UK same day delivery is a vital cog in the giant machine of UK manufacturing and in this article we’ll explore some of the background.
Manufacturing in the UK is still a vibrant part of the economy. In 2019 (we’ll step by 2020 for obvious reasons) the annual output was worth £192 billion to the economy overall according to the Manufacturers Organisation MAKEUK. The automotive market alone in 2019 produced over 1.3 million cars, 78,270 commercial vehicles and 2.5 million engines. Eight out of 10 cars produced in the UK are exported overseas to 160 different markets worldwide. This alone generated turnover of nearly £79 billion. This chart here at smmt.co.uk is most enlightening
Big numbers are an instant indicator of the value to the wellbeing of the UK economy. But where does UK same day delivery come into this equation?
Some background first on modern manufacturing practices
Kaizen and JIT are two terminologies now commonplace in UK manufacturing but a relatively recent import from Japan. It was really through the 1980’s and ‘90’s that these processes and concepts started to be widely accepted as the way towards greater efficiency and profitability.
What is Kaizen?
Kaizen is the foundation from which these new methods arose.
“Kaizen is a Japanese term meaning “change for the better” or “continuous improvement.” It is a Japanese business philosophy regarding the processes that continuously improve operations and involve all employees. Kaizen sees improvement in productivity as a gradual and methodical process.
The concept of kaizen encompasses a wide range of ideas. It involves making the work environment more efficient and effective by creating a team atmosphere, improving everyday procedures, ensuring employee engagement, and making a job more fulfilling, less tiring, and safer.”.
In real everyday terms adopting Kaizen practices means that a company will be continually and gradually improving productivity by involving everyone in the organisation to help make the workplace more efficient. Small continuous improvements will lead to big changes and those changes can be suggested and brought to fruition by anyone in the organisation. In its early days this was quite a radical change of philosophy for most UK manufacturers, not least the automotive sector.
Toyota is a company name that will more often than not pop up when searching for information on Kaizen on the web. It was one of the earliest adopters in Japan. If everyone from the humblest warehouse operatives to the directors pulled together willingly with a common goal of excellence, they would achieve just that.
You may well be reading this and think that it is everyday practice now but a lot of those concepts were alien to the traditional Western manufacturing companies back in the 1950’s and ‘60s.
A key part of Kaizen improvement strategies is Just in Time or JIT as the commonly used acronym. Just in Time is exactly that – where it is needed just at the right time and should be at the very heart of a business.
But before we look at JIT in a little more depth, this case study closer is to home and demonstrates the power of Kaizen.
Leyland Trucks: Leyland produces trucks under the DAF brand in Leyland, Lancs. As well as production in the UK, DAF manufactures in Eindhoven in Netherlands and Westerlo in Belgium. Leyland and DAF are both part of the PACCAR Inc.
This is an excellent article if you wish to read in full about Leyland’s success working to Kaizen principles. However, this extract encapsulates the concept perfectly.
“Leyland Trucks has clear targets for continuous improvement and clear processes for building teams and encouraging involvement. Kaizen describes all those processes that involve Leyland’s people in day-to-day small step improvement. ‘The culture at Leyland in terms of the pride that the employees take in being the best is unique. A good example of this process occurred in May 2006 at the vehicle finishing part of the plant. This involved a High Impact Kaizen Event (HIKE) where six pairs of project leaders were chosen to work with employees in this area. Each member of the HIKE team wore a brightly coloured ‘high visibility jacket’ and they examined every area of work, talking to everyone on the section in an informal but systematic way. They encouraged everyone to identify workbased problems and possible solutions. Staff got together at working lunches to discuss work issues. Overall, the idea was to involve everyone so there would be no surprises. A senior manager was also on hand to work as a coach, helping and supporting the HIKE team.
…. More than 200 ideas for improvement were suggested by ground-level employees. The changes they suggested led to:
- a reduction in truck hours of over 17%
- 20% reduction in line-side materials (inventories)
- 23% reduction in walking (the distance that employees had to cover to carry out their work 57 miles per day in total)”
The role of UK same day delivery services in achieving manufacturing success
JIT explained briefly
Again JIT harks back to Japanese manufacturers. There was no actual defining moment for this adoption but general thinking is that post WW2 when resources were lean, investment cash virtually non-existent, manufacturing in Japan had to operate differently. They couldn’t afford to hold large inventories, nor was there space for large warehouses. There was little or no room for error in manufacturing – everything coming off the production line had to be right first time to ensure profitability. It quickly came to also be known at the Toyota Production System.
In the early days of Toyota, the company was able to meet the increasing challenges for survival through an approach that focused on people, plants and systems. Toyota realised that JIT would only be successful if every individual within the organisation was involved and committed to it, if the plant and processes were arranged for maximum output and efficiency, and if quality and production programs were scheduled to meet demands exactly.
JIT aims to reduce and eliminate:
- waste from overproduction
- waste of waiting time
- transportation waste
- processing waste
- inventory waste
- waste of motion
- waste from product defects
There are many excellent studies and articles on the web fully explaining JIT. Perhaps the Institute for Manufacturing is a good place to start if you wish to research further.
Where does UK same day delivery fit in?
Same day delivery ensures that the wheels of the production lines keep flowing in both day to day situations and in unforeseen emergencies.
Components need be moved from production facilities to the next step in the manufacturing chain on time. Under normal circumstances this can be re-planned and scheduled. But when the inevitable happens and machinery breaks down often it is only same day delivery that will stop the chain breaking down. Likewise urgent delivery of repair components is critical. Again, reliable and experienced same day delivery UK wide is called for.
Car parts come in a variety of sizes, shapes and materials and need to be appropriately packaged and comply with current regulations. We are extremely experienced handling dangerous or hazardous parts and continually advise our customers on how to comply with health and safety and expert packaging to ensure safe delivery of every single component including oils, fluids and batteries.
At Same Day Couriers Direct we have the experience, knowledge and skills to keep the customers satisfied.
Call us today on 0333 772 1010 for a quote and to see how we can help your business achieve manufacturing excellence.