By working with OMEP our workforce, from the floor staff on up, discovered a new way of operating and thinking. We can apply this to any project or problem. We originally came to OMEP to learn about increasing machine productivity, but we have instead created an entirely new, more effective method of working.
OMEP’s on-site consultants adopted a blended continuous improvement approach with Bob’s Red Mill, focusing on problem solving, capacity creation and culture building. To do this, OMEP worked closely with the operations leadership team to identify which processes to focus on.
Safety, in general, was selected as the vehicle for problem-solving training. It was accessible and relatable to everyone in the plant and didn’t require special technical knowledge. The new equipment installation process was also selected as a target area to teach project management and build production capacity. In each case, OMEP created customized training for the Bob’s Red Mill team and then used real-world projects to practice new skills.
Additional continuous improvement tools such as visual tracking boards at the packaging lines, Gemba walk routines, and individual leadership coaching engagements were included, allowing Bob’s Red Mill develop their culture not only in Operations but also in HR, New Product Development, and Customer Service. In terms of both sales and production, Bob’s Red Mill continues to experience record weeks compared to where they were last year.
Finally, OMEP’s expertise proved invaluable with the recruiting and hiring of personnel in the engineering department. The workload has been balanced out, improving the efficiency of the engineering team. Even in the time of COVID-19 and social distancing, OMEP has remained an important partner to Bob’s Red Mill and continues to support their continuous improvement initiatives.