To be a contender for Redzone Plant of the Year (PoY) award, we need to see outstanding productivity, product quality and safety, as well as phenomenal teamwork across departments. These are characteristics of all 117 nominees for the 8 categories of the Redzone Community Awards. For the top prize, we also want to hear and see a clear sense of corporate identity, a collective mission throughout the organization and a cultural transformation that results in a unified team from the shop floor to the top floor.
To take the crown of PoY and be named the best of the best across our community is a combination of the quantitative and the qualitative – from shop floor productivity and OEE increases, reduction in waste, improvements in changeovers, to career changing culture that’s moving the dial in business operations. The PoY winner and finalists have all made Redzone part of their DNA as an organization. They are great places to work whether on the line or in the break room with co-workers.
We are thrilled to announce that the Redzone 2021 ‘Plant of the Year’ award goes to Honeyville. This year we decided to award the plant of the year to both the Ogden and Rancho Cucamonga plants. Although they are 700 miles apart, Redzone has brought them together to produce incredible results. “Five years ago, we were just a plot of land. We have moved mountains to get to where we are today,” said Ryan Sutch, Redzone and Software Administrator at Honeyville. Both plants have taken their performance from a baseline of 30% OEE to a 80% OEE on any given day. “It’s all in thanks to the dedication and devotion of our great team members working on our Production team,” Sutch adds.
The motto of lean manufacturing plus safe, efficient production is the name of the game for them. Ogden and Rancho Cucamonga have worked together since their 2018 implementations and through all the Redzone modules to secure some massive improvements on all fronts. UPH performance at Ogden is up 230% to 3351 units and Rancho Cucamonga is up 108% to 1180. Ogden proudly has a 71% downtime reduction, with the Rancho facility touting a 50% reduction in downtime.
Whether in Utah or California, it’s the family culture that can be credited as the secret sauce of retaining employees and exceeding goals. In a year with headlines surrounding the labor shortage crisis, Honeyville’s culture is known around town, helping them attract new staff without the lure of hiring bonuses. Recently when the company celebrated their 70th birthday, they were proud to show their immediate family where they worked, what products they made, and how they personally contributed to the success of Honeyville – their home away from home. The display of teamwork and company character shines during all celebrations and can be heard any day of the week.
At both Ogden and Rancho Cucamonga, the energy, spirit and drive to succeed is contagious. “An employee goes home after a 12-hour shift with excitement about what they have been able to accomplish and knowing they have made a difference because they see and understand the scoreboard. That is amazingly rewarding as a leader,” said Nathan Hyde, Chief Operating Officer at Honeyville. “It’s easy to see through the data the tremendous improvements to downtime, changeovers, and OEE Honeyville has accomplished, but what’s way more important than the numbers is the positive effect these improvements have had on our frontline people,” he beamed with pride. Their open- door office policy when speaking to management trickles up and down to frontline workers who feel rewarded, empowered to learn new skills, have a career to be proud of, and share in the company’s financial gains.
“Redzone has helped us all come together as one unit! It’s changed our culture by creating a better understanding between Quality, Maintenance, Production and Warehouse,” said Production/Sanitation Supervisor, Dave Ruiz. Maintenance Technician, Eric Dunham, enjoys Redzone not only for its day-to-day functions, but also to get to know new employees during his ‘Doctor’s Rounds’. At both facilities, Maintenance team members smile when speaking about the change from static mic communication and writing everything down to preventative maintenance, pictures, and videos. The maintenance teams at both facilities could teach us all a lesson or two on chats, tagging and responding quickly in the app with “I got this!” or an “I can grab that!”
Honeyville uses Redzone as their tool to see the strengths of team members and further cross-train. If a tech is better at electrical tasks, then they will be put on more of those jobs to further drive the success of the plant. This ability, to let people shine in their best skill sets, has transformed the Rancho plant from operating on 3 shifts 6 days per week, to now producing more volume in 2 shifts over 5 days. As the team said, they are working smarter, and the culture of accountability is on the shoulders of everyone.
Redzone has helped us all come together as one unit! It’s changed our culture by creating a better understanding between Quality, Maintenance, Production and Warehouse.
