Our client is the largest natural stone producer in Austria. The company operates seven granite quarries which mostly supply the Austrian B2B sector.
For a number of years, the company operated at a loss. This was due, largely, to outdated production facilities with high downtime and maintenance costs, inadequate performance controls and a lack of quality management. Production planning was also very rudimentary.
Escalating quality problems and delays to deliveries led to a loss of customers and the inevitable impact on the company’s financial position.
Reorganisation and Restructuring
- With the business under threat of closure, Syngroup provided an senior interim-manager who was able to guide our client through the insolvency process and also supported our client during discussions with banks and finance houses. With financing and debt rescheduling resolved, the banks imposed a range of restructuring measures which were incorporated into the recovery plan.
- We focused initially on an organisation re-design with the objective of moving our client to a ‘process-organisation’. The benefits that came from this included increased responsiveness and better collaboration across functions. Tangible benefits included a reduction in order throughput time of between 20-40 %.
- With a history of quality issues, a Quality Acceptance and Control process was implemented. Improvements to quality appeared relatively quickly and the outcome of the implementation was an 80% reduction in quality-related complaints.
- The sales process was tightened up significantly with the introduction of targets and regular review of the sales pipeline.
- In production, lead times and set-up times were optimised and and maintenance cycles were planned in order to increase capacity utilisation and efficiency.
- Detailed make or buy decisions led to the partial outsourcing of individual production steps.
- The product portfolio was reduced on the basis of profitability and the loss-making part of the business was closed-down.
- Controls were put in place alongside a performance management process to provide focus and ensure that improvements would continue to be made.