Cellular manufacturing against relocation: the most efficient way to transform plants
Document typeConference lecture
Rights accessOpen Access
This paper presents a methodology to help decide whether a process-oriented plant would become more competitive by relocating its facilities in a low-cost country or by transforming it into an efficient plant by means of the implementation of a cellular layout with production driven by demand, managed in accordance with the principles of lean manufacturing. In this paper, our methodology is applied to an existing processoriented production system A set of key magnitudes and cost data attributed to the production plant and the way it is managed are calculated. These key magnitudes, related to production cycles and inventories, are easily calculated by means of an Operation-Time diagram. Fourteen types of manufacturing and distribution costs are considered including those costs due to the relocation strategy, which are mostly related to logistics. The paper includes the necessary calculations to transform the original plant by implementing three U-shaped flexible cells and to quantify the number of employees that are necessary, taking into account global takt time and cycle time of individual processes. Key production magnitudes and production and distribution costs are then calculated for the cellular implementation. Final conclusions show that an efficient implementation of cellular production processes pursuant to the lean management principles (low resource consumption, elimination of activities that do not contribute to value creation, maintenance, on-time deliveries, high quality…) is able to offset, at least in the studied case, the improvement in costs attributed to relocation strategies in process-oriented plants managed in a conventional style.
CitationCuatrecasas, L.; Fortuny, J.; Olivella, J. Cellular manufacturing against relocation: the most efficient way to transform plants. A: International Conference on Group Technology/Cellular Manufacturing. "Third International Conference on Group Technology/Cellular Manufacturing". Groningen: 2006, p. 88-93.