A leading global producer of polystyrene and ABS with multiple European plants. New private equity owned company established after a number of carve-outs from petrochemical producers. Multiple plants in Europe (Belgium, France, Italy, Germany) with assets undergoing significant investments. The client is a producer of both commodities and specialties with a growing share in medical grades.
The company was confronted with a number of customer complaints due to contamination of plastics for medical devices. Within the company there was a strong need for clear operational standards for the manufacturing of polystyrene for medical applications, but also for an improvement scan at the multiple sites. There was a clear sense-of-urgency to produceren according tot standards without contamination risks. Gwynt was asked to execute these scans for three plants in Germany, because of our experience with operational excellence and our experience with the processes and assets at the client.
First of all, a transparent company standard was established for the production of plastics for medical applications. Usage was made of standards of customers and civil authorities to achieve the required quality and safety performances (customers, ISO, GMP, …) For each site Critical Control Points (CCPs) and process risks (relevant for these grades) were investigated. Procedures and processes were modified. Gap analyses were executed and for each site an improvement plan was made to close the gaps. Much attention was given to management and employee awareness. Specific training courses were developed and executed to achieve the needed quality improvements.
The sense-of-urgency and buy-in have been created to solve problems and to avoid contaminations. For each site an audit-report was approved including detailed actions and investments including gap-and FMEA analyses. Quick wins were realised on systems, installations, organisation and behaviour. This has resulted in much lower customer claims and related financial impact.