Often the first problem we have to solve is getting clarity on the definition of what is an on-time shipment. There are different on-time dates thrown around but is there a common definition of the dates? We get that nailed down.
Next, we examine the shipment history under the light of the newly defined metrics and produce an on-time shipment report in the form of a pivot table using available customer, channel, and product information to isolate which combinations are doing well and which aren’t. This starts to give us focus.
We build fishbone diagrams and Ishikawa diagrams to identify the potential areas that are impacting the specifically identified shipment segments. There are a number of potential root causes including no inventory on hand, lack of capacity, incorrect forecasts, unrealistic promise times, inaccurate inventories, seasonal demand, batch order processing, etc.
We then set metrics for each of the potential root causes and examine available metrics to isolate which root causes to focus in on. From there we launch improvement efforts with a cross-functional team.
The improvement efforts are chartered cross-functional kaizen efforts with very specific scopes. With your team, together we document the procedures, barriers, business policies, systems contexts, etc. We take you through best practices, optimal use of systems, where your systems have gaps to current offerings on the market, etc. We identify the key metrics, benchmarks, and targets. We document the future state and establish measured improvement efforts. We can have one or more of these kaizen efforts going simultaneously.