LeanBlog Podcast #22 – Allan Wilson, CEO of “Factory Logic” (Acquired by SAP), on Lean Software


Episode #22 of the Podcast is a discussion with Allan Wilson, CEO of Factory Logic, a software company that was acquired by SAP late last year. Allan is now the VP of Lean Manufacturing Operations for SAP. We talk about the role of technology and software in a Lean implementation.

In the interest of full disclosure, I worked for Factory Logic a few years back, including time under Allan's leadership, but I have no financial interest in the company or products.

Click here for the main LeanBlog Podcast page with all previous episodes.

Show Notes and Approximate Time, Episode #22

  • 0:20 Background and history on Factory Logic
  • 2:00 Using software to help standardize processes in a Lean factory, including Johnson Controls, a key customer
  • 5:20 Value proposition for the software on the factory floor (now known as SAP's XLPO product, or “Lean Planning and Operations”)
  • 6:00 CONWIP (constant work in process)
  • 6:20 POLCA (not the dance!)
  • 7:30 The SAP acqusition of Factory Logic, what will the impact be? 12,000 manufacturing companies use SAP
  • 12:20 The XLPO/Factory Logic applications will still integrate to other ERP systems
  • 13:00 What about the mindset of having a choice between Lean and technology, that many Lean folks are against technology/software. What about the Toyota Way principle of using technology “that supports your people and processes”?
  • 16:30 XMII definition
  • 19:00 Are Lean people becoming more accepting of technology?
  • 22:00 What are some of the examples where a large company struggles to roll out Lean in a consistent way across plants?
  • 22:30 BTR = Build to Replenishment
  • 24:00 Building a consistent Lean model throughout your global company

If you have feedback on the podcast, or any questions for me or my guests, you can email me at leanpodcast@gmail.com or you can call and leave a voicemail by calling the “Lean Line” at (817) 993-0630 or contact me via Skype id “mgraban”. Please give your location and your first name. Any comments (email or voicemail) might be used in follow ups to the podcast. Click here for the main LeanBlog Podcast page with all previous episodes.

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Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


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