Sunday, March 2, 2008

Part Delivery printout

This was what the Buick material handlers used in the 90's for delivering parts to any given location. When Buick implemented this process it was the beginning of the end for General Motors. In the years previous to the "Pull System" a worker was given his daily print out (green sheet's) of their department and were in charge of that, and only that. Then if anything went wrong you, and only you, were responsible. Now with the "pull system" you no longer had any pride or control in your work and limited responsibility. We were modeled after the Nummi plant in Fremont, California, a joint venture between General Motor's and Toyota. Before the "pull system" I can't remember a truck driver shutting down the assembly plant for lack of parts, but after, it was a daily occurrence. Not only did management have to hire 137 more workers to turn us into Japanese, they also had to rent about 60 new fork trucks for them. The line foreman's hated this but upper management loved it because we had to sit on our truck's and wait for our next order, which placed each line worker in charge of parts delivery. This system made it hard for a truck driver to take long lunches which was always a sore spot with the big boss. So instead of a worker showing initiative and making his own breaks we sat and twiddled our thumbs. The workers on the assembly line are inherently jealous of the truck drivers so placing them in charge of parts delivery was like putting the fox in charge of the hen house. The end result was utter chaos at Buick City for most of the 90's as far as material (out of) control went. We even wore hats with this saying on them and I still have mine but Buick City is gone. Upper management knew this was a mistake but you do not rock the boat at General Motors. So you just blindly do what you're ordered whether right or wrong with the end result being, the president of the company Lloyd Reuss blaming the working man and the beat go's on. Link to Lloyd Reuss Quote

No comments: