The “Receiving Warehouse Kaizen Blitz” Continuous Improvement team formed to re-configure the Receiving and Kitting warehouse. The team focused on the need to reorganize for a better system due to running out of storage and work space in our kitting and receiving area due to our growing sales.
Reconfiguring the warehouse was vital to the business forward for overall better storage, easier identification of storage locations and quicker access to high usage inventory. This would reduce the time and amount of material handling within the department.
To improve the organization of these warehouse departments, the team focused on Kaizen principles. The term ‘Kaizen’ stems from LEAN Manufacturing and is the idea of not focusing on everything all at once, but focusing on small, incremental improvements to make sustainable change. Focusing on one problem at a time and fully resolving that problem before moving on to the next improvement is what Kaizen entails. The term simply translates to “good change”.
Working together utilizing Kaizen principles, the team relocated inventory to create more floor space and moved high use inventory closer to its point of use. Inventory for products built less frequently was moved to locations less accessible, allowing high use inventory to be easily identified and available.
A future goal of the CI team includes altering the layout of the receiving processing area to allow for quicker receiving / identification of incoming inventory and placement into their storage locations. The team will also be identifying an area within the Assembly docks area to receive assembly packaging to be used during in the following day’s production. This change will store it the point of use, eliminating the some of the material handling that is occurring in our current process.
These changes would furthermore improve the overall flow and layout of the shop, reducing the amount of material handling occurring, and increasing productivity.