Case studies are always the best way to show if you know what you are talking about. They clearly demonstrate the logic was used, the tools were selected and deployed, how thorough the investigation was and nevertheless whether the client was happy with the outcome.

On this page we are sharing 3 case studies from our practices. We could have shared a lot more however we thought these 3 represent a wide variety of issues and tools and demonstrate well our expertise in quality, environmental and health and safety improvement projects.

If you are still not convinced, please get in touch so that we can share case studies more related to you and your business.

Case Study #1

Blue-Chip Precision Engineering Manufacturer in Devon, UK


Client requirements

Approached by recommendation to a client who has multiple UK manufacturing locations which were individually certified against various different management system standards and would not work together. It would have been beyond the available resources of the client and very inefficient to maintain oil and gas end users required certificates this way. Also with the need to upgrade a number of disparate systems to the latest ISO 9001 and 14001 standards by September 2018 the client urgently needed external assistance.


Approach

Initially various auditing techniques and tools were used, including face to face interviews, desktop reviews, process reviews, etc., to investigate how the individual systems could work better together and at the same time how to upgrade them to comply with new ISO standards.

Hoshin methodology was used to connect proposed solutions to the client’s needs and then transformed into a major project plan containing key milestones, with smart objectives. The objectives then were linked up with actions and responsible persons and deadlines. Duplicated, but dissimilar processes were identified between the multi sites and management systems such as internal auditing, management review, corrective and preventative actions, document and record control, etc. could more easily be standardised and shared, enabling a much more efficient operation with significantly less resources. Also a new tool was used to capture process requirements. The Turtle diagram was proposed as the way forward.


The proposed solution

The solution proposed to the customer was to create a division wide Integrated Management System (IMS) with a single multi-site certification. The advantages are that multiple ISO standards can be satisfied with one set of documentation, shared best practices and common language amongst manufacturing locations, significantly reduced certification costs due to single certification, multi-skilled divisional quality and environmental teams could carry out shared processes hence significantly more efficient processes and reduced labor cost. Verified financial savings have been calculated and shared. The new IMS has created clarity at a Divisional level and enabled standardization with the buy-in of all of the sites to the much improved future of the business.


Client statement

Divisional Quality and EHS Manager commented for the client (Source: Improved Ways Limited website):


“It has been my pleasure to have used the services of Improved Ways Limited for several months now. Balazs Bagi has shown his expertise, experience, patience, professionalism and talent to us time and time again; he has generated a full design and implementation plan for the upgrade of our systems to the 2015 ISO standards. As well as this, he has designed a fully integrated system (ISO 9001 & 14001) and trained our personnel on the changes, expectations and requirements. This has saved us many man hours, helped reduce running costs and given us a great start in the new systems. If you need help with the upgrade / integration of your ISO systems and trainings, then I can wholeheartedly recommend him." 

Case Study #2

Blue-Chip Precision Engineering Manufacturer in Devon, UK


Client requirements

Employed by a blue-chip precision engineering manufacturer as a Division Quality and EHS Manager at that time when the business was on a double-digit growth curve and really needed to rely on a well-established supply chain. New suppliers were selected and approved, first article inspections were carried out and samples were approved. It went like a textbook exercise till the first shipments arrived and then it was apparent that newly recruited suppliers were not able to produce high quality parts consistently.


Approach

In the investigation phase the following approaches were made. Top 10 worst performing suppliers were identified based on rejection and supplied value data and were called to a meeting where they were confronted with their bad performance and the impact this was having on the business. They were then asked to participate in a newly developed programme, called Approved Supplier Champion Programme.


The proposed solution

The programme was put to the suppliers was developed to create a mutually beneficial relationship. Suppliers were asked to nominate / employ a person who then was trained by the business. The training included basic quality class room trainings such as basic quality tools, YOSHI, product and process auditing, basic statistical process control, process FMEA, spending time in the manufacturing area the supplier supplied product to, measurement techniques, customer quality expectations. The suppliers were trained and then asked to implement these techniques and systems at base. They were then visited to provide support with their challenges. When they were ready with the implementation then were audited, and signed off as customer approved supplier champions and became quality and product experts and were often promoted into quality manager positions.

