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Planview and Argo Consulting: Helping Manufacturers Lean In

Published By Zach McDowell

Unplanned downtime costs industrial manufacturers an estimated $50 billion each year. What does an hour, a week, or a month of downtime cost your business? Adopting Lean principles and tools can greatly improve maintenance processes, which is why Planview and Argo Consulting have partnered together.  

As a global operations consultancy, Argo Consulting leads manufacturing firms worldwide through a results-focused process that improves target costs and drives sustainable performance. The company has long been a leader in Lean transformations, making the partnership with Planview a natural one. If you are a Planview customer, you know that Planview’s Enterprise Kanban solution (LeanKit) enables organizations to tangibly apply Lean principles to their work

argo consulting webinar with Planview

The Value of Lean-Kanban Manufacturing Approach 

Argo Consulting works with manufacturers to implement Lean manufacturing, which is the application of Lean practices, principles, and tools to the development and manufacture of physical products. Many manufacturers are using Lean manufacturing principles to eliminate waste, optimize processes, cut costs, boost innovation, and reduce time to market.  

Kanban boards and Lean metrics help organizations achieve their objectives to improve delivery processes and speed. Kanban helps to reinforce some of the key elements of Lean, including: 

  • Limiting work in process (WIP) 
  • Using a pull system (as opposed to a push system).  
  • Managing capacity to improve flow 
  • Visualizing work 

Planview LeanKit enables organizations to visually manage work using digital Kanban boards. The solution provides the flexibility to easily model any workflow process, regardless of complexity. Maintenance teams, for example, can then plan, organize, and prioritize upcoming work, execute in-progress work, and move it through to completion. 

Teams can also start to improve their process, with the ability to see blocked work, identify process bottlenecks, and address them as quickly as possible. With Lean analytics built in, teams can track and measure how quickly work moves through the process, using lead and cycle time metrics to identify opportunities for meaningful improvement

Argo Consulting and Planview in Action 

The partnership between Argo Consulting and Planview has already benefitted one joint customer. Flint Hills Resources produces a diverse range of fuels and ingredient products for many household goods. Based in Wichita, Kansas, the company has 5,000 employees working in 43 terminals, plants and refineries in the U.S. and Canada.  

Working with Argo Consulting, Flint Hills Resources moved from managing their complex workflows, processes, and staffing options on physical Kanban boards to embracing Lean manufacturing practices and tools. Today, with the combination of Argo’s expertise and Planview LeanKit, the Maintenance group has achieved greater workflow efficiency in their plants and shortened the company’s time to market.  

“Pull enabled our craftsmen to utilize their skills within their capabilities to go out and get things done! Leankit enables us to visualize pull for everyone in the plant and to sustain our Lean practices.” 

CJ Renegar, Vice President at Argo Consulting

They are able to respond faster, identify issues before they cause delays, and reduce costs by delivering work on time with fewer contractors and more insourced resources. As a result, they have decreased their cycle time from 180 days to 27 days and work order backlogs from around 9,000 to about 3,000. 

Webinar with Flint Hills Resources and Argo

Exactly how did Flint Hills Resources achieve such impressive results? Find out during a webinar on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at noon CDT. Brook Vickery, Vice President of Manufacturing at Flint Hills, and CJ Renegar, Vice President at Argo Consulting, will discuss the company’s Lean journey as well as: 

  • How to identify and address challenges across your manufacturing plants 
  • Strategies for your Lean implementation and roadmap 
  • Ways to leverage digital Kanban to increase your daily efficiency 
  • The benefits Flint Hills realized by adopting Lean-Kanban principles 

Save your spot today for the webinar.

About Argo Consulting 

Argo Consulting is a global operations consulting company dedicated to implementing lasting performance improvements with offices in Chicago, Canada and Germany and an active presence in more than 20 countries. Argo helps companies with significant and complex operating asset structures around the world, improve their profitability by increasing revenue and customer service and satisfaction while reducing operating costs, fixed overhead, and working capital. 

While working across most industries, Argo is experienced in and focused on five industries: transportation; oil and gas; industrial manufacturing; natural resource and basic materials manufacturing; and chemical processing. Additionally, Argo serves numerous Private Equity firms in their pre-acquisition due diligence and within the ongoing operations of their portfolio companies. 

About Planview AgilePlace

Learn more about how you can eliminate waste and continuously improve with Kanban, or simply start a free trial of Planview LeanKit for you and your team.

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Written by Zach McDowell Director, Product Marketing

Zach is a senior product manager for Planview PPM Pro and Planview Projectplace. He has managed teams across three continents at Planview and largely focuses on driving innovation for mid-market project management and PPM. He led one of the largest releases in Projectplace’s 20-year history and continues to grow and support its global user base.