Summary

Tetra Pak is a leading food packaging and processing company with more than 25,000 employees across the globe. The company has a very mature Continuous Improvement practice having worked with TPM, Lean and Six Sigma for more than 20 years.

“We want to be able to say how much loss we get in our process if the person doesn’t have the proper skills or is not trained properly, so making that link is very important for us.”

Johan Lantz
Global World Class Manufacturing Integration Manager

The company’s early World Class Manufacturing efforts focussed on optimizing the machines. Improving how they maintain and manage equipment is an obvious place to start for most companies embarking on a TPM journey. However, once optimized, it becomes harder to continue to drive improvements since the most significant percentage of your losses will be tied to ‘soft factors’ like man and method.

Fundamental to Tetra Pak’s approach is connecting worker skills and loss. By making that connection, priorities become more apparent. In Johan’s words, “We want to be able to say how much loss we get in our process if the person doesn’t have the proper skills or is not trained properly, so making that link is very important for us.”

The Operations Knowledge Management project was launched to reduce losses across all the sites in a systematic and data-centered manner that supported workers. The company knew that its traditional, manual approach to managing knowledge and analyzing data had limitations. Disconnected local systems, written SoPs, and skills tracking in Excel made it challenging to link losses to skills gaps and was incredibly time-consuming.

wcm-journey

Poka emerged as a solution that could address these challenges and more.

Johan shared, “We want to implement one intuitive operations knowledge management platform for all our packaging solutions manufacturing sites, where the workers on the shop floor are empowered to drive the journey. We want to improve employee engagement with a bottom-up approach where they can create the SOPs and improve their knowledge without waiting for someone.”

To date, the company has launched Poka at 18 of 56 global manufacturing sites, with an average of 2 new sites coming online every month. Workers now have access to more than 20,000 work instructions and troubleshooting solutions with a quick scan of a QR code on the shop floor.

"They created a full loop and completely eradicated this [knowledge gap]. A reduction of 87.4%—a tangible improvement here.”

Johan Lantz
Global World Class Manufacturing Integration Manager

Commenting on the challenges of managing that volume of information, Johan commented, “A normal site can have around 800-2000 work instructions, but to ensure that the right people get the right information at the right time, that’s tricky. Poka can support us because of the Viewing Reports feature.”

Johan points to Tetra Pak’s Ponta Grossa, Brazil site as an example of how Poka is helping to eliminate critical knowledge gaps in production. “Through Poka,” Johan explains, “they were using the Skills and Forms features together, in combination with SOPs and videos. They created a full loop and completely eradicated this [knowledge gap]. A reduction of 87.4%—a tangible improvement here.”

skill-loss

Johan emphasizes that Poka is a complement to, not a replacement for, many of the core systems in place at Tetra Pak, like the company’s LMS and maintenance systems. The difference is that Poka is built to support frontline workers—to make it as easy as possible for them to do their tasks and, as a result, contribute to continuous improvement.