Supply chain design and relocation of the assembly plan
Continental AG is a Germany based one of the worlds largest automobile part manufacturing company. In last 150 years, Continental has expanded it’s wings to 58 countries. Continental Hydraulic Brakes Pvt Ltd started its operations in Gurugram (India) in a partnership with Rico. Gradually, Conti was expanding business in India.
I was first hired to examine the current supply chain (including vendors) and forecast the future supply chain requirements. This led to re-designing warehouse, storage methods and needs, designing and redesigning packaging standards as per updated Economic Order Quantity (EOQ) and optimum warehouse capacity, and vendor development. Recommendation were made on methods to update the plant layout design with potential to promote efficiency of equipment, space , and man and material flow. Furthermore, a new warehouse rack design and FIFO maintenance register and procedure to maintain it, method for open communication between the warehouse operators and the production plan developers were developed.
Soon, after this Conti was moving into its own plan in Manesar from Rico’s plant in Gurugram. I was, again, hired to study the factors in plant relocation in terms of Operations. Here, existing plant layout with new plant layout were compared and analyzed, time and process flow studies were performed, vendors for various requirements associated with the relocation process were developed, inventory storage policies leading to new warehouse design were recommended with reduced bottle-necks and backtracking, cycle time was minimised, recommendations for reducing non-value-added activities and improving production quality were laid.
Time study clearly showed the possibility of increment in the assembly line efficiency by more than 4% with possible reduction in cycle time. Such an approach represents optimization of labor and material flow. A template for design of new warehouse has been presented with optimization of labor, material handling system and ever present space constraint. The design of the warehouse improves the efficiency of the existing warehouse in terms of space utilization and efficiency. With this proposed layout, Continental can increase production and reduce the amount of inventory in stock and reduce dependence on outside warehouses.
This experience led to the first research paper of my career and my interest in Operations.