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Kitting, maker tube, and more! | Shop Kaizen March 2024

Embracing Continuous Improvement: The Kaizen Way at Holstery

At Holstery, the essence of our operations lies in the principle of continuous improvement, or "Kaizen" — a concept deeply rooted in Japanese culture. For those familiar with manufacturing, and undoubtedly in many other sectors, the Kaizen approach is a beacon of progressive change, emphasizing the importance of small, incremental improvements to enhance efficiency in our processes.

In an exciting phase of adaptation, we've recently implemented a new system known as "kitting." This process starts in what we could call an "inbox area," where empty bins from our shipping department are collected. These bins are arranged with temporary tape to denote priorities as we fine-tune this system. The goal is simple: to streamline the way we handle incoming orders, ensuring they are assembled with precision and speed.

The kitting process utilizes a "kanban" — a signaling device that outlines the specific components required for each kit. This aids our kitting station workers in accurately picking the necessary parts from our inventory, assembling them into the bin, and preparing them for the next stage in our assembly line.

An example of this process in action is the assembly of our "Magmasters." Each component — from packaging materials to the magnets and clips required for assembly — is organized and prepared for assembly. This approach not only streamlines production but also ensures that each product meets our high standards of quality.

Central to our manufacturing philosophy is the concept of "one-piece flow," a method where each component is individually processed and passed along the assembly line, eliminating bottlenecks and enhancing efficiency. This approach is exemplified in our assembly process, where each part is riveted and assembled with care before moving on to the next phase.

Innovation extends beyond our assembly line into our logistics and inventory management. By utilizing "maker pipe", we're experimenting with how we store and access our inventory. This modular, adaptable system allows for easy access and replenishment of materials, ensuring our production line remains uninterrupted and efficient.

Our journey towards continuous improvement is supported by custom technology solutions, such as a specialized computer program for tracking and validating the assembly process. This not only guarantees the accuracy of our products but also provides valuable data that helps us optimize our production timeline.

In the spirit of Kaizen, every aspect of our operation at Holstery is under constant review for potential enhancements. From the initial kitting process to the final stages of assembly and inventory management, our commitment to continuous improvement drives us forward. It's a journey that never truly ends but rather evolves with each small step we take towards operational excellence.

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