Aerospace Manufacturing

Improve operational performance no matter what’s going on in the industry.
Aerospace manufacturing is unpredictably cyclical with unrelenting challenges. Today’s aerospace manufacturer must face complexity head-on: manage quality and tier suppliers, shorten manufacturing time, and deliver new products and innovation.

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Aerospace manufacturers and suppliers are eager to improve operational flexibility and boost competitive status.

It doesnt matter if you're making passenger aircraft or fighter jets, turbine engines or seat belt buckles, pulled rivets or overhead door latches — today’s aerospace manufacturer is dealing with tremendous pressure inside and outside the organization:

  • Highly cyclical and unpredictable sales, wide variation in number of products
  • Heavy competition and complex industry requirements
  • High demand for country-specific manufacturing
  • Steadily increasing manufacturing speeds and cost reductions
  • Parts and materials backlogs throughout the supply chain
  • Supplier quality, timing, and capabilities

Whether you’re trying to edge out the competition or striving for more innovation and faster product releases, we have proven experience, methods, and solutions to meet your goals.

Toward Zero helps you meet the demand for more innovation, faster product releases, and more flexibility to meet ever-increasing quality and performance demands. With us, you can make your business more competitive and profitable despite the complex pressures in aerospace manufacturing today:

  • Align culture, processes, and technology in the plant and throughout the manufacturing organization to achieve strategic goals
  • Equip the workforce with the right information to shorten manufacturing and design build times
  • Deliver faster, more accessible data and operational insight throughout the organization
  • Create more and better integrations between systems internally and across the supplier/OEM ecosystem
  • Establish processes for faster, seamless, and reliable knowledge transfer
  • Provide accurate information about parts, tools, and work instructions
  • Adapt and integrate manufacturing processes to handle new materials and technologies
  • Improve shop floor planning of manufacturing, tools, and capital equipment
  • Leverage modern technologies so your organization can attract, train, and manage a diverse workforce
  • Ensure processes and technology support effective transitioning of work across generations

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Every aerospace manufacturing company has a different take on industry pressures.  Toward Zero helps you improve flexibility and competitive advantage.

It takes up to millions of individual parts to make flight vehicles and out of necessity the aerospace industry is broad. Companies that make military aircraft, space systems, civil aircraft, and missiles have vastly different concerns from each other and even from the parts and components manufacturers that support them. Company size and target market also has an impact on challenges and opportunities in this diverse and complex industry.

Military Aircraft Manufacturing

Military aircraft manufacturers have to work hard to stand out among competition and satisfy customer demands.  Meeting deadlines is of course is top of mind for every aircraft manufacturer, but that's just the beginning.  International and country-specific regulatory requirements and certifications constantly shift and may cause confusion as political events play out.  Some OEMs are now considering shifting or adding manufacturing base locations from locations like the United States and Europe to Southeast Asia, which may add complexity around safety standards and the supply chain.  Then, as the economic climate shifts in the U.S. and globally, military aircraft manufacturers must always be prepared to respond to changes in orders and the cash flow fluctuations that may result.  Finally, safety is an ever-present concern the production environment, tools, and even the equipment being made exposes workers to tight spaces, with limited visibility, and even chemical substances.  Customer safety armed forces and the equipment they use can be an extremely costly (reputation and financially) and even deadly aspect that requires maximum diligence throughout even planning and manufacturing processes.

Space Systems Manufacturing

Space systems manufacturing is highly specialized, particularly since most of the components are low-volume.  Evolving federal regulations add to the complexity, along with operators' need to maintain flight certification. Innovative materials, testing, changing manufacturing processes, and environmental challenges keep this limited-production industry sector constantly on its toes.  Shifts in the political and economic landscape certainly factor into space systems manufacturing companies' concerns, but closer partnerships and transparency with customers for innovation in manufacturing and materials is perhaps this market sector's biggest opportunity.

Civil / Passenger Aircraft Manufacturing

Passenger safety is the top priority for every passenger aircraft manufacturer.  But that doesn't mean that innovation, speed of production and product release, and operational efficiencies aren't on airline manufacturing companies' mind.  Any economic crisis can spell order cancellations or order deferrals for aircraft makers and the entire supply chain.  Even still, late deliveries can create even more economic hardship for major brands, compounded by changes in orders for different equipment.  Finally even during downturns, most companies must maintain at least a token level of production capacity so they don't lose their skilled workforce or that of suppliers.

