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trained employees

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certified employees of the customers

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EUR projects implemented that yielded
financial benefits

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Problems solved with PDCA method

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Implemented SMED projects

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Workplaces organised according to SD

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Equipment maintained according to TPM

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Implemented Kanban projects

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Implemented VACA and VSM projects

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Workplaces arranged according to 5S

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Implemented Kaizen ideas

The most effective Lithuanian companies were announced: Japanese Lean management principles bring millions in value

 

The following companies that achieved the biggest progress in six categories were awarded during this year’s Baltic Lean Forum: Šilutės baldai, Kurana, Baltic Petroleum, Girteka Logistics, Domeina and Baltic Food Partners. The winners were selected among the companies that most effectively apply Lean methods by assessing such criteria as last year’s results, productivity growth, plan implementation consistency and employee engagement.  

According to head of Lean LT Vidas Petraitis, Lean management philosophy that stems from the Japanese Toyota corporation has been applied in the best-known international corporations worldwide for 50 years. “The application of Lean management principles is based on continuous improvement, courage to recognise problems and skill to solve them. By awarding the best-performing companies we show the way that other Lithuanian companies could go seeking even better results,” Vidas Petraitis said.

Over EUR 2 million in value

One of the major award nominations – Performance of the Year – was awarded to Girteka Logistics. This company has been applying Lean methods since 2014. “In order to establish the winner in this category we must calculate the ratio of generated financial value and the number of employees. Clever choice of projects while solving major operation issues and consistent project implementation from the start generated value of over EUR 2 million,” Vidas Petraitis explained how Girteka Logistics was selected as a winning candidate.

Performance of the Year – was awarded to Girteka Logistics

During the first year alone improvements brought benefit of EUR 100 thousand

Start of the Year nomination was awarded to Vičiūnų įmonės group company Baltic Food Partners. The company started implementing Lean methods only last year, however, the improvements made over this first year already brought benefit of over EUR 100 thousand. Mr. Petraitis noted that this company deserved the Start of the Year title due to its determination to implement several ambitious projects and high level of discipline.

Bold idea of different positioning of production equipment

One of the key terms in Lean methodology is Kaizen which may be briefly described as fostering the culture of continuous improvement in a company. The application of Kaizen  principles aims at ensuring that each employee is engaged in the analysis of company’s processes and is actively proposing more effective ways of work organisation.  

This time Kaizen of the Year award was given to Šilutės baldai. One of the company’s employees suggested a way to facilitate operator’s work and to reduce unnecessary walks by eliminating the main reason – unreasonable positioning of machines. Mr. Petraitis commented that this idea was exceptional as it bravely raised a question whether the equipment positioning in the production area was indeed the most convenient for employees. The solution to this particular problem in the company led to certain improvements and renewed standardization of machinery operation which in turn resulted in 28 percent increase in productivity. The value generated after the implementation of these improvements was estimated at EUR 19 thousand.

46 reasons behind success  

Project of the Year title was granted to UAB Kurana. By introducing improvements, the company increased production volumes and generated value of almost EUR 71 thousand. Beside bringing great results, this project also led to the team’s improvement possibilities analysis and the discovery of 46 reasons affecting the final result. As the head of Lean LT explained, this title to the Kurana team was awarded for highly comprehensive analysis of the issue and engagement of all specialists in its solution.

Good results achieved through task completion at 87 percent level

Discipline of the Year prize was awarded to Baltic Petroleum. This company, operating in a highly dynamic environment, managed to retain high level of discipline and systematic improvement of its processes for the second year in a row. Baltic Petroleum team organised 8 annual project reviews and maintained 87 percent level of task completion.  

100 percent of employee engagement

Engagement of the Year prize this year went to UAB Domeina, one of the largest Lithuanian vegetable trade companies owning vegetable trademark Kietaviškių. According to Lean LT experts, the average level of Kaizen Teian process employee engagement in an organisation is 20–40 percent. They submit and implement improvement ideas. Previously the Engagement of the Year nomination was awarded to Biok laboratorija who had won 3 times in a row. The company’s employee engagement reached as much as 90 percent and implementation performance was significantly higher than that of its closest competitors. They even managed to reach and maintain 100 percent performance level. This year, however, brought serious competition. Winners of this category are selected on the basis of the number of employees actively engaged in improvement activities and not on the number of implemented Kaizen ideas. Such results pose a challenge even to the smaller organisations. Over the course of the year 2018 UAB Domeina engaged each employee (100 percent) in the implementation of at least one proposal. While the average number of proposals implemented over the year by each employee reached 2.2.

Award to the company operating abroad: generating benefit of EUR 500 thousand in the first year

This year, due to the expansion of Lean LT activity geography, the prize for the Start of the Year Abroad was introduced and it went to Eco Baltia Grupa, secondary raw material collection and recycling company from Latvia. This company is a strong leader in this category. It won this title by willingly and actively initiating improvement activities which generated great results estimated at over EUR 500 thousand first year alone.