World-class manufacturing in today’s competitive environment demands more than a single-minded focus on eliminating defects. Since we introduced Six Sigma and Lean tools to our operations more than a decade ago, they have delivered significant results for customers in terms of the quality, delivery and value of our products and services. However, in recent years we have seen other companies successfully implement these methodologies. What was once a key differentiator for Honeywell is now used widely throughout industry. To achieve competitive advantage in today’s environment, we need to build on our Six Sigma and Lean foundation, and identify new ways to differentiate ourselves.
Benchmark companies such as Toyota and Nissan use Six Sigma and Lean tools, but they also have a disciplined management system that standardizes work and involves employees in improving work processes. By doing this, they have achieved tremendous performance improvements. Honeywell’s 10-year history with Six Sigma and Lean, plus our learning-oriented culture, can allow us to achieve similar results.
The Honeywell Operating System is a comprehensive, integrated approach to managing our organization. It will be characterized by a consistent focus on results for the benefit of our customers, not on the use of specific tools. The objectives will be to simplify and standardize processes everywhere, to remove variation across our operations, and to drive significant – and sustainable – improvements in safety, quality, delivery and cost. Employees will be encouraged to keep using tools such as Six Sigma, Lean, change management and program management, but the most important elements of the system will be leadership alignment and employee involvement in achieving a common purpose: a company-wide operating system that consistently yields great results for our customers.
Implementing the Honeywell Operating System is a journey, and it will take time. Early pilot sites will try different techniques, learn from them, and share their learnings with other sites as they implement the system. The Honeywell Operating System will be defined by identifying and converging on the best practices from the pilots along with continued external benchmarking. The system will evolve to fit different business environments and changing customer needs. At the same time, it will become an essential part of the “glue” that binds our company across business and geographic boundaries.
Over time, we anticipate that the Honeywell Operating System will result in simpler, more efficient processes. This will lead to more competitive offerings for our customers, improved safety performance, and sustainable, profitable growth.