In the enviable position of experiencing an increased demand for specialized cutting tools, RobbJack (www.robbjack.com) of Lincoln is relying on employee innovation to increase capacity. Teams are looking at the 40-year-old precision cutting tool company’s processes and suggesting ways to improve productivity and quality as well as reduce waste. According to Dave Baker, president, the company is seeing results.
“It started on the shop floor where we cut machine change-over time from 90 to 30 minutes, saving 18 hours per day,” explained Baker. “Then process improvement spread to other departments.
“Through the CACT training, we learned more effective ways to track occurrences that waste resources and then pinpoint the problem,” said Baker. Teams collect data, write a problem statement and set measurable improvement goals. “When teams visually map out every step in the process, and measure the time required for each step, inefficiencies become apparent,” said Baker. “Then it is easy to question the current steps and make changes that often yield immediate results.”
The company posts progress boards throughout the building tabulating teams’ on-going success. “Boards are visually inspected monthly and employees earn quarterly monetary incentives for making progress,” said Baker.
“We are making significant changes to our business as a direct result of the Sierra College CACT process improvement training,” said Baker. “Not only does Jes Vargas guide us through examining the way we work but he has a ton of tools, charts and methods to keep us on track.”