SOURCE: Pelion Systems

October 17, 2006 08:00 ET

Manufacturers Can Actively Manage Their Value Streams With Pelion's Next Generation EasyVSM™ Tool

Easy to Learn, Easy to Use, and Easy to Grow With Application Provides Flexible Model for Rapidly Identifying Process Inefficiencies and Accelerating Lean Transformation

BOULDER, CO -- (MARKET WIRE) -- October 17, 2006 -- Pelion Systems, a market leader in Manufacturing Operating Systems powered by Lean principles, today announced the release of EasyVSM™, an enhanced tool within Pelion's Lean workbench that enables manufacturers to evolve their methods of Value Stream Mapping (VSM) and actively manage the activities, connections and flows that define the production environment and supply chain.

Though capturing and visualizing the value stream is central to creating process efficiencies and driving waste out of plant operations, many manufacturers continue to rely on manual methods and tools that provide only a static view of production and the touchpoints that surround it. In fact, according to AMR Research in the April 2006 research brief "Lean Value Stream Mapping Tools: The Vendor Landscape," authored by Senior Vice President of Research Judy Sweeney, "Over 80% of companies we interviewed for this piece still use white boards and sticky notes in the Lean VSM process."

A powerful tool for building dynamic process renderings, EasyVSM builds an important foundation capability to "Bring the Value Stream to Life" in a standalone workbench format. Process Improvement, Lean and Six Sigma teams can supplement or even replace manual whiteboard and chart paper processes with this easy-to-learn and easy-to-use program.

Most importantly, the data that is generated during visioning exercises is organized in a usable format for driving change and can be dynamically updated as future conditions emerge. This capability enables managers to not merely visualize what is happening within the plant but make rapid adjustments as well using a smart, graphical model that ensures operations remain Lean and in tune with changing events affecting supply and demand.

"As research firms have noted, manufacturers are looking to increase the business impact from their mapping of value streams. EasyVSM addresses this need in a format designed to rapidly identify process inefficiencies while providing the added agility dimension of value stream analysis," said Dave Gleditsch, chief technology officer at Pelion Systems. "It's such a waste to see hard-working teams miss the opportunity to turn their ideas into concrete information assets. Our tool is designed to capture and leverage data for maximum value."

EasyVSM provides a unique opportunity for manufacturers to extend the impact of their Lean initiatives, driving toward advanced Lean Engineering methods and overcoming the challenges imposed by geographically dispersed teams.

"Eliminating waste is the goal of Lean Manufacturing. Waste is nearly always found between functions in a value stream. And the bigger the distance, the larger the waste," commented Ralph Rio, research director, ARC Advisory Group. "Value Stream Mapping, which is the primary Lean methodology for identifying waste, has been near impossible for people in multiple facilities. Software like Pelion's EasyVSM allows people who are not co-located to participate as a true team. Huge new opportunities for process improvement can be rapidly exposed via EasyVSM."

In guiding process definition to support streamlined product and material flow, EasyVSM dynamically delivers the following capabilities:

--  Mapping current state and future state options with great clarity and
    flexibility
--  Supporting the variety of symbols and standards as defined in the
    texts Learning to See and Mixed Model Value Streams
--  Collaborating on Value Stream Mapping across the entire enterprise
    while enabling powerful presentations and visual communication boards at
    any one location
--  Organizing cycle times and changeover times, production volumes,
    information flows, staffing requirements and inventory strategies
--  Calculating value-add and non-value added times
--  Visualizing high leverage projects, kaizen events and operating
    programs
--  Driving verified data forward to grow with through Value Stream
    Modeling and Value Stream Management applications
    
EasyVSM integrates easily with Microsoft Office products as well as major ERP systems to extend the value of existing data. The application is priced at $399 per copy and is available now for download at www.pelionsystems.com. Currently, customers can receive a $250 discount on their EasyVSM purchase by completing a brief online survey.

About Pelion Systems

Pelion Systems is a market leader in Lean Manufacturing solutions that drive flexibility to help manufacturers solve the customer service vs. profitability challenge. Working with Pelion's expert consultants, Lean Manufacturing Operating System, and individual workbenches, companies with complex processes and production environments are able to achieve rapid transformations and continuous improvements in areas such as labor, inventory and shipping costs while simultaneously improving cycle time and delivery capabilities. Pelion's technology integrates easily with and extends the value of existing ERP, SCM, and plant-floor systems. Solutions are able to scale from a single facility to an extended enterprise implementation, applying Lean principles to synchronize production, supply, and distribution and form a true demand-driven network. Pelion is headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, with sales offices in Detroit and Chicago. For more information, please visit www.pelionsystems.com.