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Continuous Improvement Manager

Harrison charter Township, Michigan, 48045, United States
January 24, 2018

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James C. Brown

Harrison Township, MI, *****, Cell: 586-***-****,


LSSBB Continuous Improvement Kaizen Events Large scale Lean Deployment Root Cause Analysis Team Mentoring / Development 5S Implementation SMED TPM Business Management Program Management Process Design & Deployment Database Design, Development & Execution Scrap Reduction & Control


A true hands-on, expert in managing multiple Continuous Improvement projects simultaneously, while implementing culture changing lean methodologies to improve operations, increase profitability, sustain results, and drive Operational Excellence.


12/2015-Present Continuous Improvement Manager Chassix, Warren, MI

Chassix, a Global company specializing in Casting, Machining, and Assembly of safety related vehicle suspension parts.

Worked with corporate Lean manager on creating Lean Manufacturing training material and trained both plants including all managers, supervisors, leaders, engineers, and operators

Designed communication boards, work stations, and improved plant layout with Draft Sight/AutoCAD

Consolidated 2 plants into 1 by laying out most efficient floor plan using Lean tools to see most efficient layout

Created Process maps to show current and future state maps for improvement needs

Identified most efficient work cell layout during Kaizen events during workflow actions via Spaghetti Diagrams

Managed work cell re-design projects from idea to installation and prove-out

Managed machine move process from plant-to-plant to improve efficiency of material movement

Deployed Lean Manufacturing at the Warren Campus with weekly Kaizen workshops to train and execute Lean tools on shop floor product lines and develop shop floor Lean culture

Developed Communication board to make Plant activities more visible to improve communication by all departments

Trained employees of Lean and CI tools during all-hands stand-up meetings that were held monthly at each plant

Managed multiple Continuous Improvement projects using Six Sigma and Lean Manufacturing Methodologies

Created quality check tool shadow board and work instructions and launched campus wide to meet 5S standards

Developed a quality tool shadow board with reference work instructions built into design for added quality control

Created a TPM database that provided and tracked all checklists for operators, leaders, maintenance, and tooling

Created and trained new procedures that improved process control that complies with ISO/TS 16949 Standards

Lead internal auditor (TS16949) who modified and managed an internal auditing system for internal audits

Lead internal auditor who is IAFT 16949:2016 certified and modified existing procedures to comply with changes

Certified storm water operator who performed and managed routine and monthly audits in 2 plants

Led several Root Cause Analysis meetings and Kaizen events to resolve and prevent issue re-occurrence

Developed Predictive Maintenance procedures using several methods that comply with TS 16949 & IATF standards

Developed an Autonomous Maintenance procedure to distribute tasks daily to leaders and operators

Key Accomplishments

Created an OEE database to track OEE, Scrap, Downtime Issues, FTC%, Uptime%, generate automatic shift reports daily, and monitor Labor Efficiency tracking capabilities that improved campus OEE by 20%

Created and Led scrap teams at both Stephens and Blackstone plants and reduced scrap by 55% within 6 months

Supported management team in obtaining Q1 status in both plants at the Warren Campus within 12 months

Developed a Lean culture change through 5S, TPM, Visual Management, daily meetings, and Kaizen workshops

10/2014-12/2015 Business Management Continuous Improvement Leader Iroquois Industries, Warren, MI

Iroquois Industries is a fully integrated enterprise that specializes in Metal Forming, Welding, and Assembly.

Managed multiple Continuous Improvement projects at plant and corporate levels

Developed Preventive / Predictive Maintenance processes for stamping, tooling, welding, and assembly machines

Performed project execution as a Change Agent to improve Business Management processes throughout 6 plants

Developed training material to train directors, managers, supervisors and inspectors of Root Cause Analysis

Created, developed, and managed a BMS Project management process that tracked, monitored, and controlled each project from idea to deployment

Created and executed a Control Plan audit process that followed critical parts from PPAP through the final inspection process in Stamping, Welding, and Assembly plants

Managed multiple Continuous Improvement Business Management projects that re-designed processes into a more robust system at a corporate level and streamlined through 6 facilities

Developed BMS procedures including control plan improvement, document and data control, resource management, quality systems, corrective and preventive actions, receiving inspection, control of non-conformance products, purchasing, preventative and predictive maintenance, management of tooling systems, and training

Key Accomplishments

Led the Business Management System overhaul on all processes, procedures, and standards to comply 100% with ISO 14001 & TS 16949 standards

Led a corporate wide Quality Assurance project that revised/rewrote all: control plans, operation work instructions, weld: (analysis, callout, and identification sheets), check fixture work instructions, confirm blue-print dimensions and tolerance accuracy, and Packaging plan revision via Microsoft Access database management

10/2013-10/2014 APU Lean Manager Constellium, Novi, MI

Constellium, a global Automotive Structures sector committed to designing and manufacturing aluminum products

Improved plant operations of plant EHS, quality, maintenance, logistics, materials, production, and Lean Manufacturing processes

Trained and developed team leaders-to-production supervisors on Lean Manufacturing tools and concepts

Developed and managed a manufacturing machine performance monitoring system by tracking machine OEE at every machine in both the East and West Novi plants

Overseen, supported, and led the plant by providing leadership and employee development in Lean Manufacturing, Continuous Improvement, and Root Cause Analysis

Led Kaizen events that focused on machine cycle time reduction, machine performance, quality control, material management, logistics, and plant layout re-design via AutoCAD

Trained supervisors on SAP production reporting tasks for all shifts at both plants for material management tasks

Mentored daily activities for all shifts on manual data collection, control chart tracking and development, 5S activities, TPM activities, and quality control processes

