It’s no secret that process improvement has played a crucial role in serving the military for decades, but this recent process improvement success might be one of the most surprising of them all.
Out of fourty-four project nominees, the Process Support Division Black Belt Team at Letterkenny Army Depot recently won the Army Efficiency Award for their improvements made to a process that will result in $4.5M in cost avoidance over the next five years.
So how did they do it? By literally letting paint dry longer.
By increasing the paint’s drying time that is applied to the RG-31 (an upgraded Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle), paint blistering decreased and rework was reduced.
This reduced the direct labor hours for each RG-31 vehicble by 34%!
Utilizing process improvement tools to help identify and address root causes that were causing delays in the RG-31 final paint process, the team was also able to decrease the lead time for paint preparation on the vehicle.
The Army recognized Letterkenny for its efforts at the 10th annual 2017 Army Lean Six Sigma Excellence Award Program.
The Lean approach continues to create change and develop a culture of continuous improvement at Letterkenny Army Depot, sharing that it’s not just a program, it’s a lifestyle.