Operational Excellence Tools Blog

Operational Excellence tools (think Lean, Six Sigma, business process analysis), case studies, and items of interest from the US Industry Solutions Organization at Microsoft.

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  • Blog Post: Bill Gates on American Competitiveness

    From shopfloor.org : Microsoft Chairman and CEO Bill Gates appeared before the Senate Health Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee yesterday to testify on the topic of US competitiveness , a topic in which he is well-versed. Link to the full post at http://blog.nam.org/archives/2007/03/bill_gates_test...
  • Blog Post: 5s for the Information Worker

    Over the recent holidays, I embarked on a backup, cleanup, and Office 2007 upgrade for my PC. As part of the process, I realized that it would be a good idea to take a look at the 5s concept from an information worker perpsective, since e-mail and spreadsheets are the "tools" and "dies" used by many...
  • Blog Post: New IndustryWeek Webcast January 18: Emerson Lean - From Strategy to Execution

    Great webcast next week featuring Ray Keefe, VP-Manufacturing at Emerson Electric. Lean deployment at Emerson Electric goes beyond traditional shop floor thinking to reduce manufacturing cycle times and remove waste. Through the years, Emerson has expanded the scope of Lean from shop floor, to total...
  • Blog Post: 5s for the Information Worker: Example of how to use OneNote and Sharepoint to simplify and expedite team follow-up

    As an industry marketing manager at Microsoft, I face a challenge that I’m sure many teams share – how do I make it easy for a solution specialist team to follow-up with customers who have registered interest? This is important for 3 reasons: 1. This is a common breakdown point in the value stream...
  • Blog Post: Great read - Scoble's book on the impact of blogging on how corporations communicate with their customers

    I just started reading a great book on how blogging is changing both “the online conversation” and the way corporations relate to their customers via marketing, PR, and media channels. There's a lot in here on how Microsoft's decision to allow employee blogs early has helped to improve the company's...
  • Blog Post: New podcast of Lean segment from Feb 10-11 America's Business radio show

    Podcast of the Lean segment from last weekend's America's Business with Mike Hambrick show is now available at http://marcmonp.members.winisp.net/podcasts/AB_FEB10_SEG3%20Lean%20Segment-1.wma
  • Blog Post: New IndustryWeek webcast: Lean at Haldex featuring Microsoft Dynamics

    New IndustryWeek webcast featuring a Lean leader and an IT leader from Haldex, discussing "The Haldex Way," how and why the company embarked on a Lean path, and how IT and Microsoft partner Avanade has been an enabler in the process. This story focuses not on value stream mapping but on building visibility...
  • Blog Post: Interesting post about kaizen for Windows

    ...talking about designing the machine around the process and not vice versa, from Gemba Panta Rei at http://www.gembapantarei.com/2007/02/standard_work_needed_for_use_o.html . I know there are numerous improvement efforts in the product groups at Microsoft focused on the type of improvements mentioned...
  • Blog Post: How Software Can Help Your Lean Program – and You, the Lean Professional

    There is nothing like walking into the “war room” after a kaizen event. I usually see the same thing - butcher paper and sticky notes lining the walls from floor to ceiling. It is the result of people coming together to improve their value streams – the scene is impressive. What I’m less impressed with...
  • Blog Post: New case study - Gates Corporation enabling continuous improvement with Sharepoint

    New case study published on Gates Corporation - details how they are using various Microsoft technologies such as Sharepoint to standardize work, improve information access, and push KPIs and transparency throughout the organization. Excerpt: "To enforce consistent business processes, executive management...
  • Blog Post: New Manufacturing Business Technology article on lean replenishment

    ...shows that the application of lean thinking and tools to the supply chain is a hot area in the industry. Ultriva, quoted in the article, is a provider of electronic kanban and other solutions built on the Microsoft platform using tools such as SharePoint and SQL Server. Check out the article at...
  • Blog Post: Welcome to the Lean Tools Blog!

    This is a new blog started by the US Lean Manufacturing team at Microsoft. It is intended to highlight lean best practices, technology that can help you implement and manage lean projects, customer successes, and events/webcasts of interest to the lean community. Comments are welcome! Technorati Profile
  • Blog Post: 5s OneNote Example

    In a previous post I talked about using a shared OneNote workbook as a way of making continuously updated customer follow-up information available to field solution specialists on their desktop. Here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to set this up. Step 1: Create a new shared notebook...
  • Blog Post: Lean solutions director Ingo Heel and Just Born Foods profiled on NAM America's Business Radio show this weekend !

    Tune in to the National Association of Manufacturers weekly radio show America's Business with Mike Hambrick this weekend on Feb 10-11 for a segment on Lean Manufacturing. Interviews include Ingo Heel, Lean Solutions Director for Microsoft, and a profile of Just Born Foods' success story presented by...
  • Blog Post: Join me at the Lean Transformation Summit

    Join me in attending this conference...several of the companies speaking are using software and tools built on the Microsoft platform to enable their lean initiatives. As a former black belt for a service business at GE, I am particularly interested in hearing a current perspective on the success of...
  • Blog Post: Free Visio trial available from National Association of Manufacturers

    As you know Microsoft Visio is one of the primary tools that can help automate value stream mapping and process analysis. NAM is running a free trial offer for manufacturers, available at http://www.nam.org/s_nam/sec.asp?CID=202321&DID=234872