Electrolux Major Appliance


Electrolux, a leading manufacturer of home appliances is implementing Proplanner’s process engineering solutions at half of its North American plants. Their primary purpose is to improve production efficiency, and responsiveness to schedule and line speed changes.

What initially drew Electrolux’s attention to Proplanner was its work instruction authoring and maintenance capabilities. Electrolux Manufacturing Systems (EMS) had defined a corporate standard for Job Detail Sheets (JDS) to be implemented at all facilities. The JDS provides clear communication to line operators of the tasks they are to perform and the safety equipment to be employed using images supplemented with minimal text. Electrolux recognized the need for a system, both to aid in the ease and consistency of authoring the JDS, and to automate updating the JDS when work assignments changed due to changes in the production rate or mix. Proplanner’s line balance driven work instruction system exactly fit the bill.

To improve line efficiency, and, effectively rebalance the line, accurate time standards for each work element are required. Electrolux is taking advantage of the robust time module provided in the Proplanner system to implement accurate standardized times for work elements that can be reused across plants and product lines to maximize direct labor efficiencies.

Concurrently, Electrolux is addressing the indirect labor and non-value added costs of material handling with Flow Planner, another Proplanner application.

At this point, Electrolux has deployed Proplanner at three plants with plans to expand to four additional North American Major Appliance plants next year. While it is still early in their implementation, results are promising. Naturally, the desire to realize such savings isn’t limited to North American Major Appliance at Electrolux. The heads of manufacturing and EMS are monitoring the success here with an eye towards additional opportunities worldwide. In fact, several Electrolux plants in Europe have now begun evaluating the Proplanner solutions for deployment at their facilities.