Below are Lean Six Sigma success stories in the Mining industry organized alphabetically. For success stories in other industries, please visit our Lean Six Sigma Success Stories page.
In 2007, a new management team at BHP Billiton’s EKATI mine kicked off a lean Six Sigma deployment that utilized a five-year plan to drive breakthrough improvements.
Sterlite Industries, a leading copper producer of India, was facing an accumulation of working capital in the form of Cenvat owing to the cycle time taken between goods received, consumed and credit availed. It urgently needed to significantly reduce the Cenvat availment cycle time from the current 58 days. A brainstorming session, followed by a fish bone diagram plot, data gathering, and a Pareto analysis prioritised the high level causes. A why-why analysis identified a few root causes. A feasibility and cost analysis helped select the solution. Consequently, a SAP R/3 system and SOPs were implemented along with the corresponding training. The tangible benefits included reduction in working capital by Rs 8.40 crore annually and the related interest, and system improvement for Cenvat availment. The intangible benefits included training of team members in the structured ‘Juran on Quality Improvement’ methodology; better teamwork amongst departments; increase in confidence and attitude of employees; and development of a paperless and person independent office system. Sterlite too has the IMC RBNQA criteria integrated into its process improvement methodology.