Founded in 1958, Harris Pillow Supply began as a franchise of Fluff ‘n Puff Pillow Service in the Chicago area. The following year, the founder purchased the inventory of pillow cleaning machines from Fluff ‘n Puff when the company filed for bankruptcy. He began sewing his own ticking and selling the pillow cleaning machines to laundry service businesses and dry cleaners. He later redesigned the pillow machine to the Pillow-Vac that Harris Pillow Supply still manufactures and sells. In 1980, the mobile business in Chicago was sold and the company relocated to Beaufort, South Carolina. Over the years, the business has evolved to include multiple services: sewing pillow ticking, providing feathers and supplies for refreshing and renovating pillows, manufacturing pillows, and manufacturing and selling the world’s only pillow renovating machine – the Pillow-Vac.
SCMEP, part of the MEP National Network™, met with Harris Pillow to evaluate their inventory management system. In order to reduce excess inventory, prevent stock outs, and improve the overall management of the flow of raw materials, SCMEP recommended developing a Kanban system.
Keep doing what you are doing! SCMEP helps shine a light on South Carolina manufacturing, not just for promotion, but more importantly introducing other manufacturers in the state to each other. This enables both parties to complete their current and future projects by building relationships.
Two days were spent training and implementing. Day one consisted of Kanban training and the team designing the Kanban system, including Kanban cards, board, mailbox, and procedures. Between the first and second day, the team made all Kanban cards per the spreadsheet, made and mounted the Kanban board and mailboxes, and made and mount procedures. Day two consisted of coaching the team through training necessary employees and implementation.