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On a new course: Alstom a Success Story by Staufen.AG

Can 13 trains really be built in only 18 months? However, the company also faces challenges. China’s two largest state-run train manufacturers merged to form a megacorporation, putting pressure on Alstom’s profitability. Among other things, this affects the Salzgitter site, where some 2,500 people work, which is why Alstom turned to Staufen for support in 2015. The consultants’ task was to help them keep optimizing. The core of their approach: transparent shop floor management. Time was of the essence, because a major project from Deutsche Bahn, the German railway system, came rolling in. Alstom Salzgitter had to complete 13 entire trains within a mere eighteen months, and they had to comply with many detailed specifications. This project was a major challenge given the complexities of the rail technology sector and its demanding regulatory environment. There was no time for errors: their new shop floor management method had to work seamlessly from the outset.

Can 13 trains really be built in only 18 months?
However, the company also faces challenges. China’s two largest
state-run train manufacturers merged to form a megacorporation,
putting pressure on Alstom’s profitability. Among other
things, this affects the Salzgitter site, where some 2,500 people
work, which is why Alstom turned to Staufen for support in 2015.
The consultants’ task was to help them keep optimizing. The core
of their approach: transparent shop floor management. Time
was of the essence, because a major project from Deutsche Bahn,
the German railway system, came rolling in. Alstom Salzgitter had
to complete 13 entire trains within a mere eighteen months, and
they had to comply with many detailed specifications. This project
was a major challenge given the complexities of the rail technology
sector and its demanding regulatory environment. There was
no time for errors: their new shop floor management method
had to work seamlessly from the outset.

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ON A

NEW

COURSE


On a new course

Alstom Salzgitter had only

18 months to build and deliver

13 complete trains to Deutsche

Bahn – an ambitious goal

with a lot riding on it,

literally and figuratively.

2 STAUFEN. | ALSTOM


COMPANY

PROFILE

Alstom was founded in France in 1928, and today it operates in

over 60 countries. This giant of the transport industry gets people

where they need to go and offers an extensive range of products

and services: Alstom produces the high-speed TGV train, as well

as manufacturing urban trains, subways and trams, and provides

services, infrastructure, signal technology and digital mobility

solutions.

With almost 33,000 employees, Alstom generates annual sales of

€7 billion. The high-tech corporation is powered by values, including

team spirit, trust and action. Most recently, however, it is also

being powered by hydrogen. Alstom‘s Coradia iLint is the world‘s

first hydrogen fuel cell train: in other words, Alstom is really on

the move.

Can 13 trains really be built in only 18 months?

STARTING

POINT

However, the company also faces challenges. China’s two largest

state-run train manufacturers merged to form a megacorporation,

putting pressure on Alstom’s profitability. Among other

things, this affects the Salzgitter site, where some 2,500 people

work, which is why Alstom turned to Staufen for support in 2015.

The consultants’ task was to help them keep optimizing. The core

of their approach: transparent shop floor management. Time

was of the essence, because a major project from Deutsche Bahn,

the German railway system, came rolling in. Alstom Salzgitter had

to complete 13 entire trains within a mere eighteen months, and

they had to comply with many detailed specifications. This project

was a major challenge given the complexities of the rail technology

sector and its demanding regulatory environment. There was

no time for errors: their new shop floor management method

had to work seamlessly from the outset.

STAUFEN. | ALSTOM 3


Employees as the engines

of change

APPROACH

Employees were integrated into the process from the outset to

ensure that the entire workforce was on board.

A 30-member project team led the way and set a good example.

Working together, the group successfully demonstrated for

the first time what the current state of communications was in

Salzgitter and how it needed to change. The members of staff

came up with the slogan, “I’m on board,” publicized it on site and

motivated the other teams. More and more employees became

involved and contributed ideas about how to make shop floor

management more efficient.

The project team rolled out shop floor management with four

pilot projects, strategically positioned in critical areas: development,

construction, production and supply chain. Alstom and

Staufen introduced open and regular communication between

team members and the departments in these areas, generated

central figures and values for daily tasks and long-term targets,

and created well-coordinated decision-making processes. Everywhere

they turned, the newly trained staff could see for themselves

how their work proceeded calmly and expediently, thanks

to clear guidelines, transparent key process indicators and newly

defined escalation hierarchies.

4 STAUFEN. | ALSTOM


5

Four pilots that became

two hundred

The progress in the pilot projects was so apparent that other

teams and departments took the initiative and implemented

the new methods as well.

Initially there were four pilot project dashboards documenting

targets and approaches; within a short time, the number rose

to 200. Employees underwent intense coaching and received

guidance, at their newly created development centers, over

200 managers had to put their strengths and weaknesses to

the test. Managers learned how to encourage team-based work

and move it forward. When problems arose, the teams were

able to present their case clearly using facts and figures. Managers

felt that employees again took real pleasure in making decisions

and finding solutions independently. The new sense of

openness also helped to break down the silo mentality between

departments that had taken root in the company; a global way

of thinking evolved; in its place.

STAUFEN. | ALSTOM 5


6 STAUFEN. | ALSTOM


Changes that arrived on schedule

RESULTS

Productivity improved at the site in the first year and, at the same

time, downtime and waiting time declined dramatically. And the

best news of all: Alstom reached its destination. It fully met its delivery

target: all 13 trains were ready on schedule. Deutsche Bahn

acknowledged Alstom’s good work by awarding it the Supplier of

the Year Prize in 2016.

After this successful sprint, Alstom managed to implement lasting

changes in its operations and staff. Among other things, it opened

its own Lean School, the best way to make the site ready to face

the future. Now Alstom Salzgitter is right on track and travelling full

speed ahead.

STAUFEN. | ALSTOM 7


ABOUT STAUFEN

Inside every company there is an even better one.

With this conviction, Staufen AG has been advising and qualifying

companies and employees for more than 25 years.

340

employees

69

Mio. € revenue

17

languages

>90

BestPractice Partner

7.000

seminar participants every year

PUBLISHER

STAUFEN.AG

Consulting.Academy.Investment

Blumenstraße 5

D-73257 Köngen

+49 7024 8056 0

contact@staufen.ag

www.staufen.ag

CONTACT PERSON

Christoph Heine

Director Sales

+49 7024 8056 169

c.heine@staufen.ag

INSIDE EVERY COMPANY

THERE IS AN EVEN BETTER ONE.

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