By John Veage
It’s graduation for employees at Enware this week, an event which not only added to an improvement in job satisfaction and work culture but also resulted in an 11% increase in the business with improved communications within and between teams.
To start implementing best practice techniques and remain competitive in a dynamic and increasingly import-dependent market the Taren Point specialist plumbing and personal safety equipment manufacturer engaged Corporate Partners to run a business improvement program for all their staff.
As part of the improvement program, over 100 employees were trained in the nationally-recognised qualification certificate: Competitive Systems and Practices.
The training has been vital to up-skill and engage staff in best practice processes to implement a sustainable and improving culture in the business and all training was tailored to the business’ vision, mission, values and KPIs.
Enware CEO Vicki Edler said that the original impetus for the program was based around process improvements to gain efficiencies and reduce costs, however, the biggest benefit they achieved is the cultural shift in our team.
“They say themselves they feel they have found their voice and are now active participants in shaping Enware’s future. This feeling of ownership will be the at the core of future successes,” she said.
“We had a large component who were somewhat hesitant to undertake the formal training due to concerns around English being their second language. Corporate Partners, who conducted the training, handled this with skill and respect and the employees responded with enthusiasm and resilience to achieve great results, the team worked together to help those most challenged so that no one was left behind.”
Of the 106 employees trained 61 had no prior tertiary training and 58 are from a non-English-speaking background. Enware invested around 60 hours of tuition per employee across the 12-month period.
The Executive Leadership Team developed strategic initiatives and goals in the areas of Safety, Quality, People, Delivery and Cost. Departmental daily meetings set the direction and the meetings focused on resolving issues raised in the previous 24 hours.
The outcomes achieved were numerous and included simple things like the packaging and shipping teams developing new procedures and checklists for daily tasks, to the assembly department reducing missing parts by 75% in the finished products.
Manufacturing teams also improved customer order schedule adherence by 50% and the Research and Development team introduced changes to 3D printing of raw material parts which resulted in 80% reduction in material costs.
It was a company-wide program with the Engineering, Finance and Product Management and Information Technology teams all supporting the project to simplify practices and their product range, which released space in the warehouse and decreased working capital by 10%.
Teams also undertook environmental improvements including a reduction of 37,500L of water when switching water testing to air testing of assembly product and 150,000 L/yr water reduction by streamlining a smartboard tester.
Enware is now embarking on Phase 2 of the program, training an additional 20 staff in new methodology to fast track further business improvements.
Picture: John Veage
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