IIE Los Angeles

IIE L.A.: Improving Life for the Developmentally Disabled

Members from Ventura, Claremont, Long Beach converge on AbilityFirst Los Angeles Work Center

IIE members met recently at the Los Angeles Work Center for AbilityFirst to begin a project to improve the efficiency of the Business Services Division.  This Division is where adults with physical and developmental disabilities are gainfully employed to solve corporate needs.  The income supplied by this Division helps support other programs and services, for adults and children, with physical and developmental disabilities, the core purpose of AbilityFirst.  This income is important as government support steadily dwindles.

Ms. Isis McDonald, the Director of the Business Services Division, stated that her Division is “in the black”.  She stressed the importance that with shrinking government funding for programs and services, internal funding sources be developed. Strategically, as a profit center, it is critical that growth be done in an “intelligent” manner.  The Secure Shredding Service has been identified as a growth service.  Because of “chain of custody” issues, growth must be closely tied to process control. A seeming perfect fit for the skills of industrial engineers.

The project calls on IIE as a partner to have members apply their professional skills to improve operational effectiveness within the Business Services Division.  Our first task is to help define “capacity” for their nascent Secure Shredding Service.  After an orientation by Ms. McDonald and a tour by Work Center Director, Fennie Washington, the 12 engineers went to the Gemba to fully understand the task at hand.  In 2-3 weeks, a VSM will be developed and available for the team to analyze.  Members of the team are assigned to take
video of the loading and unloading of the shredder.  Also, video of the unloading of the bins from the truck will also be completed for later analysis.  Finally, a strategy for pick up will be developed from members who have experience in developing these algorithms.

Using DMAIC methodology, we hope to demonstrate the value in using this problem-solving format.  We feel we have “D” identified (capacity), “M” will include the development of the VSM.  With an accurate picture of the operation, a current state capacity model may be built and presented.  From this, an “A” analysis of possible improvements can be forecast and recommendations for “I” improvement can be derived.

To view a recent report of Ability First’s activities, follow this link.

Stay tuned for further updates.

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