The programme was so successful that the business was able to increase the number of dock to stock part numbers by 51%. Supplier rejection key performance indicator (SRPPM) was improved by 89%. Cost of incoming inspection was reduced by 100%. On time delivery was also improved as a result of supplier quality error eradication. The programme was adopted by sister divisions and other operating groups.


Client statement

Group Lean and Quality Director commented for the client:


“Balazs has done a phenomenal job with the supplier champions and their management teams. Most of these suppliers benefited from the programme through attracting new customers and growing their base businesses. I asked Balazs to develop a best practice presentation with live examples and that was shared later on with other operating groups in the Corporation. Many of them decided later on to adopt the program and enjoyed similar successes.”

Case Study #3

Blue-Chip Precision Engineering Manufacturer in Devon, UK


Client requirements

Employed by a blue-chip precision engineering manufacturer as a Division Quality and EHS Manager, one of the major tasks I had to do is to increase customer satisfaction and mitigate health and safety risks. The task was about to proactively reduce the quality and safety risks in the processes before they turned into issues and make them more robust his way rather than looking at customer complaints and incidents and accidents reactively. Take care of the process and the process will take care of itself.


Approach

In the investigation phase I created a vision to minimize quality and health and safety risks by 100% over a period of 8 months. The selected problem solving technique was A3 methodology. The methodology starts with having a sponsor and an owner and formulating a multifunctional team. When the project organisation was established then a good problem statement was needed. A good problem statement means that the problem is 50% solved because everyone understands what needs to be done. In the grasping the situation phase key process performance data was collected and analysed and turned into good understanding. Then various root cause analysis techniques were deployed such as Ishikawa diagram, 5 why analysis. In the next phase, actions were recommended by the multifunctional teams. To get maximum impact in the shortest possible time low hanging fruit matrix was used to prioritize actions. In the action planning phase action owners were identified and asked for their support.


The proposed solution

One of the major actions were proposed for both quality and health and safety performance improvement amongst others is to develop a quality and further develop a health and safety near miss reporting system.

Near miss is a well-known definition in health and safety however in quality terms this is pretty unique. The solution was to design a quality near miss system and implement.

On the health and safety side the system was already in place so the challenge was how to re energize it. I designed a communication campaign and that included various different type of communications from the weekly safety message through health and safety toolbox talks and recruitment of health and safety star point owners. The health and safety star point owners were recruited on a voluntary basis for each natural working cell and their task was to spread the message about near miss reporting.

On the quality front I had to oversee the implementation of a quality near miss reporting system. That included recruiting quality star point owners to support the system. And the bedding in again on a voluntary basis. In the end after 6 month operating the system the client was able to reduce the number of external customer complaints by 41% and the number of internal customer complaints by 39%.

On the health and safety side the number of near misses were raised by 64% and that resulted a 0.5 recordable accident rate per average number of employee (rolling 12 months' measurement) and that is considered world class.


Client statement

Instrumentation Sales Manager commented for the client (Source: LinkedIn):


“I wrote this recommendation for Balazs Bagi when he was working for Parker Hannifin Manufacturing Ltd as a Division QEHS Manager. At that time, I was a key account manager for the Corporation's Italian Sales Company and could rely on Balazs's excellent support with regards to customer quality complaints. He was always there for me when I needed him even if it was out of office hours. His communication skills and professionalism helped a lot not only to turn sticky situations around but to emerge from them even stronger, which is a pretty unique skill set. My customers were also very happy with his performance. When I had to submit sales bids Balazs was again there for me to ensure that any quality related documentation was ready to send to the customer on time. I strongly recommend him and wish him good luck with his new venture. I was sad to see him leaving however can understand his ambitions and I am sure that he will be very successful running his own company and satisfying customers as it is his second nature. I was sad to see him leaving however can understand his ambitions and I am sure that he will be very successful running his own company and satisfying customers as it is his second nature.“

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