Background: One of our large manufacturing clients had put in place strong performance improvement initiatives to ensure product consistency in infant formula production. Within these initiatives, our client identified the following goals for the Spray Drying section:
- Raise the operators’ broad process knowledge to a level that allows them to understand the whole process and consequently perform diagnostics to identify the source of problems;
- Enable new hires to get up to speed quickly due to rapid and effective knowledge-transfer;
- Capture the production and maintenance “Best Practices” in current use in the company’s main facility;
- Put core process knowledge, along with the Best Practices from the main facility, into a format allowing ease of knowledge-transfer and dissemination so that existing plants within the world wide enterprise could benefit by improved performance;
- Make the knowledge-transfer material available to those responsible for the construction of new plants which would be using the same process, thereby reducing time to market.
Our client decided to use e-learning to attain the above goals and engaged the services of Skillpad to implement a project to build the necessary e-learning modules to support their own initiatives.
The Skillpad Approach: As with all of our custom projects, we established a project team comprising our own subject matter experts and skilled multimedia developers. Drawing on the expertise of our client’s technical experts, we documented the process along with the local “Best Practices” for the company’s spray drying section including the various operating parameters as well as related process control and troubleshooting procedures. This knowledge was then distilled into custom e-learning modules for hosting on our client’s Learning Management System (LMS) for rapid and efficient dissemination throughout the facility and the other plants around the world.
The use of the Skillpad custom e-learning modules by operations and maintenance personnel gave our client increased product output due to operators working in a consistent manner making use of their increased process knowledge along with related Best Practices and, for a new facility elsewhere in the world, reduced the time to market. In addition to a very short return on investment (ROI), the intellectual property contained in the modules became a valuable company asset. The modules also resulted in specific permanent benefits for our client’s operators and production department:
Benefits for Operators:
- Capable of rapid and accurate diagnosis of problems and speedy implementation of solutions.
- Control parameter incorrect settings recognized and impact minimized.
- Fundamental understanding of the entire process by operators rather than solely their own function.
- Rapid induction of new hires as they are brought up to speed more quickly.
Benefits for Production Department:
- More product due to consistent work practices across all shifts.
- Reduced equipment downtime.
- Significant reduction in waste.
To find out how Skillpad custom modules can help you, visit our products section.