A new team, a new department and a new way of working for a well-established biologics company.
This company was going through a huge amount of change when they invited me in to help them with their new Operational Excellence department. They had just been taken over by new owners and the new board was in place, with big goals for the business. The new Director was due to start soon, and they needed 2 senior OE Leaders to begin the work of turning this manufacturing site into a Lean operation.
The Chief Operating Officer described the challenge and was very honest. Explaining that the company was really at the start of their Lean Journey, she outlined her requirement for 2 specialist leaders to come in and start working with the Director on building a Lean culture and implementing Six Sigma.
The challenge was two-fold: the company was going through a huge expansion phase with capital investment into equipment, buildings and people, with new products coming online too. The OE Leaders would need to implement Lean Manufacturing to capitalise on the growth phase and create efficiencies in the process whilst also bringing the existing production on board with Continuous Improvement through training and developing the workforce. Strong Lean Six Sigma projects experience was required in addition to a background in manufacturing, ideally pharmaceutical or biotech. Of course they also needed to be personable and persuasive, to sell this new way of working to the business.
Working through a retained search model, Donaldson Solutions created a map of the sector and approached individuals over the coming months and successfully placed these key roles in this new department.
The company was looking at very ambitious growth plans and next the Director identified the need for Programme Managers to lead the programmes of projects that would deliver the growth required. 2 Programme Managers were needed to cover expansion projects and products streams in addition to implementing a virtual PMO structure throughout this global business. High-level skills in the mechanics of programme management were vital, in addition to people skills and a familiarity with the nature of the highly-regulated environment within biotech manufacturing.
Again, working as an executive search partner with the client, Donaldson Solutions identified those individuals in the industry with the required experience and approached them over a number of months to deliver on these 2 assignments successfully.
The team continues to grow, with both internal and external hires. The company has now begun to see the benefits of the Lean Manufacturing and Programme Management expertise that has been brought in through Donaldson Solutions. All of these 4 placements have been given extremely positive feedback from the individuals placed into these roles, in addition to excellent feedback from the client as to the quality and long-term fit of the people with the business.
The business is poised for its next period of growth and now has a very strong Operational Excellence department including these 4 key hires.
Image credit: www.austarlabs.co.au