Article summary: PETA BTEC learners have saved their employers £100,000s and hours of time with their projects, which they presented at our BTEC Project Day last week.
Last week our Engineering BTEC learners presented their final projects to their peers and employers at our latest project day.
The students had to first identify a problem within their business that their project would fix. After coming up with 3 possible solutions, they carried out a SWOT analysis to pick the best solution, taking into consideration the time and cost that each solution would take.
Read more about each project below:
Problem: A disorganised warehouse meant that workers were sometimes spending hours searching for the correct water pump to fix.
Solution: Oliver created software to be installed on company tablets, which clearly organises the entire warehouse into categories and identifies each pump with an individual code, so that they can easily be logged and located by workers. Oliver calculated that by using the software, the company would save £1,097.04 per month in labour time.
Company: Phoenix Systems UK
Problem: Joe identified that the production speed of one of their products, the logger device, was longer than necessary due to a number of reasons including outdated working instructions.
Solution: Joe decided to overhaul the entire process and created a new production flow line to bring departments closer together, save time and save space. He created and sourced new tools to increase speed and efficiency and updated the working instruction accordingly. The time taken to build the logger following the new process was 951 minutes (15.85 hours), compared to 2867 minutes (47.78 hours) with the previous process, saving a huge 32 hours each task.
Company: Knowlton & Newman
Problem: Difficulty transporting rotors between workshops (some of which can weigh over 2 tonnes) as the door frame isn’t wide enough, so a longer route is taken each time. Risk of damage to rotors and workers without a standardised, safe method of transportation.
Solution: Cameron created an adjustable trolley to make transporting rotors safer, as well as saving time compared to the previous, longer route. In addition to saving costs in labour time, use of the trolley will avoid product damage of £20k-£50k per year.
Problem: The drying process of aerosol samples was identified as potentially unreliable. The bacterial challenge test was not controlled or standardised, which creates risks of contamination of samples. If the sample needed to be sent back for re-drying, 2 weeks out of the 4-week turnaround deadline are wasted, reducing the quality of the customer experience.
Solution: Luis created clear working instructions and introduced equipment to standardise and streamline the drying process, whilst also minimising health and safety risks. The estimated value of the profit improvement thanks to the production standardisation is £300k per year.
Problem: The quality of work and time management of the welders is not up to a high standard, leading to contracted work being lost.
Solution: Oliver decided that investing in a laser welder would be the most cost-effective way to improve the standard of welding as well as decrease the time taken for each welding task. Dispensers will go from 9 days of production of welding down to 3, and the production of aluminium corners will decrease from 30 mins per product part down to 5 minutes. The net revenue of money saved and new work gained will be £100,647.
Problem: Customers who bought products from Alitex were facing challenges in finding storage solutions to fit the bespoke greenhouses
Solution: Lewis created a bespoke bench drawer for the greenhouses for customers to store their tools and equipment. By adding an additional product to the catalogue, the bench drawer will generate more profit.
Problem: The company was accumulating a large amount of scrap metal due to the poor accuracy of the current metal cutting tool. The scrap metal was losing the company money as well as having a negative impact on the environment.
Solution: Thomas introduced a tube cutting guide to increase the precision of cutting and reduce the amount of waste product generated. By using the guide, the company saves £43,818.60 and 1km of metal each year.
See more from the Project Day in our video here.