Germany's best factory is producing for the BMW Group in Landshut. This is the conclusion reached by the expert jury for the "Industrial Excellence Award / Best Factory 2012", which voted the Exterior Plastics Production Department of the BMW Landshut plant the national winner for 2012. The European award honours outstanding production management which guarantees a permanent competitive advantage for the company. The award is presented by INSEAD (one of the world's largest and most renowned business schools), WHU – the Otto Beisheim School of Management and the trade journal Wirtschaftswoche.
The BMW Group has been operating a plastics production unit at its Landshut site since the 1960s. Each year, the 500 or so employees in the Exterior Plastics Production Department manufacture about 12 million plastic components for the outside of the vehicles. This corresponds to a volume of around 2,500 exterior components every working day. The scope of manufacture includes bumpers, side panels and spoilers. The finished components are then painted in 32 different standard colors and 200 optional colors at the BMW Landshut site and delivered to BMW Group vehicle plants in Germany and abroad.
Johannes Haider, head of the Exterior Plastics Purchasing, Production and Technology division, described the winning of the award as follows: "Being named the overall German winner of the Industrial Excellence Award reflects our concentration on value creation and has enhanced our focus on strategy, customer orientation and sustainability still further. At the same time, the award confirms our excellent performance as an in-house producer of components who can compete every day, just like our external suppliers. We also see the award as a motivation to overcome future challenges." The key to success is the workforce, Haider continues: "Our employees were the ones who made it possible to win the prize. I'm very proud of them."
The "Industrial Excellence Award" competition rates the long-term competitiveness of an organization or operating unit. Not only the operating unit itself, but all the processes throughout the entire production and logistics chain are assessed – from the supplier to the end customer. Another major contributing factor is the consistent pursuit of the interests of all stakeholders – customers and staff, and also shareholders, business partners and other interest groups. The Industrial Excellence Award focuses particularly on the areas of customer orientation, employee involvement, innovative strength, streamlined production processes, and sustainability.
The basis for the award is an extensive questionnaire which was developed by scientists at INSEAD, one of the world's largest and most renowned business schools, and WHU, the Otto Beisheim School of Management.
The BMW Landshut plant
In the BMW Landshut plant, around 3,000 employees manufacture engine and vehicle components from cast alloys, plastic components for interior and exterior use as well as cardan shafts and replacement engines which are delivered worldwide to almost all BMW Group car and engine factories. The factory, with its Landshut Technology and Innovation Centre (LITZ), is integrated at an early stage into the process of developing new vehicles. Within the BMW Group's worldwide production network, which comprises 25 production and assembly plants in 14 countries, the BMW Landshut plant plays an important role as a center of competence in the areas of electromobility and lightweight construction.
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