Catherine Plumail: Driving Manufacturing Collaboration at Ingersoll Rand
The LeanDNA-List celebrates the hard work of our customers, who work day-in and day-out to optimize inventory, reduce shortages, and encourage manufacturing collaboration. These winners represent the tenacious, knowledgeable, and hands-on users and champions of LeanDNA.
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“Catherine is dynamic and supportive. She has a strong knowledge of the operations, people, and business objectives. She’s become such an expert in LeanDNA that she now helps drive new enhancements with our teams. With her guidance and leadership, the sites now have more standard processes and dashboards to drive their operations forward for buyers and management teams.”
– Astrid Hussonnois | Customer Success Senior Manager, LeanDNA
As part of her role as Supply Chain Optimization Leader at Precision and Science Technologies, an Ingersoll Rand business unit, and a member of Paul Aram’s Central Operations team, Catherine Plumail is a focal point. Her everyday includes leading integration of new acquisitions, driving supply chain initiatives, developing and improving supply chain processes and KPIs, and implementing projects across all sites. Catherine’s biggest achievement in her current role so far? Total alignment.
Different Sites, Different Challenges
Establishing alignment across multiple sites is easier said than done. No location has the same specialty, the same set of rules and processes, or the same challenges. When Catherine began working with these sites, there wasn’t an alignment of KPIs or much collaboration between the teams at each location, with them being widespread and independently operating. However, there were a few pain points that the majority of her sites were experiencing— a lack of visibility into real time inventory data, difficulty staying on top of shortages, and an absence of standardized work processes and metrics.
To address these pain points and boost efficiency and productivity of the sites, Catherine’s approach was positive and supportive. With an established career in supply chain management, and as a former Materials Planner, she understood more than most the unique challenges both the buyers and the management teams were facing, and that the key to optimized inventory management and improved KPIs starts with enabling the people in the factory with the right data and tools. For Catherine and her team, LeanDNA was a helpful ally in meeting their goals.
LeanDNA’s Role in the Alignment
Ingersoll Rand has had previous success using LeanDNA, and when Catherine was introduced to it she quickly recognized the potential value for her sites. While coordinating the implementation, Catherine and her team linked current “weaknesses” to LeanDNA’s capabilities.
Catherine knew that to drive a successful expansion a “one size fits all” approach wouldn’t cut it. Instead, she worked with her central team to pinpoint the current constraints for each site and how LeanDNA could best serve each team’s needs.
Despite the differences in rollouts, LeanDNA was able to bring the same gains and advantages to each team:
- Total Visibility: Before, data was hidden in multiple ERP systems that weren’t user friendly. With LeanDNA’s widgets and reporting features, accurate and up-to-date information became easily accessible and shareable. Each Material Management team can view the status of common parts, the shortages that could be solved by another site, and the excess inventory that can be sold. Now, instead of working in silos, everyone is using and acting from a single point of truth, from the buyers to the executive team.
- Ability to Attack Shortages: Instead of feeling overwhelmed and unsure of how to address shortages, teams now have the ability to pinpoint the root cause of current problems and are given daily prioritized actions to take.
- Standardized work: Every member on the team is given workflows and best practices for daily, weekly, and monthly actions, customized to hit set KPIs. Now there’s no question on which action item to address first or which one is the most important. Every task and action item they are given are the most financially impactful for the company at large.
After successfully implementing LeanDNA at multiple sites, Catherine was able to bring her teams together and achieve that alignment she was working towards. This alignment fostered a sense of unity and collaboration that is now a valuable part of their work.
Collaboration to Boost Productivity and Growth
One of the first things Catherine did when starting her role at Ingersoll Rand was setting up regular supply chain meetings with various Supply Chain managers, Procurement managers, and site leaders to discuss industry news and topics. These talks range from weekly LeanDNA routine calls and monthly Inventory Talks to Quarterly Supply Chain review. This kind of communication and collaboration that she began as soon as she joined the team at large was only strengthened as LeanDNA was rolled out and she achieved that goal of alignment. The result has been powerful team building and a co-ownership of successful results.
Collaboration has always been making their regular meetings easier. Instead of making powerpoint presentations for each meeting, a manual and time-consuming process that ate up leaders’ time, conversations are now guided by LeanDNA’s shareable dashboards, reports, and data. Depending on the conversation, the teams start by viewing the standard dashboard and then jump into the current problems and possible solutions. This is helpful for not only the buyers and planners, Catherine says, but site leads and those in roles like herself, as well. Meetings are more productive and teams have the ability to learn from each other.
For Catherine, this is a great asset because it helps the teams and sites work and grow together, rather than working independently in silos. Not only that, but it has fueled some healthy competition, too!
Guiding LeanDNA Improvements
Catherine isn’t just a user of LeanDNA, she’s an active contributor in our customer portal, Kaizen Corner. By consistently giving feedback and suggesting improvements, she is part of an important community that contributes to deep industry knowledge with the role expertise to help us improve our service offerings.
By encouraging those she works with to get active in our online community and share their opinions, too, LeanDNA is able to better serve manufacturers worldwide.
“With her guidance and leadership, the sites now have more standard processes and dashboards to drive their operations for buyers and for the management teams. Now there is a clear understanding of Ingersoll Rand’s next milestones because of how she built the success criteria with the board and site leaders.”
– Astrid Hussonnois | Customer Success Senior Manager, LeanDNA
With her sights set on further improvements and company-wide milestones, Catherine continues to support her sites in reaching their goals and become more productive and efficient in the process.
Ready for total alignment? See how LeanDNA can help you attack shortages, reduce excess inventory, gain total visibility, and more. Set up a time with a LeanDNA expert today.