On Tuesday July 12th, members from the GMN Aerospace team had the opportunity to tour the facility of our valued customer, the Umbra Group – a producer of highly-machined products for the aerospace industry. The tour was conducted by Umbra’s CEO, Bob Collett, and its purpose was to benchmark best practices for Lean Manufacturing.
As expected of a Lean organization, the Umbra facility was very clean with great floor markings, signage, organization, and labeled shelves. They have white linoleum floors and have painted their older machines white. Additionally, they use blue and red workflow buckets to differentiate parts with potential quality problems.
Collett explained that over time they achieved buy-in from their front line employees to engage in the success of a Lean enterprise through the implementation of practices such as the use of a metrics display board and Kata (a daily problem-solving routine). The Umbra team showed great humility and expressed an understanding that Lean is an ongoing journey.
This tour equipped our team with some interesting ideas to include in our roll-out of Lean initiatives within our aerospace processes, which is a process that has already begun in our aerospace fabrication cell.
At Umbra, improvement is the expectation. GMN Aerospace would like to thank the Umbra team for letting us visit their facility and see an example of a “Best-In-Class” Lean operation.