Traveled to different plants for Lean project training in the corporate Lean community in global locations

Designed, installed, and implemented material flow improvements through material flow racks

Created, implemented, and managed a work load capacity spreadsheet to determine machine capacity via cycle times

Created and managed a database that shift supervisors get OEE calculations immediately for shift reporting tasks

Managed an improvement suggestion system that utilizes the maintenance connection database for closure tracking

Developed and managed a plant metric system that tracks machine OEE and creates breakdown duration trend charts

Led projects that utilized machine cycle times and tact time to determine plant layout for improved process flow

Managed a logistics project on scanner labeling throughout plant integration that controlled and tracked incoming/outgoing implementation material

Trained and mentored team leaders and supervisors on 5 Why / Root Cause Analysis action plan meetings on the shop floor focused on resolving issues related to machine and quality performance improvements

Performed daily Kaizen events at flash board meetings, quality board reviews, and counter-measure board reviews

Created Value Stream Maps and flow diagrams to see process flow and create improvements on material flow

Key Accomplishments

Managed a team to improve the Plant KPIs by 67% to accomplish 5 out of 6 above target

Managed production and maintenance teams to elevate the plant OEE by 20% in only 3 months

Improved KPI level from 1 out of 6 above target too consistently holding 5 out of 6 for 4 consecutive months

Created and Managed a production reporting database that shows real time OEE per machine every shift every day

Created and Managed a spreadsheet that calculated plant material DOH monthly values from the shipping schedule

Managed several CI projects simultaneously in 2 facilities while managing the Lean Transformation

Created and Managed the plant training database that tracked all training activities

5/2013 – 10/2013 Process Improvement Engineer Constellium, Novi, MI

Created and implemented transfer line cleaning process on 3 multi-stage transfer lines

Designed a scrap chute that eliminates aluminum scrap chips from accumulating at the base of the transfer line robots

Created a PM database that enables the maintenance manager to access and manage all PM tasks

Implemented TPM on 2 plants in Novi and displayed progress on a visualization board

Performed machine cycle time Analysis on welding, CNC, and multi-stage transfer lines

Performed maintenance facilitator tasks by creating maintenance schedules and all plant PM work tasks

Led different TPM events with over 20 people in attendance

Key Accomplishments

Improved the data collection system that was driven by operators inputting data per machine function on a production film that was collected and posted on machine performance tracking boards

Created a TPM database for all Novi East and West facility machines that enabled scheduling, planning, tracking, and execution of PM tasks shared by maintenance and production personal

11/2010 – 4/2013 CI Project Manager Gonzalez Production Systems, Oak Park, MI

The Gonzalez family of companies is a major full-service supplier to the automotive, aerospace, military defense, and communications electronics industries, and the GPS division specializes in manufacturing of closure, welding and assembly systems.

Managed the Gap & Flush (VOH) CI program consisting of 6 robot vision systems at different plants

Managed all closure system quality tasks for FRAP Hood & Deck lid projects: drill hole study, CMM checks, dimensional certifications, sealer / mastic panel teardown studies, weld teardown studies, and all Safety buyoffs

Integrated 6 different projects into assembly plants located in US, CANADA, and MEXICO

Controlled budget and met deadlines by outsourcing technical contractors for field service support

Traveled Domestically and Internationally to different plants to close open issues, motivate plant personnel to take ownership of the cell, and manage the closure system integration into the existing production system

Key Accomplishments

Performed the best in-house Tooling buyoff for 2012 on the FRAP Hood & Deck lid projects

Obtained 25% profit margins on FRAP’s CD391 Hood & Decklid lines by reducing installation/prove-out labor costs

Increased profit margins by 5% from utilizing lessons learned and integrating them in future validation methods

Generated over $1.5mm of revenue by implementing & negotiating over 100 design changes on the 6 VOW systems

03/2010 – 11/2010 Lean Six Sigma Black Belt / Project Manager Quality Metalcraft, Livonia, MI

A prototype & low-volume production automotive supplier who has 43 single-action, double-action, and hydraulic presses that produce small brackets to vehicle structural components for Chrysler, GM, Ford, and the U.S. Military

Created a 10-layer process map analysis from information that was extracted from the shop floor experts

Developed a shop floor communication plan that uses a Visual Management - Andon board to stage future C/O’s

Used Minitab to analyze different processes, improvement idea clarification, and the final process measurement

Key Accomplishments

Improved the Die Changeover time from a 118-minute average to a controlled 58-minute average

Led a team of LSS Black Belts who executed the DMAIC process to reduce die changeover times by 49%

Developed SOP for die changeover process and integrated improvement changes into the process

07/1992– 06/2009 Throughput Coordinator (Paint shop) Chrysler, Sterling Heights, MI

Generated daily reports and suggested improvements that would maximize daily production output efficiency

Tracked overall paint shop performance via Jobs Per Hour


09/2005- 08/2008 MBA in International Business Administration Baker College Auburn Hills, MI

06/2002-06/2005 BS in Industrial Technology/Engineering Baker College Auburn Hills, MI

09/1995-05/2001 Associate of Applied Science/Vehicle Design Macomb Community College Warren, MI


01/2010-10/2010 Lean Six Sigma Black Belt / Program Management (PMP) Center for Professional Studies

Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt by the Innovative Solutions Group: Certification number: 1025

12/2008-08/2009 Master Certificate in Six Sigma Villanova University

08/1993-05/1994 Automotive Design (Layout) Bosca

01/1991-07/1991 Automotive Design (Automotive Tooling) Lewis and Hanke

01/1990-01/1991 AutoCAD (Tooling/2D) National Education Center

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