Total Lean Transformation Of DNA

Industry: Biotech/Pharmaceuticals

Core Processes: Research, formulation, filling and quality control

Core Products: Reagents and assays.

Situational Overview

High product variety and varying volumes
Little or no lean knowledge
Highly skilled process experts
Described as “Big Science” in laboratories rather than a traditional manufacturing facility
Fragile processes

Vocabulary and approach were critical due to the specialised nature of the facility and employees.

Site Diagnosis Activity

  • Site level current and future state mapping.
  • Identification of business needs and issues.
  • Constraint/bottleneck capacity analysis including understanding the functionality/culture.
  • Continuous Improvement system and structure developed
  • Senior management team activity to define the next steps and an implementation plan.

The implementation was split into four main strands

Strategy and Ownership

Value Stream Mapping Workshops

  • Workshops with Senior Leaders developing the future state maps for each product family.
  • Coaching of Senior Management in Lean manufacturing tools, systems and organisations.

Business Need

Operational Improvement Workshops – Kaizen Blitz Events

  • Oligo synthesis workflow
  • Chemical synthesis workflow
  • Change Request Process workflow

Systems Development

Lean Team Coaching

  • Internal Lean team members assessed and appointed.
  • Standard improvement system implemented.
  • Steering structure developed.
  • Awareness training given site-wide
  • Kaizen team given coaching to become self-sufficient.


Middle Management Coaching

  • Bespoke Lean education programme
  • Bespoke Value Stream Mapping programme