Rybnik Engineering Center (REC) is the new R&D center developed by Tenneco in Poland. One of the key ideas behind the REC is to develop it based on the lean engineering principles.
In a first step a white paper was established and agreed upon with senior management. This white paper consisted of:
a set of objectives derived from this vision
and a road map to reach this vision
The creation of REC has been articulated around 3 major themes:
PERSONNEL - It is about how to identify and hire people that will fit into our lean culture. A further challenge is to then train and mentor the people. A similar model known as the inverse-T at Toyota was implemented. Lastly, a network of partners has been established and integrated in the Tenneco development processes.
PROCESSES - Both engineering and cross functional processes have been systematically reviewed or new ones developed. With the help of the tool “Value Stream Mapping” the waste in existing processes was identified and dramatically decreased.
TOOLS AND TECHNOLOGIES - Hereby we differentiate between soft and hard tools. The soft tools are:
Communication and alignment tools. Visual management is key enabler at REC.
Problem solving. The lessons learned are collected into guidelines and standards
Reflection events and Kaizen.
For the hard tools, some very unique technologies have been developed. A Knowledge Based Manufacturing and Engineering system is under development on the basis of a common software.