April 2014

Manufacturing Strategies

Rilco has expanded its product portfolio and capabilities over the decades by increasing floor space, adding equipment, and remaining committed to meeting all of our customers’ needs. Rilco has implemented two types of manufacturing strategies, the “job shop” and the “flow shop”. With the addition of another 100,000 square feet of manufacturing space Rilco is further expanding our “Lean Manufacturing” and "Six Sigma" management strategies.

From "Job Shop" to "Flow Shop"

The first method of manufacturing that was initiated at Rilco was the “Job Shop” strategy. This process is characterized by the production of a variety of small to medium volume products and services which are labor intensive, process oriented, and offer intermittent workflow. The job shop strategy allows for a vast amount of customization for each project or client. This is a major reason why Rilco is capable of producing almost all types of pipe supports. This method has proven to be crucial in Rilco’s ability to compete on quality, speed of product delivery, customization, as well as new product introductions. As the volume of demand increased over the years Rilco added extra manufacturing capabilities that have been structured as a “flow shop”. It is typical for most manufacturing firms to begin as a “job shop” and develop into other strategies of manufacturing such as the “Flow Shop”.

The “Flow Shop” is configured to produce a high volume of products which are defined by streamlined workflow, dedicated equipment, and product oriented labor for specific projects. As demand grew for Rilco products over the years we developed a hybrid strategy that included both the Job Shop process which allows for customization and the Flow Shop process that utilizes fast, customized production machinery which aid in mass production.

Further Incorporation of a Lean Manufacturing Strategy

Lean Manufacturing was first derived in the Toyota Production System. This system was renowned for its focus on the reduction of waste throughout the production process which ultimately led to an improvement in overall customer value.

lean manufacturing

As capacity has been stretched with high volumes of standardized products along with our highly customized product lines moving through our shops, management has studied the current state and the potential options for evolving our manufacturing processes to best suite our company growth. So, with our facilities expanding another 100K square feet in the next year we have begun to implement a lean manufacturing system that will further streamline our production facilities.

Rilco, as a whole, is dedicated to the successful implementation of the lean system. All of our department managers have been trained and certified in both Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma Management. We are all excited for the improvements to come as we aim to reduce and eliminate any of our wasteful practices and strive to reach 100% on-time deliveries for every project without sacrificing the quality of our products.