Top Tubes Ltd

Taking Tube Further

Top Tubes Ltd are a Made in the Midlands Bronze Member

Steel tube producer reaps the benefits of continuous improvement

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Wednesbury based Top Tubes is now seeing the fruits of its continuous improvement programme in a multiplicity of ways, resulting in significant increases in production levels.

“Every person and every process is involved”, says Top Tubes MD Adam Bradley, “and the programme has brought in a good response from staff which has produced some interesting ideas.”

The programme is impacting in a number of ways.  Their computerised planning and production systems, which they began installing 12 months ago and which cleverly integrate quality functions with planning, inventory and despatch functions, are now yielding very positive benefits, not just in terms of quality consistency and the resultant reductions in wastage, but also in terms of manufacturing turnaround and despatch.

Furthermore, factory floor workshops, which ran during February and March, have also made a great contribution, both in team building and encouraging and developing problem finding, problem solving and analysis.

Top Tube’s adoption of Standard Operating Procedures have eliminated divergent working methods, reducing, for instance, changeover periods.  Meanwhile, the new zodiac on-site slitting line, as well as shortening the lines of communication, has increased steel strip output quite dramatically due to greater efficiency and reduced changeover periods.  This in turn has enabled Top Tubes to react to customer requirements much faster.

“These improvements and ongoing investments are really driving us forwards”, says Operations Manager Simon Moore, proudly displaying a new steel strip decoiler.

With the possibility of some challenging times ahead it will be
essential to maintain and improve quality and customer service, according to
ERW Sales Manager Craig Gibbs. “To stay ahead of the game”, says Craig, “you
can’t afford to stay still on service and quality, continuous improvement is
the only way forward”.