Steel Structures2

Our Client is a fabricator of steel components, specializing in designing construction solutions and fabricating customized products.  They design and fabricate steel joists, steel decks, specialty decks, welded wide-flange shapes, metal claddings, joist girders, purlins and girts, building envelopes, structural steel components (roof, doors, and windows), and steel prefabricated building systems.

Project Overview
PVA's Response
The Results

Project Overview

Objectives

  • Improving throughput by 25-30% and reducing operating costs
  • Developing and implementing Management Operating Systems across all functional areas, including engineering and planning
  • Training and on-the-floor performance coaching of Managers and Supervisors to continually improve their processes
  • Improving productivity across all functional areas
  • Improving the coordination and communication between management and employees, and between different areas (engineering, planning, production and QA)
  • Providing better and more timely measurement metrics to identify and resolve opportunities
  • Improving overall quality and reducing rework in production

Assessment Findings

  • Excessive rework in production due to the quality of welds that had porosity due to incorrect welding techniques by the welders
  • Work documents and procedures on-the-shop-floor not well developed based on end-use customer requirements generating high levels of rejected work by QA
  • Fitters and welders asking other employees how to do their work and looking for direction
  • Inadequate flow of information coming from the drafting area resulted in employees working on pieces by experience because they have no drawings to refer to
  • Job estimates were based on historical data and had opportunity (lost time) built into them, yet they continued to be used for planning as well as pricing purposes
  • Feedback supplied from production with regard to the actual hours earned on current projects was not structured or linked to planning
  • Estimates were not always adjusted to reflect any added revisions made through the duration of the project
  • Kick-off meetings did not take place on a consistent basis causing misunderstandings with regard to requirements definition later in all parts of the process
  • In general, Supervisors did not communicate or follow-up on any expectations or objectives with regard to how long a task should take or how much volume should be completed within a given period of time
  • When the Supervisors were on-the-floor, they were “touring” their areas rather than being proactive with their people

PVA's Response

  • Designed and installed customized Management Operating Systems (MOS) across all areas to identify off-schedule conditions and develop appropriate corrective action plans
  • Provided training and on-the-job performance coaching with the Supervisors and Managers
  • Improved communication and follow-up of the daily planning and production processes
  • Developed and implemented an employee skills program to increase the quality of work in the welding operations
  • Fine-tuned and standardized the front end processes (sales, engineering, drafting, planning) to improve information flow, accuracy, and timeliness

The Results

Some significant results obtained by our Client included:

  • Improved planning was realized through optimizing floor capacity and labor requirements based on product specifications
  • Improvements in hours per ton for all estimated projects
  • Improvements in the quality and the flow of work between Engineering and Production
  • Increased the level of proactive supervisory behaviors from 0% to 40% by focusing on regular follow-up tours and communication with all personnel by the Supervisors
  • Improved the levels of throughput by more than 30% on average across all the areas
  • Improved the use of measurement and Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) at each operational level and integrated them within and across all of the functional areas

Supervisory Activities

Performance Efficiency

 

Long Term Work Continuation

  • Client Coordinators were trained and certified during the PVA engagement in each Plant
  • A quarterly audit program of the new Management Operating System has been developed for the Coordinators
  • PVA conducted audits over 18 months to ensure compliance to the continued utilization of the Management Operating Systems
  • These Audits resulted in recommendations and action plans to further identify additional opportunities for improving operations

Client Testimonials

"When we first met PVA, we were at the beginning of a productivity improvement program. Our management methods had to be reviewed and our work methods had to be analyzed and corrected. In an environment like ours change is not easily accepted.

After PVA did their initial audit of our process and demonstrated the relevance of making the proposed improvements, we met the PVA project team and were confident in their ability to work well with our people. In fact, this is exactly what occurred. Upon PVA's recommendation, a clear and open communication was then held with all our people, and I think that communication has been a key element of our success.

PVA knows how to combine the rigor of their system implementation with the constraints and requirements of daily production. The coaching required a lot of time from our supervisors and they knew how to manage that situation very successfully…

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Mario Bernard, Executive Vice President & Chief Manufacturing Officer, Canam

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"When we first met PVA, we were at the beginning of a productivity improvement program. Our management methods had to be reviewed and our work methods had to be analyzed and corrected. In an environment like ours change is not easily accepted.

After PVA did their initial audit of our process and demonstrated the relevance of making the proposed improvements, we met the PVA project team and were confident in their ability to work well with our people. In fact, this is exactly what occurred. Upon PVA's recommendation, a clear and open communication was then held with all our people, and I think that communication has been a key element of our success.

