Posts by Cara Chatellier

RFP Response From the Reviewer Perspective
Chaz Ross-Munro made some important observations in her article on things to avoid when responding to an RFP. Ms. Ross-Munro starts out by placing the RFP in the context of the review process. “Imagine reviewing 20 technical Request for Proposal (RFP) responses that are more than 50 pages each. You’ve now stepped into the shoes of the average selection committee member reviewing more than 1,000 pages of material from various firms.” The implication of this context is to make it easier for reviewers to easily review your offering and quickly assess why your response makes your case.  To help others shape their RFP response to the realities of the receiving end of the process, Ms. Ross-Munro offers up the following suggestions: 1. Avoid Unnecessarily long responses Don’t: give a wordy response or narrative that drags on. Be as succinct as possible. Keep in mind that you should try to meet the needs of the reviewers…
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Manufacturing Plant
Situation A manufacturing plant was suffering from excessively high in-process scrap rates (6.8%) in the zinc smelting department. Although the raw material could be re-melted and salvaged, the labor costs were excessive and on-time product deliveries were at stake.  Actions To remedy the inefficiencies in the manufacturing process, the company called on MetaExpert Michael. Micheal led the company through analysis. They studied the data and found that the root cause of the problem was with two-part numbers coming from two die-cast machines.  Furthermore, Michael studied the parts and his efforts and attention to detail in the manufacturing processes led to the discovery that the tools used were not properly vented. This caused porosity in the parts which resulted in the high in-process scrap rates. Results MetaExpert Michael’s experience in manufacturing processes and keen eye led to both tools being repaired at a cost of less than $15,000 each. The root…
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Evaluating Indirect and Direct Factors for I.40 ROI
“Think of the tangential benefits from the Space Program” In July, the World celebrates the fantastic Journey that Apollo 11 performed in 1969 when the first men were sent to orbit the Moon. Just think of what has happened as a result of the single-minded goal of putting a man on the Moon. At that time, the total computing power needed for that effort was less than the computing power of a smartphone. The main computers that powered the Apollo 11 mission were the size of four refrigerators!  Most likely, the majority of us don’t remember the protests at the spending ($40 billion for the entire 12 years of the NASA Man-on-the-Moon project), but looking back, just look at the unforeseen benefits of the digital age. Technology has shown itself to have the capacity of producing exponential ROI …in hindsight. The Investment of Industry 4.0 When considering the important investment…
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excavators construction quality control
Situation A building and construction company brought MetaExpert Alan onboard to help sort out operational and logistical inefficiencies regarding the construction of metal structures. The company was facing a 100% sorting and rework rate of their products after manufacturing. In addition, as a result of the focus on inspection after product completion, rather than during production, deliveries were delayed. Actions To remedy the construction company’s quality control issues and delivery delays, Alan took the following measures: Reviewed with the team all applicable specifications to ensure all employees understood the requirementsDeployed the requirements to Key Process Control Parameters, not just final quality controlDeveloped the processes to be robust according to the requirementsImplemented control plansAudited process parameters and key characteristics, not just final goods Results Through his initial assessment, Alan was able to determine that a lack of communication and too many “experts in the room” was a major contributor to the…
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Industry 4.0 Factors That Will Contribute to Increasing ROI
According to a study done by the World Economic Forum in May 2018, ROI on Industry 4.0 projects can vary widely. For example, industry leaders (which tend to be larger by revenue) can achieve productivity gains of about 70%. Small to Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) are more likely to see gains of approximately 30%. Regardless of your organization’s standing in the industry, certain factors can help maximize the ROI of Industry 4.0 projects. Strong Executive Leadership. A successful journey to Industry 4.0 requires strategic vision and alignment across all parts of the organization. This is what makes having a comprehensive Business analysis of the entire company an important first step in the transition to I-4.0 This study must originate at the top of the organization. Leaders should frequently and authentically voice their support for achieving Industry 4.0, not only through organization-wide communication but also through the allocation of resources and the…
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Automotive Giant Back on Top with MetaExpert Help
