IN-FAB, Inc. became aware of the E3: Economy, Energy, and Environment initiative, which is a collaboration of federal, state and local agencies leveraging their resources to help manufacturers be more competitive and sustainable. In Indiana, the partnering organizations include: Purdue Manufacturing Extension Partnership (Purdue MEP), Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM), IUPUI Industrial Assessment Center (IAC).
As a company dedicated to exceeding customer requirements through continuous improvement of their processes, IN-FAB, Inc. felt the E3 program would be an ideal opportunity to review their operation and identify areas of improvement.
To meet the E3 project goals, a suite of technical assessments was provided to IN-FAB, Inc. These services include:
- A one-day on-site Energy Assessment provided by the Industrial Assessment Center;
- A full report analyzing results of the Energy Assessment, with priority recommendations;
- A two-day Lean Value Stream Mapping Training & Assessment provided by Purdue MEP;
- A two-day Environmental W.A.S.T.E. Stream Mapping Training & Assessment provided by Purdue MEP;
- A one-day Carbon Footprint Assessment provided by Purdue MEP;
- A half-day Introduction to Energy Management Systems training provided by Purdue MEP; and
- A project closeout meeting to discuss the final E3 report and strategize next steps.
The key Lean opportunities identified resulted in a potential savings of $1,208,247. A significant portion of these savings were realized through a reduction in raw material inventory from 18 days down to 9 days, better scrap metal practices, and increased sales due to a more efficient layout.
The W.A.S.T.E. Stream opportunities resulted in a potential savings of over $214,000. A few of the opportunities identified include switching to water-based paint to reduce hazardous material, changing plant layout to lower propane usage, and changing welding wire to reduce emissions.
The recommendations set forth for IN-FAB, Inc. will result in a reduction in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions of 42 Metric tons of CO2eq. This is equivalent to annually removing 9 passenger vehicles from the road, or switching 1,520 incandescent lights to LED.
“Going into the E3 Program, we were not convinced the benefits would outweigh the cost and time we were investing. However, we were staggered by the results, both in knowledge gained and money saved. The Value Stream and W.A.S.T.E. Stream Mapping exercises taught us how to look with fresh eyes to find and eliminate non-value added activities. Instructors were extremely knowledgeable about alternate materials and processes that would benefit the company. The E3 Program has driven us to examine and implement several sizeable process changes. Not only will these changes benefit the environment and our employees, but it will also allow us to be much more efficient and realize savings that far outweigh the small cost of the program.”
-Darin McCullough and Jay McCullough – Owners of IN-FAB, Inc.Download PDF