Knowledge Transfer Partnerships help PMS improve processes and increase production

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Knowledge Transfer Partnerships help PMS improve processes and increase production

From one success to another

PMS Diecasting recruited KTP associate Luke Scott, who exceeded all of their expectations with improvements to processes, health and safety and efficiency, leading to a 40% production increase. This led to the founding of a sister company, GoTools Ltd, which designs and manufactures performance tooling. Luke has now joined PMS as a permanent member of the team.

Oskar Solvason was brought on through another KTP to introduce and embed improvements in the operation and management of high value zinc diecasting processes, thereby increasing quality, financial and delivery performance.

Creating a lasting legacy

By embedding advanced process control techniques through the KTP, the company has instigated valuable changes to their production line, including different temperature levels and a better understanding of variables involved in the process. Their ability to manipulate and control these variables has resulted in increased productivity and reduced scrap levels.

Black belt achieved, huge savings made

Oskar’s academic supervisor developed a CPD lean/six sigma course which was delivered to PMS employees, in which all participants undertook an improvement project within their working environment. KTP associate Oskar excelled at these in-company projects, and also helped the participants to execute, evaluate and measure the improvements. Oskar obtained his black belt in six sigma training, meaning he’s capable of leading improvement projects himself.

The first four improvement projects that Oskar finished showed annual total savings of £61,763. Savings from the following six projects could be in the range of £9k–17k per annum, with the potential for similar savings on 10 comparable products.

‘The KTP has clearly brought some measurable improvements to our operation, but it has also helped us to take the management and cultural step changes we needed to move to the next level.’ - Gordon Panter, Managing Director   

Challenge becomes opportunity

The company had a full relocation of all its staff and equipment to newer, larger premises. This move wasn’t anticipated in the initial stages of the KTP – however, the timing of the move enabled Oskar and the academic team to implement some of the proposed process management and control changes more effectively, and allowed Oskar to implement some of the lean manufacturing principles he had learned, influencing the layout of the new factory. The changes have created increased capacity, which will provide further opportunities for product development.

Oskar was promoted to Logistics and Continuous Improvement Manager of PMS Diecasting, a role created for him. Oskar has now taken over running and organising shifts from the operations manager, and most of the production staff now report to him. In his role, he is responsible for significant improvements to the quality and delivery of PMS products.

‘KTPs provide unparalleled opportunities for industry- academia collaboration.’ - Gordon Panter, Managing Director, Just one

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