Recently, a group of three Bradley University engineering students conducted a lean assessment for the auto-bagging system. The three students; Lauren Boden, Holly Korte, and Adam Heintzman met with their professor Joseph Chen at the Peoria Production Shop facility.

The team of students gathered data regarding the current process used at the facility. The process begins with receiving, goes through sorting, then to several bagging and picking. The products are then packaged and ready to be shipped out.

The students created a process flow and a process chart for the multi-bagging area. After many calculations and analyses, the team concluded there are some areas for improvement. For instance, there is an over processing of waste. During downtime, waste accumulates in the bagging areas. The students recommended a redistribution of workers when waiting.

Another issue the students discovered is the long changeover time between parts on the automatic machines. The students suggested reducing the guess and check method to speed up the processes.

Likewise, they found that there was extra movement around cupping and bagging which could potentially result in damage to the products. They recommended the two areas be combined into one cell to reduce the movement.

All in all, the Bradley engineering students proposed a Kanban system floor plan. Each area of proposed solutions would provide the company with around $98,000 in savings.

Peoria Production Shop is looking into the areas mentioned above and will act accordingly. Additionally, PPS is a company who strives to find solutions for clients so we are thankful that a local university is interested in providing services and continuing to educate students.

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