Diagnosis of an aluminium plant management

Industry 

Production of aluminium parts


Localisation 

Germany


Project type 

​Plant management diagnostics for operational improvement

Context and objectives 

The plant has faced many challenges in the last 3 years: change of management, acquisition by another company, strong growth. Its costs have increased while its customer service level has decreased.

The plant management decided to hire a consultant to define and implement a plan to accelerate its improvement.

The first step consisted of a diagnosis of the operational performance of the site and the definition of the improvement plan. We present here the part of the diagnosis that was carried out using the Wevalgo platform.



Main results of the diagnosis

Average managerial practices and the Supply Chain as a weak point

An online Wevalgo questionnaire followed by interviews with the management committee enabled a very quick overview of the site's situation. The results clearly showed two points:
  • The maturity of the site's managerial practices was very average.
  • A weak point in the "Planning - Supply Chain" area

This confirmed from the outset the need for general site improvement in addition to a more precise focus.

Transversal root causes: a failing steering system, unclear roles and responsibilities

The "systemic" and transversal nature of the problem was confirmed by the weak assessments on governance points: the site's performance management system (indicators and dashboards, performance review meetings, decisions and action plans), roles and responsibilities, and operation at the interfaces between plant departments.

Weak steering system, e.g. on target-indicators and visual / short-interval management.

Following the initial scoping, a more in-depth diagnosis was decided on the steering system. A specific Wevalgo best practice model was used.

The evaluation using this model confirmed in detail that all the elements of the steering system were not at the right level.

Each area of the graph can be explored in detail. The detail of the "indicator objectives" shows that it is in particular the right number of indicators and the breakdown of the main objectives (the KPOs - Key Performance Objectives) that are the most deficient.


The detail of "Visual and frequent management" shows that there are few numerical tables or luminous indicators (or even sound alerts) and that the frequency of control points is too low to anticipate deviations



Ignorance of the key factors of production performance...little accepted by managers

Another important point has been identified. Key factors of production performance (bottlenecks, important settings...) were not well mastered. Above all, thanks to a finer analysis made possible by the Wevalgo platform, it was possible to show that there was an underestimation of this problem by those responsible. This was not favourable to improvement. In fact, we see on the graph a significant difference in the evaluation of this parameter between the production managers and the others.

This made it possible to analyse this point in greater depth, to show the managers that there was a problem to be solved here and to set up a more consequent change management system.

 A diagnosis leading to a transformation project

Following the diagnosis, the plant's management decided to launch a project to implement a nine-month transformation plan, which was validated by the company's management, and supported by the consultants in charge of the diagnosis.


Wevalgo services used

The services were only the use of two evaluation models of the online catalogue Wevalgo :


Who used Wevalgo's services: a freelance consultant

Both Wevalgo's evaluation models were used by the consultant responsible for the diagnosis. To prepare his face-to-face interviews with the steering committee with the scoping questionnaire. And to diagnose the management system because it was detected as an area for improvement and therefore to be investigated.

He himself personalised the questionnaires: choice of participants (a selection of the main site managers, addition of an introduction to the participants' home page, desired areas of analysis,) and use of his own logo.

He invited the participants to log in and answer the evaluations. He was able to follow the progress of the responses in real time and see the results and multiple analyses on the Wevalgo site before his interviews.

The use of Wevalgo was completely transparent to the clients. All they had to do was answer the questions on our intuitive web interface, which had the consultant's logo on it.

It should be noted that in this case, the consultant was a freelancer hired by a consulting firm responsible for this client in order to carry out this diagnosis.



Added value of Wevalgo services

First, the consultant was able to use ready-to-use evaluation questionnaires that they did not have themselves. Building them himself could have taken him several days or even weeks.

All the analyses and graphs presented here were made possible by the automatic consolidation of data from the questionnaires completed online by the participants. With no other task for the consultant than to customize the questionnaire beforehand.

He was also able to completely transform the interviews he had with the various members of the management committee. Instead of spending 1.5 hours asking the questions from the evaluation questionnaires, he spent about 1 hour interviewing them in a different way:

  • 20 minutes to investigate some of the answers of the questionnaire
  • 40 minutes to move on to other topics: retrieve data or plan the following activities

This allowed him to show more added value to the customer, while making faster progress on these diagnostics.