Quality Is Our Operating Model, not a Shop Floor Mantra
Lots of companies talk about having quality products or services, but few extend quality into every aspect of their operations.
At Metcam, we strive to build quality into everything we do—not just what we fabricate or assemble.
The best way to function at peak efficiency, with minimal wasted materials and effort, is to streamline every single operation. That is our guiding vision. In meeting the goals that come with that vision, we also generate positive outcomes for our organization while maximizing benefits for our customers.
Sweeping Approach; Targeted Action
“Quality everywhere” is a pretty lofty goal. To meet it, we have developed or adopted numerous detailed programs. Some are shop-floor specific; others extend across the entire company. Most of them revolve around four key objectives:
- Achieve a zero error rate in every aspect of the business, from the plant floor to the billing and shipping departments.
- Implement quality-focused activities that include operator self-inspection, employee-led process improvement initiatives, and other efforts that continually advance our goals.
- Monitor quality metrics at all levels of the organization and feed that information back to personnel so they can take corrective action.
- Never stop looking for ways to improve even more.
Making “Good Change”
In early 2014, Metcam embarked on a major Kaizen initiative. Kaizen, which literally means “good change” in Japanese, is a program for systematic improvement that has increased quality, throughput and sustainability throughout our operation. Many of our early initiatives were directed towards the shop floor, but our long-term goals are to use Kaizen to improve every area of the business—and to have every single employee participate. Involving employees gives us a better perspective on what improvements make the most sense, which in turn fosters a better outcome. More importantly, it increases their thirst for quality.
We eventually plan to involve every employee—and every process—in a Kaizen project.
A Journey. Not a Sprint.
Kaizen is the most recent of our quality projects, but it’s not the only one that netted big benefits.
- Video work instructions increased accuracy while eliminated language and training barriers.
- Converting customer-supplied diagrams to standardized measurements helped shop workers interpret them.
- Cross training personnel increased line flexibility; reducing production times.
We are proud of what we have achieved in our journey to excellence, and we are excited about what the future holds. We invite you to contact us and discover that excitement, as well.