PVA knows how to combine the rigor of their system implementation with the constraints and requirements of daily production. The coaching required a lot of time from our supervisors and they knew how to manage that situation very successfully. Moreover, the implementation times were reduced because PVA communicated well and worked closely with our people, in order to involve them in the solutions.

Our financial expectations were met, and following their recommendation, we assigned someone to be responsible internally for the perpetuation of the system and for conducting regular audits. I congratulate PVA for their work."

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Mario Bernard, Executive Vice President & Chief Manufacturing Officer, Canam

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"My first experience with PVA was at the Canam plant in Mexico. After an extensive analysis of the situation, they came up with a challenging project to improve our efficiency by 100%.  Our management team was willing to meet this challenge, but did not have the skills to bring the project to success. PVA brought their expertise to teach and train our management group and to put in place a management system to monitor our performance and bring it to a new level of efficiency.  

Recently, I was involved with another efficiency project with PVA at one of our plants in the United States. The 20 weeks project was also a success, exceeding our expected target with an improved efficiency in our operations through an open channel of communication.  With PVA’s coaching, we learned to clearly express the accountability expectation to all levels of management involved in the process.  

I strongly…

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Michel Cyr, Vice-President & General Manager Point of Rocks – Structal Bridges

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"My first experience with PVA was at the Canam plant in Mexico. After an extensive analysis of the situation, they came up with a challenging project to improve our efficiency by 100%.  Our management team was willing to meet this challenge, but did not have the skills to bring the project to success. PVA brought their expertise to teach and train our management group and to put in place a management system to monitor our performance and bring it to a new level of efficiency.  

Recently, I was involved with another efficiency project with PVA at one of our plants in the United States. The 20 weeks project was also a success, exceeding our expected target with an improved efficiency in our operations through an open channel of communication.  With PVA’s coaching, we learned to clearly express the accountability expectation to all levels of management involved in the process.  

I strongly recommend PVA for projects where better efficiency is the goal. My experiences with PVA confirm that we met our expectations both operationally and financially with a good return on investment."

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Michel Cyr, Vice-President & General Manager Point of Rocks – Structal Bridges

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"When we asked PVA, over 10 years ago, to come and help us implement Management Operating Systems that would enable us to enhance our efficiency and profitability, it was one of the best decision we made, and the results were what we’d hope they would be.  That is why we have decided in 2010 to contact PVA again, to invite them to look into our processes and our current systems, to see how they could be adapted to our new reality."

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Robin Lapointe, Vice President – Structal Bridges

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"When we asked PVA, over 10 years ago, to come and help us implement Management Operating Systems that would enable us to enhance our efficiency and profitability, it was one of the best decision we made, and the results were what we’d hope they would be.  That is why we have decided in 2010 to contact PVA again, to invite them to look into our processes and our current systems, to see how they could be adapted to our new reality."

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Robin Lapointe, Vice President – Structal Bridges

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"PVA representatives have adapted very well to the Tarpon culture and have made strides to improve some of the components of the culture that were not in line with the ultimate goal of improving productivity.

The best part of the project is the introduction of a culture of accountability. The tools that PVA helped implement have provided managers with the ability to gain visibility into the efficiency of the operation while at the same time making employees and managers accountable for the targets and goals agreed upon.

PVA worked very well with employees at all levels of the organization. They made every effort to work around people’s schedules while still staying on schedule themselves and meeting their deliverables.

One of PVA’s main objectives was to create a culture of continuous improvement. Through the implementation of the PRP program, they have created a system where op

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Jean-François Gratton, General Manager – Tarpon Energy Services

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"PVA representatives have adapted very well to the Tarpon culture and have made strides to improve some of the components of the culture that were not in line with the ultimate goal of improving productivity.

The best part of the project is the introduction of a culture of accountability. The tools that PVA helped implement have provided managers with the ability to gain visibility into the efficiency of the operation while at the same time making employees and managers accountable for the targets and goals agreed upon.

PVA worked very well with employees at all levels of the organization. They made every effort to work around people’s schedules while still staying on schedule themselves and meeting their deliverables.

One of PVA’s main objectives was to create a culture of continuous improvement. Through the implementation of the PRP program, they have created a system where opportunities for improvement are continually identified, evaluated and processed."

Fabrication - Steel Structures

Jean-François Gratton, General Manager – Tarpon Energy Services

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