Situation A multi-billion-dollar tier 1 company became involved with a customer regarding a safety issue in which the customer was accusing the supplier to be at fault, thus revoking all 3 supplier manufacturing site locations for Q1.  This put the tier one supplier on new business hold and at risk of losing additional business they had plus additional quoting of new business opportunities. The company reached out to MetaExpert Jack for his APQP Process understanding, Advanced Critical Chain / Critical Path Methods knowledge, 5S and Standard Work expertise.  Actions Jack guided the organization to meet the challenge and improved productivity and facilitation of quality training and awareness. A collaborative cross-functional team of production, purchasing, engineering, and management was formed and led through a decisive 1-year plan, which involved the customer. This allowed for all key milestones to be met such that Q1 customer endorsement letters and Q1 site certifications were…
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War for Talent
Terms like innovation, transformation, and re-inventing are all common management jargon and aspirations. With the amazing new technologies transforming business models and the way businesses are planning for the future, there is a constant battle hunting for and recruiting talent that can bridge the gap between what was and what is needed to stay competitive. Note that talent does not necessarily mean a singular person. In fact, it is very difficult to find all the qualities needed to fit the definition of “Top Talent” in just one single person. Many think the War for Talent is all about technical capabilities such as computer engineers, software developers, and specialists in artificial intelligence. While this is partially true, there is an even more pressing need: Talent that can understand not only what new technology is MOST appropriate for helping to re-invent the company but also how to implement the changes necessary. Over…
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Excess Freight
Situation Our MetaExpert, Ron, had a client who was a $15 billion global power leader that designs, manufactures, sells, and distributes its product and related technology around the world. The client had a major issue with unexpected air freight costs into several of its offshore plants. They brought Ron on board to analyze the situation and recommend and implement solutions. He felt the air freight was symptomatic of the actual root cause and suggested utilizing a seven-step problem-solving process to get to the root cause.  Ron’s goals for this client were to: Get to Root Cause investigation and action.Implementation of Key Performance Indicators so that he could measure improvement.Improve forecast calculating and provide for the maintenance of systems.Improve inventory accuracy and material flow processes.Improve supplier communication and relationship management internally within the organization.Achieve budgeted expense control through process control. Actions To get to the root cause, Ron dove into the…
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Major Retailer
Situation MetaExpert Daniel served as Project Manager to a well-known clothing manufacturer and retailer with over 1,1000 stores located on 3 continents. Daniel’s proven expertise was key to substantial cost savings and process improvements. Actions A key part of Daniel’s role in overhauling this Major Retailer’s logistics process was to provide the initial kick off strategy guidance to Executive Management. Thanks to his track record of operational excellence, Daniel’s first step was to conduct due diligence with internal and external resources to capture the “AS IS” state of logistics operations. He then created a Work Breakdown Structure for the Project Plan to realize the “TO BE” state.  Once Daniel had determined the end-goal for this Major Retailer’s logistics, he: Developed, monitored, and controlled the Project Plan Conducted a weekly status update meeting with the Executive Management team Created and administered RFI. Created RFP, disseminated, crafted scorecard, and scored RFP responses…
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MetaExpert Holly Helps a Call Center Go Lean for Big Savings
Our MetaExpert, Holly, gets it done! See how she used her expertise in lean methodology and value stream analysis to bring big savings to a call center. Situation A call center was nearing the end of their State contract, with only 1 year remaining. The scope of the contract represented 20% of health insurance members. Actions MetaExpert Holly implemented a Value Stream Analysis to identify areas of waste within the call center that were a detriment to customer satisfaction, costing the organization money, and slowing down their processes. Holly’s analysis revealed that:  85% FCR resulted in activities having to be routed to multiple areas within the organization.  1/6 of these activities aged longer than 30 days resulting in significant member dissatisfaction.  Several projects were underway within claims escalations, but none would solve the root cause.  Waste in the process included up to 35% misrouting, and 25% first pass yield costing…
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