|Nampak Bevcan produces aluminium and tinplate beverage cans in various shapes and sizes for a range of beverages, including alcoholic beverages, carbonated soft drinks, fruit juices, energy drinks, vegetable juices and ice teas. Its Rosslyn, Pretoria plant in South Africa has three can-making lines, two of which recently converted from steel to aluminium with one being a food can line. As a result of the line conversion, spoilage levels and machine utilisation were below expectation. The divisional level decided to implement TRACC, and improvements were seen within a few months.|
The Rosslyn, Pretoria plant’s steel to aluminium line conversion had a few glitches which showed in their two main KPIs — spoilage and effective machine utilisation (EMU). At the time of the TRACC team’s intervention, EMU was at a modest 61% and spoilage (the percentage of cans spoiled from the total number of cans that could be made based on the input of the aluminium) was at 6%. The total number of cans produced was 62.5 million.
Engagement levels were low, with little to no accountability at almost every level, targets weren’t met, machine failures were rife and maintenance was in constant firefighting mode. In addition, the market was flat with added pressure from a competitor that had entered the market a few months earlier.
The decision to implement TRACC was taken at divisional level with an urgency to stabilise the environment in terms of:
- Spoilage and increased throughput
- Goal and KPI alignment
- Improved communication channels
The TRACC implementation team opted for a standard foundation implementation, their first objective being to establish a ‘common language’ on site by ensuring everyone understood the principles of WCM. The improvement journey started with the Leading and Managing Change TRACC, followed by 5S, Focused Improvement, Visual Management and Teamwork.
History has shown that if there isn’t full buy-in and a well-grounded understanding of WCM, it will be difficult to get the right results. Team structures were therefore adjusted to align with WCM organisational design principles. This ensured clear roles and responsibilities, and the right multidisciplinary teams focusing on the right issues at the right level.
If there isn’t full buy-in and a well-grounded understanding of WCM, it will be difficult to get the right results.
During the roll-out period, a senior TRACC specialist was on site three days a week ensuring that the various implementation structures were focusing on the right issues and asking the right questions. The daily operational review meeting was one of the main focus areas. Visual management — and understanding and reading the trends — played a vital role in establishing a problem-solving culture.
The improvement journey is now well understood at can-maker level, and employees are keen to engage in conversation and explain what they’re busy with. Meeting structures, roles and responsibilities were clarified as part of the organisational design work, which contributed significantly to getting employees out of firefighting mode.
EMU stabilised in the first few months, after which it increased steadily in the seven months that followed. New targets for the two lines have now been set at 10% to 18% higher than the stabilised number.
Volumes have increased and the site reported a healthy peak period, which enabled it to shut the lines over the end-of-year festive season to allow the teams a few days off. Since then, the site has reported a strong overall performance, including efficiency gains, reduction in spoilage levels (down to 4%), and a world class safety record. A healthy ROI well in excess of 500% was reported against the cost of the implementation. The plant is currently in the process of implementing the Quality and Focused Improvement TRACCs.
The site reported a healthy peak period, which enabled it to shut the lines over the end-of-year festive season.
|Nampak is Africa’s leading diversified packaging manufacturer, and has been listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange for 48 years. Nampak Bevcan is part of the Metals division and produces aluminium and tinplate beverage cans for a broad range of consumer drinks. The beverage can facilities are based in South Africa, Angola and Nigeria, where Nampak enjoys first or early mover advantage.|
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