Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-28-2017

Disciplines

Bioresource and Agricultural Engineering | Industrial Technology

Course Number and Title

TSM 416: Technology Capstone

Department

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Major

Agricultural Systems Technology (Waterman); Industrial Technology (Yaley, O'Brien, Wiegert)

Instructors

Joseph R. Vanstrom and Jacek A. Koziel

Problem Statement

Sioux City Brick is a manufacturing company that produces four main products in various colors. The products include a residential and architectural brick, brick chips, and thin brick. Sioux City Brick employs over 100 employees and corners of the business extend from Iowa, Nebraska, to Minnesota, and South Carolina. However they service a much larger area including Canada.

Currently the company is experiencing long loading times, a cramped and cluttered yard, and fork lift operators spend a lot of time organizing and moving inventory around. All are a result of their being an excess amount of leftover brick. This brick comes from the remains of orders as well as faulty batches and almost all of the excess brick can meet at least one of many secondary uses so the company tends to accumulate it. For the time being their yard operations are lacking standardization from operator to operator, as well as a lack of accountability throughout their operators. The company is currently scheduling more orders and adding to the waitlist for this year and next year’s production schedule. Right now this facility is operating at a fractional value of their full capabilities regarding their yard operation and infrastructure of organization. With the utilization of our suggested SOP we feel that we can assist them with increasing standardization throughout the west lot which could easily translate throughout the facility. A well-organized brickyard creates several opportunities including more inventory space, possibility to start and fill more orders annually, and a higher inventory handling efficiency. Overall the yard is affecting the company by contributing to excessive product transportation which results in a form of overprocessing. Through implementation and adjunct application of our SOP Sioux City Brick will be able to benefit from standardization of work and how operators are facilitating yard activities. This will allow them to identify areas needing improvement in the future this will also allow for proper measuring of yard activities and efficiencies. This standardization will open pathways for future projects within the capstone area or within the company.

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