Increased the quality consistency from 82% to 99.5% by creating new standards & in-build quality processes
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Reduction in Lead time
Additional profit per garment
When conducting the assessment phase of the project, we identified significant gaps to potential in the following 3 areas:
Quality Compliance (%)
Lead Time (h)
Cost per garment (£)
The 3 measures were linked by one common theme - a lack of quality standards and in-built quality processes. The variation in quality between operators meant that 18% of final garments had to be reworked. This added significantly to the overall lead time and the additional correction time and material scrappage was a large input to garment cost.
Additionally, by working in large batch sizes, products would not flow through the system in short intervals but instead would wait up to 1 day to proceed. This not only increased the lead time, but meant batches (of hundreds) were scrapped as defects were only identified at the subsequent process stage.
Together, we identified there were much smarter ways of working. First of all, we conducted a work-study to identify the processing time and steps required for each garment type. We then identified bottlenecks and balanced the workload. Re-designing the lines by product group meant we could achieve a vast reduction in batch size and items could easily be passed between operators using a hanging system.
Revised quality standards were introduced and trained to all employees; templates, stencils and fixtures were used to ensure repeatability and build quality into processes. The results include a compressed lead time, reduced cost and improvement in quality.