Original Date: 08/15/1991
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Total Excellence at MagneTek
The Total Excellence at MagneTek (TEAM) program, established in 1990, is aimed at implementing total quality management (TQM) throughout all aspects of MagneTek Defense Systems (MDS) operations. Initial training was conducted a TQM consultant, who was retained to help institute the program. A quality council was established and policy statements developed and published by management from each functional area to demonstrate commitment. A process for developing quality improvement plans was established and used to produce the quality strategic plan for 1991.
Concurrent with this process, a top-down commitment and approach to TQM was developing at MagneTek Inc., the corporate parent of MDS. A full-time corporate executive was appointed at the corporate level to implement TQM throughout worldwide MagneTek companies, an organization totaling 16,000 associates. A corporate executive committee composed of representatives from each of the corporation's four business sectors was also established to set policy. MDS is one of four business sectors. Each sector is represented on a Team Implementation Committee (TIC) responsible for implementing corporate TQM policy at the plant level. The Local Implementation Team (LIT) at each site is comprised of the plant general manager and his or her direct reportees. Beginning in January 1992, TQM training was provided to top managers at the TIC and LIT levels to achieve management buy-in and provide a core group of trained managers to facilitate implementation from corporate down through the local levels.
At MDS, facilitators were assigned at each plant. They each attended training and are now facilitating a 20-hour team training program for each plant. Each LIT developed its own charter and curriculum of courses to meet the needs of their particular site. The charter of the Anaheim LIT is based on "the integration of quality and management methods, concepts, and beliefs into the culture of MDS to bring about continuous improvement and customer satisfaction."
MDS views TEAM as vital to its survival in a declining defense marketplace and has implemented approaches that are already paying off. Cellular manufacturing has been instituted with significant improvements in productivity, higher quality, lower costs, and reduced cycle times. Changing the traditional manufacturing organization to project teams has produced a flatter, more flexible production organization. The company is also identifying new business opportunities and developing strategic partnerships.
Employees have been given greater control of their work and are contributing to improving manufacturing operations with impressive results. In accomplishing these improvements, MDS has relied on the use of consultants and commercial training programs but their success has resulted from taking the best from experts such as Deming, Juran, Crosby, and others, adapting it to the company's unique requirements and building its own philosophy for continuous improvement.
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