Lean isn’t just a series of boxes to check, it’s a way of life from how we interact with each other and our clients, to how we schedule and work on projects and our ever enduring drive for continuous improvement. It’s ingrained in everything we do. It’s a system built for people who, like us, are problem solvers looking for a better way to build, collaborate, and work together.
We certify all of our field leaders, project managers, and associate project managers through the Lean Leadership Institute with green and yellow belt training.
Our project teams are staffed with leaders versed in P4 Planning, Last Planner, 8 Waste Elimination and the 5S system all designed to create efficiencies, eliminate waste, and make reliable commitments to our customer you can take to the bank.
This first step is really about mapping out the milestones to align everyone in the room around key deliverables, dates, and conditions of satisfaction. This way everyone on the team is on the same page, working towards the same goal.
For this, we tend to use sticky notes. It may sound weird, but the sticky notes serve as a visual representation of the process. It gets people talking through the process, making sure everyone sees it the same way.
Often referred to as Takt & Flow. Put simply, it is the flow of work between floors, rooms, and common areas among each trade.
Based on the order work needs to occur in, we work with other trade partners to map out the process of work. Once that flow is identified, we can work together to determine the sequence of installation and hand-offs between each trade to maximize efficiency and flow throughout the project life cycle.
The Prepare phase is where the planning for the installation begins. This step takes the P1 – Process step and the P2 – Pace step deeper mapping out each room/phase as identified in the Takt & Flow plan step-by-step in six-week increments as it relates to the milestones identified in the P1 – Process step.
This step is often referred to as The Last Planner System. This is a great way to collaborate among different divisions, teams and trade partners. This process requires trade experts to break down and explain in detail the steps involved in each phase of the project.
This level of communication opens discussions for continuous improvement during the install process as well as identifies potential bottlenecks so we can create an alternative plan to keep us on schedule should they happen.
The 4th P – Perform – centers around Conditions of Satisfaction for the project. In this phase we clearly identify the items required to know when each phase in our plan can be marked as 100% finished. This steps aligns expectations with our Clients so there is no question regarding what the Client expects and what we deliver.
With P4 Planning we’ve seen improvements of 10% or more on our process efficiency, our time it takes on-site to get work done, and how many people we need to do the work. Better planning means we’re able to deliver:
No Lean journey should be about change for the sake of change – it’s about improving upon proven methodology for the betterment of businesses and clients. And the most efficient way to make this happen is through the use of data and metrics to see real change and continuous improvement.
We create standard of work that are continually tracked and measured to make sure any process changes are for the better – creating gains and not deficiencies.
When we start planning earlier in the process and use Lean systems and tools we yield a return on that – better efficiency, reduced waste, and alignment on expectations and work ultimately resulting in safer projects because of it.
- Perry Thompson, Executive Lean Director
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