Description : The problem this organisation was facing was related to the overload of information generated by client feedback. Consultants were invited to collaborate with one of the Latin American plants (Client Satisfaction Department / Quality Assurance Division) and develop mechanisms for effectively managing customer generated information and the company’s experience and innovation. The aim was to translate customer information into a source for improving the company’s products and services. Initially K&IC consultants together with organisational representatives designed the “Information Flow Model” – a model that expresses the relation that exists between theinformation concepts of the customers and the quality of products and services provided by the company. Based on this model, the team designed and implemented a system that classifies and evaluates customer feedback. This system was considered part of the experience management system, helping the company respond efficiently and effectively to problem reports. Finally, the team linked the model and the system with the company’s global innovation process, helping anticipate customer needs for future product and service development. After the successful regional implementation, the outcome of the project was presented to other organisational units at a corporate office meeting in the US and was adopted by the group as a best practice in terms of product development linked to customer satisfaction.
Description : The customer has factories in Latin America, Europe and Asia. To facilitate knowledge transfer among factory and provide the platform for innovation and increased competitiveness, the company created virtual teams called “Technology Groups”. These Groups (virtual communities of purpose) were made up of members located in different plants across the world, having as their main objective to document and share useful practices and solutions to business problems developed in each factory. Changeland consultants were initially invited to support the implementation of “Technology Groups” in the Latin American plants and provide options for resolving the resistance of their members to documenting and sharing their knowledge within the group as well as inside their plants. This was achieved by (i) providing them with experience management tools from Six Sigma methodology and (ii) facilitating the design of appropriate experience sharing, learning and incentive systems to motivate Technology Group members to participate actively in activities of experience transfer. In the 8 months following project termination, it became apparent that the Technology Group’s performance improved due to the large reduction of costs on “mistake repetition” and “wheel reinvention”. These results gave confidence to the Asian and European plants to adopt the outcome of the Six Sigma project.
Description : This bank is among the top banks in the Central and Latin American region and an ally of European financial institutions with interests in expanding their operations in that area. The project was focused on the Mortgage Services division. The division was confronting a high and increasing rate of bad debt caused by (a) the difficult economic situation of the economy in the region at the time and (b) the low rate of credit recovery. This situation was influencing the relations with customers negatively, thus intensifying the problem. The K&IC project focused on: (i) improving organisational processes orienting them towards customer satisfaction; (ii) increasing personnel participation and (iii) identifying and satisfying needs on skill development and information management. The Steering Group decided to focus on the human aspect rather on the processes themselves. Participants on the Six Sigma improvement project were distributed in 9 teams working in parallel on different processes of the division and different regions. Six months after the project was completed, the employees of the division, with access to a redesigned IT system and customised learning programs, started positively influencing the relationship between the division and its customers. According to the leadership team of the bank, this was reflected on the increasing rates of dept payment. Changeland consultants where asked to implement a similar approach to other areas of the bank.
Description : SUPERMATIC is one of the companies of the Vitro international consortium and an ally of The Whirlpool Corporation. The company is located outside of the city of Monterrey, state of Nuevo Leon, and develops electric appliances for households (i.e. refrigerators). During the first half of 1997 a high investment project called Factory Master Plan (FMP) was in progress, including the implementation of Just-In-Time and Total-Preventive-Maintenance. The consulting team was asked to collaborate with the Department of Organisational Effectiveness and propose alternative solutions dealing with the company’s main concerns: (i) specialised, relatively brief training for the employees involved in the FMP project; and (ii) intellectual capital leakage -the shift of employees that participate in the project to other companies due to job dissatisfaction. The solutions proposed included customised training programs and an experience management system. Furthermore, to motivate employees not to leave the company the conceptual basis of the evaluation and reward mechanisms was analysed providing insights to their improvement.
Description : Telmex-LADA is the long distance services division of the Mexican Telecommunications Company. At the time of the Beta-test, due to the recent application in Mexico of a new anti-monopoly law concerning telecommunication services, this Division was facing strong competition from various international companies, including AT&T and MCI. This competition was based on the quality of service rather than on price or technological infrastructure. The consultants were invited to provide tools and techniques that facilitate participative decision making, strategic planning and utilisation of the intellectual resources of the company. The main objective were (i) to reduce the training period employees needed to catch up with the latest technological developments in the field, (ii) to help employees quickly transfer new skills to their jobs and (iii) to provide a high standard of service to their clients, to continue to play a role in the Mexican market. The consultants collaborated with the managers of Telmex-LADA in the development of the strategic plans to achieve the above mentioned objectives.
