Case Study- KV Engineering Uses Lean Principles to Capture Boeing as a Customer

One of the key elements on my American Lean Weekday podcast is the weekly interviews that I conduct with companies using Lean principles to improve.  These companies are from various industries and are all different sizes.  I have interviewed leaders from family-owned businesses to multi-national organizations.  This podcast can be found here.  It is episode seventeen on the American Lean Weekday podcast

KV Engineering is a family-owned machine shop located in Santa Ana, California and primarily supports the Aerospace and Defense industry.  Established in 1984 starting with one manual mill in a garage, they have grown into a 22,000 square foot facility with 60 employees and thirty machines.

They have machining, sheet metal, and assembly under one roof.  They have been working to improve using Lean principles for about a year and a half.

These are some key points taken from my interview with the President of KV Engineering, Christie Vu.

  1. “I had been to other shops that were very clean and organized and I wanted my shop to look like that. We began with 6S and after that, Boeing came in and said what a great looking shop we hadThat would not have happened two years ago.”
  2. “It’s going to take a while- you can’t change overnight. You have to keep at it, your company won’t magically change.
  3. Some of the biggest successes have been “6S, reducing set-up times, implementing cells and putting a core team in place to drive culture change.”
  4. “Everyone cares more. They like that they can do things faster.  They are engaged and it’s exciting!”
  5. “Take it slow. The longer you have had your business the longer it will take.”
  6. If we can do it, anyone can do it!” 

As always, it is an honor to serve you and I hope that you and your company are getting better every day!

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