Missile Manufacturing

The global space vehicles and guided missiles manufacturing market is expected to grow to more than $515.55 billion by 2024.  That's great news for missile manufacturing companies, but doesn't mean that this sector is without its own challenges.  Competitive rivalries mean that manufacturers must partner effectively with customers, which includes transparency of manufacturing processes and production data.  These factors are both an opportunity and a challenge as companies that have been in the sector for many years may be hindered by aging technology infrastructures.

Aerospace Parts and Components Manufacturing

Tier 1 aerospace parts and components suppliers worry about the supply chain it's not always easy to get the right parts and raw materials at the right time, in the correct quantities, and at the right price to meet CSRs.  The ability to deliver safe, high-quality product isn't just a requirement missing the mark can have devastating consequences that can put the company out of business, and even put leadership personally on the line.  The risk is even greater for tier 2-n suppliers, since their entire business may rely on producing for this highly complex and sometimes volatile industry.  A company's ability to compete, put in place the right technologies and processes, and attract and retain a qualified workforce compound the challenges for manufacturing companies that make parts and components for the aerospace and defense industry.

Meet the Toward Zero Aerospace and Defense Manufacturing Experts

 

Steve Smith

Steve Smith

Senior Vice President

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Steve Smith

Steve Smith

Senior Vice President

» BIO AND CONTACT

As a business process optimization and change management executive, Steve Smith has excelled in both corporate leadership and consulting roles within multiple industries, including food and beverage, medical device, pharmaceutical and aerospace industries. Since 2016, Steve has served Toward Zero as Senior Vice President, driving significant and sustainable increases in operational efficiencies and productivity. Especially skilled at building buy-in and support for process improvement and change initiatives, Steve creates a team atmosphere that engages all stakeholders.

Pat Hatem

Pat Hatem

Vice President, Advisory Services

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Pat Hatem

Pat Hatem

Vice President, Advisory Services

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For over 30 years, Pat Hatem has been a change agent helping companies apply continuous improvement.  Throughout her career, she has inspired and motivated teams to align culture, processes, and technology, and achieve business results through operational excellence.  Her particular expertise spans business process, supply chain, strategy, MOM/MES, ERP, and quality, and she has deep manufacturing experience in consumer goods, chemical, and plastics.

Pat has held strategic and leadership roles in operations, supply chain, purchasing, strategy, process improvement, project management, process engineering, research and development, and environmental for prominent industrial organizations that span CarbonLite, Bemis Manufacturing, Diversey (formerly a division of SC Johnson), SC Johnson, The Dial Corporation, Abbott Laboratories, and Olin Corporation.  Pat is a Six Sigma Black Belt and a Lean Leader; she earned a BS Cum Laude in chemical engineering from Missouri University of Science & Technology.

Sean Lashmar

Sean Lashmar

Vice President, APS Solutions

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Sean Lashmar

Sean Lashmar

Vice President, APS Solutions

» BIO AND CONTACT

Sean Lashmar is a finance and supply chain executive with more than 25 years experience in helping companies reach higher levels of business performance. He has zeroed in on improvement opportunities by helping enterprises optimize business processes, achieve better supply chain performance, create and refine S&OP processes, and connect the dots between business objectives and execution at the operations level. He has spent the last 16 years partnering with manufacturing executives so their companies can capture the promise of operational excellence.

Can an OEE system help you overcome operational challenges?

  • žš’→ Improve quality
  • → Provide quick, easy performance metrics
  • → Support continuous improvement
  • Reduce planned and unplanned downtime
    Increase throughput
    Create starting point for uncovering reasons for performance loss
    Rally team members around performance objectives
    Establish common ground for best practice sharing
    Benchmark plant or enterprise performance

Request a OEE value assessment, and we’ll provide you with:

  • Detailed questionnaire specifically designed for your industry
    60-minute consultation with an operations improvement expert to understand your specific needs and environment
    Custom report with value estimates by category, and recommendations for order of priorities
    30-minute consultation with your operations improvement partner to discuss report findings and answer your questions
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