Kou Kimura, currently MD of the Chennai (India) plant, will return to Japan to take up a senior position within NML’s Manufacturing and Industrial Engineering Division.
Japan Management Association (JMA; Chairman: Norio Yamaguchi) has founded the GOOD
FACTORY AWARDs to commend Japanese companies’ factories for achieving results in their
kaizen activities, such as raising productivity and improving quality in manufacturing.
The first award winners were the following five companies: Aizu Olympus Co., Ltd.; Toshiba
Information Equipment (Philippines) Inc.; Toyota Motor Asia Pacific Eng. & Mfg./Toyota Motor
Thailand; Fuji Xerox of Shenzhen Ltd.; and PT. Yamaha Music Manufacturing Asia.
(For an outline of the GOOD FACTORY AWARDs, see p. 2.)
Olympus Corporation is pleased to announce that Aizu Olympus Co., Ltd. (Aizu Olympus) has won the Good Factory Award presented by the Japan Management Association (JMA). Aizu Olympus, the Medical Business Group of Olympus, is primarily involved in the manufacture of medical endoscopes.
Introduced in 2011, these prestigious awards will be presented each year to factories that are regarded as having set an example of excellence for manufacturing in Japan. The judges will examine various examples of organizational innovation initiatives at factories in Japan and throughout Asia, including productivity and quality improvements. The wide-ranging selection criteria include processes, success factors, workplace know-how, improvements in workers' awareness, and social contribution.
There are four Good Factory Award categories. The award won by Olympus is the Monodzukuri Process Innovation Award, which is presented to a factory that has comprehensively enhanced and strengthened manufacturing processes in its factories and business sites through initiatives in such areas as industrial engineering (IE)*1 improvement, information technology (IT), quality assurance, process improvement, supply chain management (SCM)*2 improvement, just-in-time (JIT)*3 production, procurement innovation, logistics innovation and automation.
*1 Industrial engineering (IE) is a general field of engineering encompassing the design, implementation, administration and improvement of systems to ensure the effective utilization of production resources, including human resources, facilities and information.
*2 Supply chain management (SCM) is a management method targeted toward the improvement of management efficiency through the integrated management of flows of goods from the procurement of materials through to later stages, including production, distribution and retailing.
*3 Just in time (JIT) production involves the production of the products needed by customers, in the quantities required, and at the times required.
Nissan ‘Strike Zone’ Improves Ergonomic Practices
Nissan is getting down to the nitty gritty of improving its already industry-leading efficiency, says Hidetoshi Imazu, Nissan’s senior vice president-Manufacturing & Industrial Engineering.
That includes a new measure of worker ergonomic perfection Nissan has dubbed the “strike zone,” which Imazu says is a precisely defined body-movement area where a worker most efficiently can complete a given task with the least amount of strain.
Imazu says his company’s manufacturing engineers now are attempting to have every assembly line task performed in the strike zone, which not only eases effort but, ultimately, aids efficiency.
The strike-zone concept is proving particularly helpful in Japan, whose workforce is aging,