Case Study 17 : P.T.SASAKURA INDONESIA
Indonesia plant introduced Asprova to build a platform of in-house communication from a coaching standpoint
-P.T.SASAKURA INDONESIA –
P.T. SASAKURA INDONESIA mainly manufactures the marine fresh water generators for ships. Its parent company has 50 to 60% share of the international market and has nearly 90% share in Japan. Because of its cheaper production costs, as compared to Japan, Indonesia plant was built, which consist of two Japanese and 70 Indonesian staff.
President Shikata communicates with local staff using coaching skills and has been trying to create a work environment where each member is able to act according to one’s initiative. Indonesia plant is faced with various problems associated with the multicultural background of its staff. We interviewed President Shikata who decided to install Asprova from a coaching standpoint to solve these problems, and also Mr. Ikura and Mr. Yamamoto from PT. INDONUSA COMPUTER SYSTEM (ICS) who supported Asprova installation in Indonesia.
Asprova was installed to instill in local staff an awareness of backward scheduling
The difference in “thoughts” rather than language is the problem between Japanese and Indonesian staff. One can easily assume that it is necessary to plan based on a dead line (backward), but it is often hard to do so. To overcome this trouble, Asprova was installed.
Although it is often forward planning at the factory, Asprova can easily design a backward plan. Once a local staff becomes aware of the difference from the current way by carefully studying the backward planning, there arises a necessity of discussion with co-workers or a manager. President Shikata says, “the discussion is the first step of spontaneous improvement”, and having this discussion was indeed his true purpose.
Introduction of Asprova brought in three new perspectives Activation of in-house communication
An ability to schedule backwards, determine what needs to be done now and hold discussions, rather than doing work at hand.
2. Pointing out failures in the process
Even if their neighbors have obvious troubles, local staff tend not to point them out. Therefore Asprova created an environment where the process is independent of a person, so that staff can simply point out failures in the process, not a person’s errors, and review them.
3. Viewing from outside
Making in-house manufacturing process open to customers by Asprova can earn customers’ trust, which further creates a customer-friendly plant.
From forward scheduling to backward scheduling
Cut deeply into work environment
Since Indonesia plant has already achieved a satisfactory quality, the client concerns about the following two points: i) the ability to reliably obtain the materials, including overseas, and ii) the process management capability to keep delivery dates. “Visualization” of the in-house process and progress helps to earn customers’ trust. Therefore Asprova was installed.
One of the aims of “visualization” was to change the local staff’s perspectives from forward to backward. The forward scheduling is applied not only to the manufacturing processes but to many other things. For example, Japanese tend to look at the near future, such as 5 years later, and decide what should be done now. On the other hand, Indonesian tend to think the future is made up of the accumulation of daily life.
President Shikata assumes this difference in the way of thinking is due to “harvest of crops”. Because Japan has four seasons, crops are harvested in autumn every year before winter comes. Therefore, the times of planting are determined retrospectively based on the autumn harvest (backward). On the other hand, there are no distinct seasons in Indonesia, where farmers grow 2 to 2.5 crops per year. They have no proper time of harvesting, therefore it is unnecessary to plan tight schedules for planting retrospectively. Under the circumstances, to penetrate the backward scheduling, it is important to cut deeply into the work environment by making a backward plan with Asprova which allows the local staff to get familiar with the backward scheduling.
The challenges of Asprova installation
The project manager of Asprova installation named a local staff who is thoroughly experienced in all processes was educated with Asprova handling by the local staff from ICS.
The implementation of Asprova was accompanied by challenges. To control the process by Asprova, the procedures previously performed based on the experiences must be broken down into simple steps. As the man-hour was not appropriately organized, it took an immense amount of time to gather information and organize them. Moreover, it is also hard to keep the extracted data up to date, but each person in charge realizes the importance of this effort to make a good system and faces the challenges. As a manager, it is necessary to set a challenging goal and high moral for the staff, so that they can continue to have high motivation.
ICS, which is in the same position as P.T.SASAKURA INDONESIA, and Mr. Yamamoto from ICS, who is in the same position as President Shikata, were reliable partners for President Shikata, with whom he could share the challenges. President Shikata says, “they were great support for me”.
The launch of Asprova took three to four months, and it visualized the in-house process and progress. The meetings mostly consisting of the local staff, to talk about the scheduling results increased after the installation of Asprova, significantly changing the work environment. “By changing the way of thinking, the more the discussion is held, the better the quality will be. The all-too-common issue of inventory reduction and lead time reduction are easily achieved”, says President Shikata. He expects Asprova to become a platform of in-house communication.
■Partners in charge
PT.INDONUSA COMPUTER SYSTEM
Mr. Rommy (left)
Mr. Yamamoto (right)
Indonesia plant introduced Asprova to build a platform of in-house communication from a coaching standpoint.
Asprova was installed to instill in local staff an awareness of backward scheduling.