Lean training puts railway wheel manufacturer on the right track to savings

Posted on 17 Feb 2012 by Tim Brown

A leading railway wheel manufacturer has managed to achieve cost savings of 20% and increase its output by up to 25% thanks to a training programme delivered by The Manufacturing Institute.

Trafford Park-based firm Lucchini UK enrolled their employees to undertake the Institute’s Accelerated Route to Lean Manufacturing (ARTL) course, which focuses on eliminating waste and driving up efficiency across the manufacturing process.

Coached and mentored by practitioners from The Manufacturing Institute, Lucchini’s team of 30 people were able to put their newly-gained knowledge into practice by delivering fifteen individual improvement projects for the business, spanning production, quality and supply chain.

Successful measures included increasing the flow of materials on the wheelset assembly line, tackling bottlenecks and creating a new and efficient replenishment system to assist operators in tracking spare parts. Key to this success was the company’s development of a cultural training programme, merging lean tools with ongoing employee development.

The programme proved to be so successful that 25 employees were recently awarded The Manufacturing Institute’s Lean Manufacturing Fellowship in recognition of their results.

The training complements the company’s Lukomotion scheme, a programme which aims to help Lucchini become world-class by targeting five key drivers of safe working, people, elimination of waste, quality and the environment.

“Our Lukomotion programme is about excellence in all we do, improving our business but also our lives and the industry in which we work,” said Chris Fawdry, Managing Director of Lucchini UK. “That’s why I’m so proud of the team who have taken up the challenge of the Accelerated Route to Lean programme. The results we’ve achieved are fantastic for our employees who have worked so hard and who are the real pathfinders for the future success of our business.

“I’d like to thank The Manufacturing Institute for their imagination and efforts in helping us on this journey. I want to see continued benefits for our business so I’m pleased to say that we’re already starting to look at our next group of students for the ARTL programme.”

To date, the Accelerated Route to Lean Manufacturing course has helped over 600 manufacturing professionals create millions of pounds worth of productivity improvements for their businesses.