Original Date: 09/14/1998
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Manufacturing Methods Plan
In the past, MIL-STD-1528A required companies to develop documentation which illustrated their production capabilities to customers. Like others, Raytheon Missile Systems Company (RMSC) invested significant time and resources to meet this requirement. The company averaged 20 months to develop an initial plan, and an additional 200 hours per year for updates. Because the plan was done at least six months prior to the actual manufacturing, most of the information consisted of best guesses and estimates. With the elimination of this military standard, RMSC no longer needed to submit a manufacturing methods plan as part of its proposal. This change, coupled with an enterprise shift toward agile manufacturing and the development of Centers of Excellence, served as a catalyst for the development of a generic manufacturing plan at RMSC.
To accomplish this task, RMSC began by documenting all of the processes and controls used throughout the company. The company designed its Manufacturing Methods plan as an efficient way to demonstrate production readiness by focusing on the actual manufacturing processes rather than on program specific data or process outputs. This eliminates the need to recreate the document since it is applicable to all programs, and satisfies customer inquiries on production capability. RMSC has also facilitated the plan’s use throughout the company by making it easily accessible via RMSC’s network.
Since 1996, the Manufacturing Methods plan has been included in every renewal contract at RMSC. As a result, the company reduced its production readiness documentation from hundreds of pages per program to a standardized 35- page document applicable to all programs. The company also achieved more than $300,000 in cost savings on contracts through September 1998, and anticipates continual savings of over $100,000 annually. The Manufacturing Methods plan has been accepted by most production programs within RMSC, and is credited with providing internal and external customers with a better understanding of RMSC’s production processes.
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