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Branham Accessories Takes Lean Journey


Branham Accessories, owned and operated by Chris and Jennifer Branham, was started in March of 2006 in Cullman, Alabama. They provide customized fabrication services for vehicles and parts. Originally this business was started because of Chris’s love for the motorcycles. The company increasingly grew and in 2018 they moved into a new facility where they are currently located.  

The Challenge

Branham came to ATN, part of the MEP National Network™, needing help organizing their overall business operations. The company had an inventory system, but it wasn’t being fully utilized. As new inventory came in, their current system was lacking in housing and distribution efficiency. Inventory would often remain in one area for an extended length of time. Employees were also sending unnecessary time looking for parts which slowed down production. Branham wanted a more visual and organized system to improve customer satisfaction and the organization’s efficiency utilizing Lean tools.  
We were pleasantly surprised at how much ATN helped us improve our inventory system, which in turn greatly increased our ability to track parts and provide quicker out the door services to our customers. The Cullman ATN Team, which is our local group, helped us tremendously. We plan to utilize their services for more improvement projects and training.
— Chris Branham, Owner

MEP's Role

ATN prepared a plan to teach lean methods. This plan included a boot camp in Lean 101, 5S and value Stream Mapping.  As part of the Kaizen event, ATN assisted Branham in identifying a current and desired state of the business layout. Once identified, ATN and Branham employees, began working to achieve the future sate by categorized all parts and locations so that employees could quickly pull the items they needed.

Inventory was separated out into a staged area so that there would be two separate places for incoming and outgoing inventory (returns).  The vertical space of the shop was maximized by adding new racks for inventory. Additionally, racks were erected for narrow parts so that they could easily be seen and the frequently used items were labeled and within easy reach. Lean standard work instructions were created for essential tasks and a daily 5S checklist was created for employees so that bins would be replenished, and tools would be returned to their proper location. Following the event, ATN provided Branham with an action list of additional items and those items have since been completed.

Created February 4, 2023