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|Two years ago, AlliedSignal embarked on a journey to improve QUALITY. However, the focus of this endeavor was on the CUSTOMER and not the traditional product focus. It wasn't that a focus to improve product quality wasn't fruitful in the past. We've practiced it in the chemical industry for many years with significant results. But our industry today is in a survival mode and yesterday's way of doing business is simply not good enough. In the mining industry, we have to make lug strides in how we do business or face losing our customer base. As you are well aware, other parts of the world are importing our technology at a rapid rate. We must work smarter to stay ahead of our customers ever more demanding need for higher quality at lower prices. With this as a driver, throughout the Corporation we reviewed in depth how we support our customers to keep them competitive and sought to eliminate work which did not help them reach this goal. Our first year of emphasis was on tools: how to hold meetings, gather data, and how to make decisions. This sounds very basic, I know, but you can't begin to imagine how productive meetings can become when you start with an agenda and prework delivered days in advance, and agree at the start of the meeting what should get accomplished. In the second year, we applied these tools to our work processes. We mapped how we do our work, scrutinized each step for value to the customer, and then set to work on how we could do things better. The areas we concentrated on were customer linked commercialization of new products, manufacturing and materials management. Our discussion today will focus on the commercialization of new products.|