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Increased OEE achieved through solid focus and further training All day, every day, Elopak converts hundreds of tons of cardboard into cartons. Elopak’s cartons for liquids such as milk, yoghurt and cocoa are sold all over the world. OPTIMISATION PROCESS The last five years have witnessed Elopak’s expansion and investment in new technology and the latest machinery. At the Lystrup production site, the number of employees has doubled, new processes and products have emerged, and the volume of production has increased. The challenges have been wastage, unplanned production stoppages in the older fleet of machines, and lack of knowledge transfer between the different teams. In their efforts to deal with these challenges and save on expensive resources, Elopak decided to create a new working culture amongst its staff. The idea was to introduce a common company language and culture that could ensure continual improvements via optimisation of human processes.


ELOVATION – A COMPANY VOYAGE In cooperation with 4IMPROVE, Elopak undertook a thorough assessment where no stone was left unturned in the effort to optimise machine utilisation, minimise wastage and increase productivity. This became the focal point of Elopak’s optimisation programme. The goal was to increase both OEE and shared responsibility; changes and projects should be run by the employees. It was important that all employees were involved, and this meant training in processes and maintenance of the fleet of machines (TPM). To ensure focus and depth in the implementation of the various projects, Elopak works with a “project engine” that introduces focused activities that are executed over a 12-week period, yielding a steady output of results.

A 50% increase in staff over the last 2-4 years. Increased volume, new products and processes. Wastage, unplanned production stoppages in the older section of the machine fleet, and a lack of knowledge transfer between the different teams.

THE SOLUTION: Assessment, optimisation process, skills upgrade for all staff, training in Total Productive Maintenance (TPM), staff-driven cultural change, shared language, and not least of all, a series of focused projects lasting 12 weeks each.


OEE increased in critical processes, significant reduction in cardboard wastage, efficient knowledge-sharing across teams, effective processes, visible cultural change, and positive bottom line results.

The ambition has been to develop the company on all levels, which is why ELOVATION also contains a shared training upgrade for all Elopak employees. The training consists of two levels: TPM Basic: A 3-day foundation course for all employees, which is compulsory regardless of one’s position in the company. TPM Driver: A longer course lasting 12 weeks, which involves 30 employees who have been specifically selected. The company hands each employee an individual training plan and a concrete optimisation project. The optimisation project is the exam assignment, so the theory is connected to practise from day one. THE RESULTS: INCREASED OEE, SHARED COMPANY LANGUAGE AND LESS WASTAGE Staff engagement has been successful. Elopak’s employees have acquired a standardised language

that allows for effective knowledge-sharing across teams. They have also gained a shared understanding of optimisation, and a common platform. These changes are visible in the form of more effective processes and a substantial decrease in cardboard wastage, which provides a positive bottom line result. Operator-controlled maintenance has been introduced, and this decreases the workload of the maintenance department, and provides the operators with a far greater insight into the machines they work with. The result is far fewer unplanned stoppages, and therefore less time wastage. In addition to these measures, Elopak has introduced staff orientation meetings in various parts of the company, so everyone can follow developments. These collective meetings include and engage all employees in the improvement processes for the benefit of themselves, and management.

4IMPROVE provided us with both structure and method, and these are well-implemented and actively used at Elopak”. Kurt Hansen, Lean Manager and Project Manager.

It has been great to be part of changing the company culture and having responsibility for a project that contributes to such significant savings”. Joakim La Cour, Graphic Print and Track Leader.

THE FUNDAMENTAL IDEA: Elopak has undertaken a cultural change that is clear to all employees. Employees have received training in both processes and methods, so are well on their way to continuing their cultural transformation themselves.

Photographer: Inge Lynggaard Hansen

4IMPROVE Case | Elopak UK  
4IMPROVE Case | Elopak UK