Helping Businesses Get Lean

The Center for Manufacturing Systems, directed by Wayne Chaneski, offers technical assistance to New Jersey's manufacturing businesses.

More that 100 New Jersey manufacturing firms benefited this year from the technical assistance programs of the Center for Manufacturing Systems (CMS). The center, directed by Wayne Chaneski, offers services that range from identifying short-term productivity improvement opportunities to long-term engagements geared toward streamlining entire operations. CMS also assisted companies with product design and prototyping, process development, plant layout, machining of complex parts, and training in modern manufacturing concepts.
Training in lean manufacturing is one of the center's most popular services. Lean techniques -- inventory reduction, reduced lead time, continuous flow, increased flexibility -- are critical to the small and mid-sized manufacturing businesses that are the center's clients. One project for Purepac Pharmaceutical, an Elizabeth-based manufacturer of generic drugs, focused on reducing setup time -- the time a machine is out of service for changeover between the end of one run and the beginning of another. The CMS team videotaped an actual machine setup, then helped employees to review the process and identify solutions to problems. One department also got 5S training (Sort, Set-in-Order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain) for improving efficiency by reorganizing workspace.