Lean Manufacturing with P&A Industrial Fabrications

By Anirudh Shenoy

P&A Industrial Fabrications in Roxboro is a manufacturer producing premium woven fabrics. They primarily make paint roller fabrics for companies such as Sherwin Williams, and fabrics for automobile manufacturers like BMW and Mercedes-Benz. P&A has about 45 employees and all of its products are made in the USA. P&A’s central philosophies are rooted in Lean Manufacturing principles and every employee participates in multiple 5S, Lean, and Kaizen events annually.

NCGrowth assisted P&A Industrial Fabrications in their transition to a lean manufacturing environment. One of the primary issues in this transition has been production planning. NCGrowth created several automation scripts, which run alongside existing production planning software, to reduce manual input. These automation scripts free up the engineer’s time to focus on more pressing issues at the manufacturing plant.

P&A Lean Manufacturing

Changing the workflow in a manufacturing environment is a huge hindrance in the transition to lean production. These changes, if implemented incorrectly, can be counterproductive and reduce production volume and in turn, revenue. NCGrowth created a program that uses data from the manufacturing plant to simulate the effect of these changes. The program enables the management to test out various “What-if” scenarios to optimize labor costs and increase production volumes. By using the program P&A Industrial fabrications can test and implement changes faster, while making a smooth transition to lean production.

Anirudh Shenoy is an NCGrowth analyst and master’s candidate in Industrial Engineering at NC State University.