Increase Sales through Reduced Lead Times

July 26, 2011 at 10:34 am Leave a comment


At the beginning of the recent economic downturn, a company was looking for a competitive edge in response to declining sales. As a leading supplier to the home furnishings industry, product pricing and quality were already as competitive as possible. The only part of the sales closure trio to improve upon was service by reducing the lead time between order receipt and shipment, which was 12 weeks or more.

Reduced lead times on built to order products up to 50%, from 12 weeks to 6 weeks, on key items, from receipt of order to shipment of product.

Leading a cross-functional team and using Lean Six Sigma tools and initiatives, I developed and executed the product manufacturing flow and process improvements that eliminated lead time waste. We implemented a strategy that reduced these lead time wastes and allowed the manufacturer to be more responsive to customer demands. In this respect, excessive lead times are an inefficiency that carries with it a high cost, one of which is excess inventory. Excessive lead time not only reduces the ROI on manpower and raw material and finished inventories, but it is a major obstacle in the pursuit of customer satisfaction and revenue growth. With the implementation of these strategies, sales increased, and, shorter lead times were sustained, and the company quickly established a reputation as having the fastest order turn time in the industry.

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Entry filed under: Dan Trojacek.

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