1st Edition

Leading Continuous Improvement Projects
Lessons from Successful, Less Successful, and Unsuccessful Continuous Improvement Case Studies

ISBN 9780367271671
Published February 25, 2020 by Productivity Press
166 Pages 75 B/W Illustrations

USD $54.95

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Book Description

This book is a reference for continuous improvement project (CIP) leaders/facilitators in manufacturing and service organizations, students (undergraduate and graduate), academics responsible for managing senior projects (Capstone Projects) and teaching quality courses, and researchers interested in how organizations could produce more effective and efficient continuous improvement initiatives and projects.

The authors collected and analyzed information and results from CIPs they facilitated or co-advised, such as the improvement of the service level in a bottle manufacturing organization, reduction of changeover in a brewery manufacturing organization, reduction of ambulance response time, and reduction of scrap in a steel transformation manufacturing organization. Many of the CIPs were previously part of award-winning white papers documenting critical improvements.

Throughout this book, readers will learn:

  • different types of CIPs
  • metrics to identify successful CIPs
  • the 53 factors related to CIPs success
  • how to manage CIPs
  • behaviors to achieve outstanding results from CIPs.

Three of the chapters are supplemented with three or more case studies. In addition, the final chapter includes a list of behaviors expected from directors, continuous improvement managers, CIP leaders/facilitators, and CIP team members to obtain the major benefits from CIPs.

Table of Contents

PART I Continuous Improvement

Projects and Success Factors

Chapter 1 Continuous Improvement Projects (CIPs)


Chapter 2 Managing CIPs

PART II Successful CIPs

Chapter 3 Reduction of Ambulance Response Time

Chapter 4 Increasing the Fulfillment Level in a Wire and

Cable Company

Chapter 5 Setup Time Reduction in a Packaging Line in the

Beverage Industry

Chapter 6 Material Waste Reduction in the Food Industry

Chapter 7 Critical Success Factors for Continuous

Improvement Projects: A Multi Case Study

PART III Less Successful and Unsuccessful CIPs

Chapter 8 Less Successful CIPs

Chapter 9 Unsuccessful CIPs


Chapter 10 Summary

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Fernando Gonzalez Aleu has more than 15 years of experience in higher education organizations as a part-time undergraduate professor and thesis advisor (10 years), Industrial and Systems Engineering Program Director (2 years), and currently as a full-time Associate Professor in the Department of Engineering (4 years). Currently, Fernando is teaching the following courses: Quality, Productivity, and Competitiveness (undergraduate level) General Systems Theory (undergraduate level), Senior Project (undergraduate level), and Research Seminar (graduate level). Prior industry experience includes 15 years implementing quality systems, environmental systems, and management systems in Mexico and Chile. Overall, academic and practitioner, Fernando has been led/facilitated more than 30 continuous improvement projects and co-advise other 15.

Fernando received a BS in Mechanical and Management Engineering at UDEM, an MS at ITESM in 1999, and both an MS and Ph.D. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Virginia Tech in 2015 and 2016, respectively. His research is focused on continuous improvement projects and performance excellence models, producing one book, four journal papers, and 13 proceedings. He is a member of the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers, the American Society for Engineering Management, and the American Society for Quality, and Industrial Engineering and Operations Management.

Some of the honorary and services positions developed by Fernando include Board of Director of the Quality and Patient Safety at Christus Health (2018 – Currently), Board of Director at Society for Engineering and Management Systems (2018 – Currently), and Research Candidate at Mexico’s National Research System (2017 – Currently).


Prof. Jose Arturo Garza-Reyes is a Professor of Operations Management and Head of the Centre for Supply Chain Improvement at the University of Derby, UK. He is actively involved in industrial projects where he combines his knowledge, expertise and industrial experience in operations management to help organisations achieve excellence in their internal functions and supply chains. As a leading academic, he has led and managed international research projects funded by the European Commission, British Academy, British Council and Mexico’s National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT). He has published extensively in leading scientific journals, including the Int. Journal of Production Research, Int. Journal of Production Economics, Journal of Cleaner Production, Production Planning & Control, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, TQM & Business Excellence, Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, etc., and a number of international conferences. Professor Garza-Reyes has also published four books in the areas of operations management and innovation, manufacturing performance measurement and quality management systems. He is Co-founder and current Editor of the Int. Journal of Supply Chain and Operations Resilience (Inderscience), Associate Editor of the Int. Journal of Production and Operations Management, Associate Editor of the Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management and Editor-in-Chief of the Int. Journal of Industrial Engineering and Operations Management. Professor Garza-Reyes has also led and guest edited special issues for Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, Int. Journal of Lean Six Sigma, Int. Journal of Lean Enterprise Research, Int. Journal of Engineering Management and Economics, and Int. Journal of Engineering and Technology Innovation. Areas of expertise and interest for Professor Garza-Reyes include general aspects of operations and manufacturing management, business excellence, quality improvement, and performance measurement. He is a Chartered Engineer (CEng), a certified Six Sigma-Green Belt, and has over eight years of industrial experience working as Production Manager, Production Engineer and Operations Manager for several international and local companies in both the UK and Mexico. He is also a fellow member of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) and a member of the Institution of Engineering Technology (MIET).