Within the competitive landscape of the aerospace industry, GMN Aerospace constantly strives to meet our commitments to our customer’s specifications and quality standards. After experiencing an increase in our statement of work over the past year, about 25% of the work produced by GMN Aerospace was supported by short-flow and aircraft on ground (AOG) requests. This translated to our team delivering over two million parts to more than 300 customers in 2018.
At GMN Aerospace, we continually focus on ways to enhance our lean manufacturing and waste reduction efforts, including activities such as our value-stream team (VST) events in collaboration with our customers. So, when I came into the fold at GM Nameplate (GMN) as the new supervisor of the aerospace quality assurance team, I planned to take measures to make any improvements possible within the quality assurance team and process.
On September 14th, Paul Michaels, GMN Aerospace Corporate Director, attended the 2016 Engineering Lean & Six Sigma Conference in San Antonio hosted by the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers. This conference was an opportunity for GMN Aerospace to learn about the latest and most efficient ways to eliminate waste and improve quality within an organization.
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.
Recently, GMN Aerospace conducted our fourth Value Stream Team (VST) workshop with the help of Brian A. McCarthy and Brandon D. Harris from The Boeing Company. The focus of this VST event revolved around the aerospace fabrication cell at GM Nameplate (GMN). The aerospace fabrication cell is a high volume area consisting of four core processes and is the last step in the aerospace manufacturing process before parts arrive in the quality inspection department.
From March 22-24, 2016, GMN Aerospace held its third Value Stream Team (VST) event with BAE Systems. In 2012, GMN Aerospace first partnered with The Boeing Company to hold a VST event for GMN Aerospace’s manufacturing processes. This first event led to the launch of a new designated aerospace fabrication cell. Then in 2015, the second VST event focused on the aerospace quality control department by looking for ways to cut down on the time in between jobs and eliminating waste.
The GMN Aerospace team is continually making efforts to improve our processes and operate as a Lean organization. This includes our recent restructuring efforts to improve collaboration between our quality control department and the rest of manufacturing. The goal is for quality control to become a full contributor to solving workflow issues. Two of the most critical internal supplier/customer relationships in our value stream exist between our fabrication cell and final inspection areas.
Since 2011, GMN Aerospace has pursued lean manufacturing through collaboration with The Boeing Company. One of the key elements to implementing a successful lean manufacturing program is a deep understanding of the concepts and leadership practices necessary to sustain and accelerate the initiative. To that end, I set off to Auburn, Alabama a few weeks ago to attend a Lean Leadership Boot Camp sponsored by the Association for Manufacturing Excellence and the Auburn Technical Assistance Center, Auburn University.
On February 5, Director of GMN Aerospace, Paul Michaels, will be speaking at the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance (PNAA) 2014 Aerospace Conference. Paul’s presentation will discuss evolving demands of Aerospace customers and how suppliers can successfully meet the growing needs of their customers.
This week’s Puget Sound Business Journal’s cover story discusses Boeing’s “Partnering for Success” program. Carlo Mears, Vice President of GMN Aerospace, is quoted in the article referencing GM Nameplate’s partnership with Boeing and its Lean coaching. In addition, GM Nameplate is heralded by the Boeing team as an example of a positive partnership with its suppliers.