Original Date: 09/14/1998
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Best Practice : Knowledge Center Southwest
The Knowledge Center Southwest (KCSW) is a unique, one-stop resource designed to provide a collection of powerful knowledge-based tools that aid employees and teams in their quest to achieve total customer satisfaction. Many of Raytheon Missile Systems Company’s (RMSC’s) top processes are outgrowths of this resource, and represent keys to future performance at the Tucson facility.
RMSC developed KCSW as a way to improve cross-functional team integration and communication. Based on General Motor’s Knowledge Center, KCSW was tailored to the missile systems development and manufacturing industry. At the core of KCSW are four tenets of operation, which represent the foundation for successfully deploying improvement tools and processes. These tenets are:
Structured Methodology An organized, proven approach to systems development that can be applied to all product lines.
Common Tools and Processes Core tools which provide a common framework for benchmarking and evaluating performance.
Agile Creative Environment A flexible environment that provides the atmosphere, resources, and information needed to maximize innovation and creativity.
Rapid Learning A repeatable cycle for obtaining feedback, making improvements, and creating a consistent, successful process.
As a multi-functional center, KCSW supports teaming facilities; provides product and hardware displays; maintains a tool and process library; features workshops (e.g., six sigma, QFD, design to cost); offers job-in-line training; and operates as the JACME2T office. One of KCSW’s most significant capabilities is process tailoring. Here, KCSW provides a system for tailoring enterprise-common processes for specific program and product applications, such as integrated process architecture, new business capture, product development, and program management.
RMSC relied on KCSW models during the proposal phase for its AIM-9X program. In this situation, the agile initiative helped move inventory turns from five to 14, while the six sigma initiative reduced defects by approximately 50%. By providing the proper environment and resources to foster agile designs and manufacturing processes, KCSW plays an important role in RMSC’s quest to achieve total customer satisfaction.
For more information see the
Point of Contact for this survey.