Improvement in Vietnam factory - Productivity Up to 169.6%

We implemented improvement activities at a Japanese manufacturer in Vietnam for 6 months.


At this factory, they were promoting improvement activities by themselves, but they thought they did everything they could do on their own, so the activity was stagnant. Then, the Japanese president decided to outsource a shop floor improvement consulting to have their shop floor checked, and asked us, Hirayama Consulting.

Step 1 - Factory diagnosis

First, we conducted a "one-day factory diagnosis" to investigate how much waste is left at the shop floor. When we went to the shop floor, we could see everywhere they improved hard by themselves in the past, but we couldn't find the situation where they improved further at a higher level.

Diagnosis results
The following problems were left at the shop floor.

No standard man-hours Man-hours for each element work were not measured, so there was no standard man-hours.
Waste of operation
  • A lack of line balance was neglected.

  • Wastes of waiting, inventory, and motion were left.

  • Wastes of premises logistics and material supply were left.
Insufficient Sorting and Setting in order 5S was insufficient and wastes occurred.
Insufficient Production Control Plan and actual production was not visualized, so the problems were hard to find.

We made a 35-page "Factory Diagnosis Report" with photos of the shop floor to explain problems clearly, and held a report meeting of the diagnosis results.
Since we reported the above problems clearly and logically with photos of the shop floor, Vietnamese executives understood and thought that they would like to promote improvement together, and decided to terminate the consulting contract at the meeting.

Step 2 - Set the target of the improvement project

The purpose of this improvement activity is of course to increase productivity, but "human resource development" is also a major theme so that they can continue the improvement activities by themselves after this project is over.
Two assembly workplaces were set as the target range, and we have decided to improve productivity step by step and ultimately aim for an improvement of 150%.
The consultant decides the direction of the project and conducts education, and the local staff mainly gives advice to analyze the current situation, identify problems, and implement improvements.

  • Improvement of productivity
  • Human resource development
Target range
  • Workplace A
  • Workplace B
Insufficient Production Control
  • Set the standard man-hours: Jan. - Feb.
  • Productivity improvement
    March : Productivity 120%
    April - May : Productivity 130%
    June : Productivity 150% (Challenge)
Qualitative target
  • Development of human resources who are responsible for production and operation management and operation improvement
  • Creating a mechanism for continuous improvement

Step 3 - Improvement activity

The project started with a kick-off event and we analyzed the current situation (setting standard man-hours) in 1-2 months. In the 3rd month, we improved the parts supply method and the productivity increased by 120%.
In the 4th and 5th months, we improved the line layout, operation, and line balance and productivity increased by 130%. In the 6th month, we conducted overall improvements including the SUB Assy and aimed to increase productivity by 150%.

Master plan

Master plan.png

Educated contents and improvement items
The project members studied the following contents by seminar, put their hands dirty in the shop floor, and practiced "Genchi Genbutsu (Go and see)".
The members enjoyed proceeding with the improvement activity involving the operators in it, and workers at other workplaces and production engineers who saw it also came to see this workplace to study when they had time.
Some managers of other workplaces came to ask us if we could check their workplaces as well, and we could feel the improvement was spreading throughout the factory.

Seminar contents

1 What is waste?
①What is waste?
②Motion and work
③Waste of operation

2 7 Wastes
①Waste of overproduction
②Waste of waiting
③Waste of transportation
④Waste of processing
⑤Waste of inventory
⑥Waste of motion
⑦Waste of defects

3 Waste of motion

3M - Muri (overburden)・Mura (fluctuation)・Muda (waste)

5 Takt time, Cycle time

6 Line balance

7 Lot production vs. One-piece flow productio

8 Single process handling, Multi process handling
①Manpower saving
②Obeya system

9 Parts distribution, Parts supply

10 Premises logistics

11 Production progress management

12 Reduction of tools and jigs

13 Machine cycle reduction

Improvement effect

Improvement effect Productivity improved to 169.6% UP

Genba Kaizen Consultant

Akihiro-Ito.jpgIto Akihiro

Akihiro Ito is active on the front line as a shop floor improvement consultant. He has improved a wide variety of large and medium-sized shop floors of over 300 companies in more than 12 countries in Japan and overseas, and has solved the problems of each shop floor every time. Based on his experience working on the production control system, he implements improvement activities in all processes of a factory such as sales, materials, production control, manufacturing, and outsourcing. In addition, he implements the improvement activities together with the people at the shop floor, make the culture of shop floor improvement rooted in the company, and realize quality improvement, productivity improvement and lead time reduction.

Consultant Detail


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