Friday Fact – Donating efficiency and productivity!

Do you know, the renowned Toyota instead of signing a big cheque, donated continuous improvement?

The Food Bank – New York is a non-profit social service organization which arranges food and support for the needy/ homeless people of New York. It is the largest anti-hunger charity which feeds approximately 400,000 people every day.

The Food Bank at first was a little hesitant with the offer. But after presenting the details to Food Bank about efficiency improvement and how Toyota can help them with it, the Food Bank for New York City was more than happy to hear what Toyota could offer.

So, what all changes did Toyota made by Muda elimination? Let’s have a look:

  • Eliminated 10 at a time system

The staff member would wait for enough space to open up to allow 10 people inside the dining. The average wait time could be up to an hour and a half. Hence, Toyota eliminated this system and started allowing diners one by one as soon as a chair was free. The dinners were asked to form a line next to the food counter from where they could pick their dish. And the waiting time was reduced to 18 mins.

  • Reduced search time by half of the actual

Toyota engineers tried to accelerate the pickup process. They drew a layout identifying spots where they found slowdowns. They reorganized the shelves by using colored tape to mark the grain, vegetable, fruit and protein sections. The time volunteers spent in the pantry was reduced nearly by half.

  • Packaging time shrank to 11 seconds

At the warehouse, from where all the stock was being packed and supplied for victims of Hurricane Sandy, the average packaging time of one box was cut down to 11 seconds from 3 minutes. It was done by creating an assembly line. The volunteers had to drop food items into boxes as the boxes moved across a conveyor belt.

  • 1 meal per view

Toyota announced its “Meals Per Hour” campaign which was promoted through a short documentary film. The strategy included – the company to donate 1 meal for every view the video received, up to 250,000. In a very short time, the video went viral. The video even surpassed the original target goal. The company decided to donate an additional 1 million meals in addition to the 250,000 meals they had already donated. The video currently has more than 1,014,408 views.

Hence, as you can see, continual improvement is not static to improve productivity and profitability. It can help in such miraculous ways and places we won’t have even thought of. It is not necessary to donate in tangible terms only. The best gift any charitable trust would have received is what more they can give back to society by spending lesser time. Have you thought about it yet?


Written & Compiled by Faber Priyal & Faber Mayuri

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