is by no means finished with using Lean.

- Producing sensors has now almost become a sport. In the beginning there was a somewhat sceptical attitude towards Lean, but after a couple of weeks the picture changed completely. Today we can see the difference even in our own physical well-being, explains co-ordinator Inge-Lise Neesen.

She and her colleagues greatly appreciate the fact that it has become much easier to carry out the production work. Before, employees moved the different sensors round backwards and forwards across the production area. Today the individual employee has a much better overview of the production process and wastes less time on transport thanks to the so-called U-cells, named after the workplaces being arranged in a U-shape. These cells make it possible to reduce handling time and the amount of internal transport necessary.

- It’s important for the motivation of the employees that they feel they can make a difference by becoming involved and taking an active part in the practical improvements in the work processes, says Mona Andersen from Senmatic A/S. Her experience is that all employees are willing to put a lot of effort into their work and therefore need to see actual production figures in order to know how production is going.