Paper Free Party
The Ogden team attributed the Compliance module as the real trigger for the gains. Before Redzone, both facilities dealt with many holds on the production line, one costing $20,000. As the leadership team said, “that amount for Honeyville was a huge deal.” Holds at both plants dropped from a high of 30 in the prior year to zero, and SPC gave the teams instant feedback on weights, allowing operators to monitor their MAV during the run, leading to a $350k annual saving on one SKU alone at Ogden. The story of going paperless is a victorious and picturesque one for Honeyville! They previously had so much paper, the company paid for an off-site warehouse to store it all. When it came time for any inspections, forklift machines were needed to bring pallets of paper back to the plant, to then sort through in a room – full of boxes! Paper was everywhere! With Compliance, Operations took ownership for QA and the teams came together, spearheaded by Kari Pierson, Shari Hernandez, and Elvira Piña, who built checks that exceeded everyone’s expectations. The QA team went from “data takers to monitoring and improvement,” said Sherry. With a smaller team in place, ‘wins’ for Honeyville include a mock recall of 100% and finding the information needed to tag something in 30 seconds. To say the QA team celebrated going completely digital in 28 days by throwing paper up in the air is no joke! Nathan again said he is so proud of what the improvement numbers represent, which is collaboration, empowerment, teamwork, and being people minded before profit minded.
Leading From The Floor
At Ogden, it’s Tyler Worthy. At Rancho, it’s Byron Arias. These plant managers ears must ring all day long from what their people say about them. “We have some of the greatest leadership on the planet,” said Nathan of his leaders. Tyler Worthy started soon after the plant opened as a night shift production supervisor, then becoming an Operations Manager to his role today. If there is a machine that isn’t running correctly, Tyler is right there building boxes, filling pouches, and working alongside shop floor workers so everyone can ‘Win the Day’ and see green on the TVs. “Tyler is amazing at perceiving someone is hurting and is often the first one to put his arm around and listen to what is happening in their lives,” Nathan adds. “Both Tyler and Byron’s servant leadership have guided their plants through the successes and improvements they have seen throughout our Redzone journey. Tyler is constantly looking for ways to improve the frontline team members’ work life balance and continually leads the company in ‘High 5s and Chats,” Nathan adds. Customer Service Manager, Zina Bakoo, says Byron makes people want to come to work every day. He is known for always having a “we got this!” motto and bounce in his step. “Leaders are out on the floor helping and understand the pains,” Nathan said of his two plant managers who he added, “are part of the fabric that make up the Honeyville culture.”
You can’t talk about Honeyville without the ‘S word’ – safety! Every huddle, every day at Honeyville begins with the topic of safety. Before Redzone there were maybe 20 safety suggestions annually. Now 15-20 suggestions are being submitted monthly to the safety committee because employees know their voices are being heard and actions are being taken. At Honeyville, it’s a company wide effort – amounting to an improved safety score from 3.9 to 0.67! Honeyville has proven that safety ‘Wins the Day.’
Why The Win?
Overall productivity and business results, team and skill development plus exemplary employee experience all shine at Honeyville Ogden and Rancho Cucamonga plants. If our workplace is where we spend the most time in the day, then getting this right in an authentic way is critical. Doing it right drives a true culture change, ensures employees feel valued and show up to work with a good attitude. Honeyville employees know and feel that they are empowered – whether on the line, within their teams and in speaking with their leadership. For many companies it takes years to see a culture change, but for Honeyville’s two plants this vivacious and welcoming culture happened in a short period of time. From the shop floor to the management, they work with one goal and one objective – all with trust and connectivity driving their wins.
Honeyville has embraced the key strategies that make Redzone and the rest of the growing community of manufacturers successful:
- Shop Floor-First Approach: Empowering frontline workers to realize their full impact in the organization and personal growth in gaining new skill sets
- Collaboration and Communication: Giving everyone a voice no matter their position in the organization, utilizing the technology to ensure everyone is dialed into the same goals
- Continuous Improvement Mindset: A culture where no one sits on the sidelines waiting to be told the next project or change; the team is organically thinking of ways to improve the shop floor.