The Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) in Coventry work with industry and academic institutions to understand the challenges facing both. A consultant team from the MTC visited WH Kemp earlier in the year to advise on our processes and learn more about our business.
Any visit like this brings an opportunity to learn and we were grateful for the suggestions they made for minor improvements, and we were very pleased with the complimentary tone of the report they sent. It endorsed what we have learnt from customer audits, but we know that we can never become complacent and should always be open to learning more about how we support our customers.
One of the aspects of our operation that I am most proud of is our production facility and the team who work there. MTC said that “the shop floor has ‘showroom’ effect. Customers should be encouraged to walk the shop floor and speak to your people”. WH Kemp have many people who have been with the business, 10, 20 or even 30 years. A customer pointed out to me recently that the words he heard most often on the shop floor were ‘loyalty,’ ‘longevity,’ ‘duty,’ and ‘friendly.’ His opinion was that this atmosphere was reflected in the quality of work being presented to his company, so it was good to hear this endorsed by the MTC. Their report talked about our organisation and team spirit commenting that “people take pride in what they do this is a great assist with continuous improvement and problem solving”.
Commenting on our delivery performance and RTF (right first time) figure MTC were impressed with the quality, which they described as “high for sub-contract sector.” In the second quarter of 2023 we achieved 98.5% On Time in Full and 99.96% Right First Time, which is an excellent achievement in any manufacturing environment.
MTC were equally positive about our approach to customer interactions. They were impressed by our “management of supply chain” and that our customers were offered “cost transparency” in addition to the “high quality and delivery performance”. They met our New Projects engineering team and were impressed with design process support. In reviewing our new project introduction process, they were impressed to see our “blue-chip customer credentials” and the fact that we offer customers so much more than cable harnesses with our “provision of sub-assemblies such as electromechanical builds “
Most of the MTC consultants time was spent walking through our business processes. They commented positively on our “Daily stand ups … with issues escalated and improvement opportunities captured and tracked”. They appreciated our “active management of issues escalated by production cells which capture and track improvement ideas”. Our continuous improvement programme caught the eye of the MTC consultants, who noted our “system for issue escalation improvement ideas has shown to be sustainable and effective”. They also noted how we represent a “good example of effective visual management system”.
After 50 years producing cable assemblies at WH Kemp we continue to learn and improve our products and processes applying those lessons daily in maintaining our sector-leading quality stats. To learn more about how we operate, and how we have implemented these tips visit our website or get in touch.