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QRM and POLCA: A Winning Combination for Manufacturing Enterprises in the 21st Century

QRM and POLCA: A Winning Combination for Manufacturing Enterprises in the 21st Century

This article gives an overview of the QRM strategy, which focuses on lead time reduction throughout the enterprise. The authors also explain why lean manufacturing strategies of flow, takt time and pull don't work well for these markets where customized products are in high demand, and why QRM has greater competitive potential. Next the authors describe POLCA, a material-control system to be used as part of QRM. Again, we show why a kanban system (used in lean manufacturing for material control) is not appropriate for such markets. POLCA provides an effective method to support both manufacturing and material control for companies producing custom products. The combination of QRM and POLCA will provide companies with significant competitive advantage through their ability to quickly deliver customized products. Take a quiz to determine your management strategy.Today's CAD/CAM technology gives us the ability to customize products without incurring high additional costs. Customer demands for personalized products, combined with Internet-based individualized ordering capabilities, means increasing demand for customized products.Then after placing their orders, both OEMs (original...

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