The Improvement Hierarchy

The Improvement Hierarchy

Like Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs,” this paper proposes the existence of a business improvement hierarchy. The “Improvement Hierarchy” suggests that businesses must address fundamental system issues to sustain or even achieve improvement objectives.  Knowledge of the Improvement Hierarchy can suggest where an organization should start on their road to improvement.

Steel-rolling Mill Lubricant Selection

Steel-rolling Mill Lubricant Selection

The East Chicago, Ill., plant of the former Inland Steel Co. (now Ispat Inland) was considering changing the type of rolling mill lubricant used on a temper mill. Mill lubricants are critical to a variety of product and process characteristics in rolled product since they transmit the force of the mill rolls to the surface of the material being rolled, in this case varieties of steels. Rolling lubricants can affect mill reduction efficiencies and speeds, as well as the surface quality and roughness and metal fine generation.  This article shows how an analysis was done to select the new lubricant that saved over $70 million dollars. 

Performance Analysis for Process Improvement

Performance Analysis for Process Improvement

Process performance analysis, introduced here, uses performance measures such as Pp, Ppk, and Ppm with analysis to assess performance, sources of variation, process potential, and improvement opportunity. This analysis may be conducted where control may not have been achieved and where a large number of process streams exist.

Statistical Start-Up

In 1985, while working with IBM, General Motors, and Ford Motor Company, it was discovered that a significant need existed in industry. The requirement was a need for a disciplined, low cost approach to the successful installation of new equipment. In a number of cases when new equipment, lines, and plants were “started up” it took months or sometimes years (and in a few cases, never) for the installed systems to reach a projected or acceptable level of performance related to operational cost, reliability, maintainability, internal and/or customer quality and delivery requirements. Clearly, what was needed was a method that could be utilized to avoid these conditions, while at the same time minimizing the additional time or cost required for the design and installation process.

Flawless Equipment Start-Up

Flawless Equipment Start-Up

This paper proposes a methodology for starting up new equipment (also applicable to new products) to minimize problems typically associated with start-ups.

The reader will attain a fundamental understanding of how advanced quality planning and a statistics-based start-up strategy have been used successfully in industry to commission over $750 million worth of new and existing equipment over the last 15 years with vast reductions in the real costs of specifying, commissioning, and operating equipment.

Customer/Product Rationalization: CPR for Profitability

Customer/Product Rationalization: CPR for Profitability

Written by Jeffrey T. Luftig, Ph.D.

This is the second paper by Dr. Luftig, explaining how to use Total Asset Utilization and a cost allocation scheme to understand the true profitability of your products and/or services.

Total Asset Utilization (TAU): An Overview of a Productivity Metric for Profitability Enhancement and Focused Cost Reduction

Total Asset Utilization (TAU): An Overview of a Productivity Metric for Profitability Enhancement and Focused Cost Reduction

Written by Jeffrey T. Luftig, Ph.D.

This is a paper by Dr. Luftig on a method for measuring how well assets are used to generate salable product/services. It is the first step to understanding Customer / Product Rationalization.

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