Lean Implementation at Siemens' Kalwa Plant
(12 pages of text)
The Siemens Kalwa factory in Mumbai, also referred to as Kalwa Works (KW), started in 1973 with the production of motors and later diversified to produce switchgears and switchboards. By 2009, 40 per cent of all Siemens India employees were working in Kalwa and contributing 45 per cent of the total Siemens India production. Kalwa had become the most important business centre for Siemens India.
In October 2006, Siemens AG decided to implement lean manufacturing in the Kalwa factory as part of a worldwide rollout of the Siemens Production System in all its medium-voltage facilities. The implementations were expected to bring drastic improvements in labour productivity, lower inventory levels, and higher throughput to improve the factories’ financial performance. The lean program promised that the factory’s current realized capacity of 4,000 panels per year could be increased by approximately 50 per cent to 6,000 panels per year in the medium term within two years, and to about 12,000 panels within the next four to five years.
While the benefits of successful implementation were attractive, the company faced several challenges, including restructuring the organization, getting staff on board to accept and facilitate the change, and handling resistance from internal and external stakeholders. This case provides an opportunity to analyze and discuss lean implementation issues for a global multinational firm in the Indian context.
The case enables students to do the following:
- Understand the lean implementation process.
- Apply re-engineering concepts.
- Realize the organization-wide, cross-functional, and interwoven challenges of strategy implementation.
- Appreciate the significance of organizational change in effective implementation.
- Analyze critical success factors and key performance indicators while prioritizing different activities relevant to change.
India, Large, 2006-2009
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