Maple Hill Engineering offers continuous improvement training and facilitation. What sets us apart is the wide variety of processes our staff has helped improve over the last twenty years. We have worked in office settings, retail, medical, custom home goods, food service, information management, distribution, and manufacturing. We are able to leverage cross-industry practices to make your organization run better!
Examples of processes we have positively impacted include:
- Customer-facing processes
- Customer flow
- Accounts payable / receivable processes
- Inventory management
- Document management systems
- Customer flow
- Factory flow
- Patient flow
- and more….
Do you deal with volumes of people, products, materials, and information? We can help you streamline these processes.
Do you have multiple sites that all seem to do things differently? We can facilitate standardization at a level that makes sense for your organization.
Struggling with how to effectively communicate the many processes your organization has? We can help implement online systems to store, convey and manage these processes.
Some examples of our efforts:
Retail – Helping a multi-location retail business document and standardize key processes in preparation for growth. To document a process, you must understand it. As our team learns and documents the processes, we frequently identify opportunities to get the job done within less time, with fewer resources and fewer mistakes. Some of the processes we have addressed include cash management and reporting, ordering products, transferring products between stores, physical inventory and receiving.
Custom Home Goods – A rapidly growing business in Indianapolis struggles with employee communications and accurate order fulfillment. Our team helped them design a trigger system. For example: Who first comes into contact with the customer? What information should this individual gather from the customer? Where should the information be stored? As this information is handed off to the next employee, what is the ‘trigger’ that alerts the employee to take action. What is the trigger for the next employee in the chain and the next employee and so on? Once these triggers are defined, the companies online goods management system is re-designed to help facilitate these triggers.
Manufacturing – We have many manufacturing examples! One of our favorite activities is redesigning facilities to improve flow. It is common for us to reduce people, product, material, and information movement by 20 to more than 70%.
In the example, below we reduced material flow from ~1 mile to 1500 feet. It once took more than 4.5 hours to produce one product. We reduced this to 1 hour. Hundreds of square feet of floor space were freed up. Communication amongst employees was significantly improved.
Offices – Helping owners find the ‘right size’ property for their needs. Designing layouts to improve patient and bedding flow and improve patient privacy. Managing construction of new facilities. Investigation into proper permitting to help customers reduce annual property taxes; a current customer now saves $3500 annually. In addition, we can help customers make choices that reduce energy costs; a recent customer was able to reduce power bills by ~$1100 annually.
Warehousing – Staging high volume products close to customer service counter for faster service. Freeing up shelf space. Empowered employees to implement changes that work for them!
Distribution – Working with employee teams to address a multitude of business improvements; accounts payable, more efficient use of existing software, reduce amount of time to load trucks for daily deliveries, design systems to manage large orders.
Food Service – Study of the customer serving process, development of plans to expedite it and hands-on assistance until process works smoothly. For instance, one customer went from serving a sandwich in 12 seconds to 3.
Study of work content and flow. Redesign of kitchen layouts. Design of cooking preparation tools reducing process time; saved chef 90 minutes on orders of 300 goodies.
Product Quality – Spoke with 100 customers to understand their frustration with the product. Changed the design and saved the company $3 million in service calls.
Product Design – Facilitated workshops with product development teams to reduce the number of parts in a product. These efforts reduce the number of technical drawings required, number of suppliers, the tooling investment, the cost of logistics, and much more…saving companies millions. Ask about our Lean Design workshops!
Online Status Monitors – Leveraging real-time data in a company’s database to convey performance stats in a simple way to leadership and employees. Monitors (or dashboards) replace the cumbersome efforts of manually gathering data, summarizing it and reporting it.
Global Process Standardization – Helped a Fortune 500 company global define, standardize and train a technical design analysis process (Failure Mode Effects Analysis – FMEA).
Global Process Architecture – Organizations have multiple processes. Many of these processes are linked. We design online process architectures to store, manage and convey the relationships between these processes.
What Our Customers Have to Say About our Services
“Maple Hill’s technical skills, experience and people skills provided immediate value. For example, Bobbie Gilman’s efforts have shown us how to reduce a clients product movement by 40%, freeing up 18% of labor they can re-allocate to business growth.” – Robert Werner, President Edwards Group International
“We are now able to serve more customers in less time. This equates to more profit. Maple Hill also helped us address a significant safety issue.” – Tom S., Food Service Manager
“Bobbie’s expertise and knowledge of process flow design and layout has allowed us to expand our offerings to clients, both current and future. Her meticulous eye for detail, her tenacity and above all, her ability to connect with people, have been a tremendous value for our business.” – Jonda Vance, The Edwards Group International