The freight car manufacturing facilities of the UWC Rail Group have assessed the implementation of projects to improve the efficiency of their production and administrative processes in 2021. The resulting economic effect exceeded RUB 29 million. A total of 349 kaizen proposals and 5 A3 projects were brought to life last year. The authors of the implemented rationalisation ideas were remunerated with over RUB 700,000.
As a result, productivity grew by 33% for shot-blasting machines in the cutting and heat treatment shops, and by 5% for CNC centers in the pattern shop. Rebalancing the operations and implementing their optimal sequence with no time losses lead to a 6% increase in output per worker in the two freight car-welding shops, while also improving the finished product’s quality. A complex review allowed to reduce motion waste for machinery and workers by more than 870 km per year.
In 2021, above 2 thousand employees of the freight car building facilities were trained to apply production system tools.
The UWC’s production system is subject to constant improvement. Over the years of its operation, more than 3,000 kaizen proposals and 56 A3 projects have been implemented at the Tikhvin Industrial Site. The total effect of all projects to improve the efficiency of production processes exceeded RUB 426 million.
Proven tools, including the 5C system1, value stream mapping2, Standardised Work Methodology for assessing workforce load3, Yamazumi diagram4, KIT containers5, Kaizen6, A3 project7, etc., are being implemented as part of the UWC production system.
Maxim Kovalev, Head of Production System Development at JSC TVSZ, said, “At the moment, the main task of the production system development is to fulfil the plan for the implementation of projects to optimize the key product flows developed jointly with the Railcar Production Division. The focus remains on engaging all staff in a system of continuous improvement in both the production units and the auxiliary divisions.”
1The 5C system is a system of rational workplace organisation aimed at reducing accidents, improving product quality and increasing productivity. It is based on 5 principles: sort, keep order, keep clean, standardise, and improve.
2A value flow map (mapping) is a tool to visualise and analyse the material and information flows in the course of value creation from supplier to customer.
3The Standardised Work Methodology assesses employee workload and determines the best sequence of operations. Implementing this tool means that the worker is observed, losses are eliminated, and the best sequence of operations is determined to be applied then as a standard.
4The Yamazumi diagram (line balancing) is used to analyse the workload of workers performing a specific sequence of operations in a process chain.
5KIT containers are specialized containers used to reduce the storage space and logistical movements of inventory arriving at workplaces.
6Kaizen proposals are aimed at improving the current production and administrative processes of a company, the implementation of which is not costly.
7A3 projects are aimed at reducing the costs of enterprises and obtaining significant improvements that bring economic benefits.