Description : This company, CERVECERÍA SUPERIOR Brewery, which is located in the city of Guadalajara, state of Jalisco, had recently gone through a Total Quality management and ISO certification project. Nevertheless, there was still evidence of conflicts, lack of employee motivation, lack of inter-personal communication as well as problems in planning, organising and team integration. The objectives of the IC project included: (i) achieve a change of culture in the Quality Assurance Department of the company, towards a more participative one; (ii) improve teamwork and communication; (iii) improve departmental processes. 5 sub-directors and 23 employee representatives participated in the project. Organisational Participants were distributed in five teams working in parallel on different processes. A pilot team was defined in order to advance at a faster pace, and develop experience on the use of ORDIC tools and techniques of K&IC management, which could then be transferred to other teams. Due to the success of the pilot project the company decided to develop a video documentary which was used to introduce the rest of the organisation units to K&IC management.
Description : SIGMA is one of the world leaders in the international food industry. In response to the increased demand for three new products SIGMA decided to construct a new factory in the city of Linares, state of Nuevo Leon. The plant would function with 127 employees distributed in three organisational levels, and five departments. Initially the consultants trained eight employees of the Department of Logistics on IC management concepts and the use of ORDIC tools. During the first semester of 1997, selected company managers and the 8 Changeland consultants collaborated with the different departments of the factory, in order to achieve the objectives of the Six Sigma imprvement project and facilitate: (i) the design and standardisation of production processes in order to achieve ISO certification; (ii) the definition of organisational requirements on specialized skill development; (iii) the design of systems that decrease the training life cycle; (iv) the design of appropriate experience management mechanisms that would register know-how on developing a new plant and support knowledge transfer to other members of the SIGMA consortium if they decide to develop a new factory. At the end of the project (May 1997), the plant initiated formal operations.
Description : The Hazardous Residues Laboratory forms part of the Environmental Quality Research Centre of the ITESM university system in Mexico. The lab was seeking ISO certification for the analytical process of Corrosivity, Reactivity, Explosivity, Toxicity and Inflammability it performs. ISO certification was necessary in order for the lab to increase its client’s portfolio and avoid existing financial problems. The IC project focused on (i) improving the lab’s productivity, (ii) obtaining the certification and (iii) identifying and satisfying IC needs related to skill development and information management. The lab had 8 full-time employees distributed in three organisational levels: one Director of the lab, five certified Analysts with graduate and postgraduate degrees and two technical assistants.
Description : Draw Tite is one of the factories of Draw Tite International whose corporate office is in Canton, Michigan, USA. Draw Tite/AmMex is located in the city of Reynosa, state of Tamaolipas, at the border between Mexico and USA. It is a small factory of 60 employees that develops electric appliances for the automotive industry. The average age of the employees was 22 years and the educational level was primary and secondary school. The organisational structure was highly hierarchical and there was no quality management system implemented. The general director of the factory, as a first step towards ISO certification, invited the staff to facilitate (i) the change towards a participative culture, (ii) the standardization of processes, and (iii) design of customized training systems for the employees. Changeland was instrumental in deliverin successfully the above ahead of the schedule and with very positive results.
Description : At the time the improvement project took place KREARTON was a two year old Mexican company producing and commercialising material for wrapping, packing, bottling and baling. Its principal lines of production cover (a) cardboard-made products and (b) the design of integrated packaging systems for industrial products. The company had 15 employees and 40 workers working in one factory and two regional distribution centres located in Mexico City and in Aguascalientes. The owners of the company invited the Changeland to facilitate the process of franchising KREARTON’s brand and its concept of a model shop. This shop would integrate the commercial function with the function of autonomous and self-financing production. The objective of the owners was to franchise the concept of KREARTON´s model shop,open new model shops in different strategic cities in Mexico and in this way achieve 500% growth during the third year of the company’s.