Polyus provides its employees with extensive training in the engineering field in order to foster innovation and ensure that there is always a ‘Kaizen’ (meaning continuous improvement) culture at the company.
Over several years of programmes aimed at improving operational excellence, thousands of concepts have been submitted, with the best ones being brought to life. The positive economic effects of these programmes have totaled tens of millions of rubles.
The company has recently begun to celebrate the people behind the best concepts, and employees of the Kuranakh Mill have contributed a number of new Kaizen ideas over the past month.
One of the processes which needed enhancing at the mill was the pump performance. Following a brainstorming session, the mill specialists managed to enhance this process by arranging control of the pump from a more convenient location. Dmitry Zhukov, Senior Foreman at the Automation Service division, and Mikhail Nazarov, Deputy Chief Automation Engineer, were recognized as the best problem-solvers of the week, and subsequently the mill has become much more efficient for those working there, as they had enhanced control over the production process. The operators of agitators and mills at Polyus can now continuously monitor the performance of equipment they are using, overseeing the whole process, which allows them to take prompt action in any emergency situations or during periods of sub-optimal equipment performance.
Another important issue relates to the storage and provision of inventory equipment and supplies for various departments at the process plant. To solve the problem quickly and avoid any confusion among employees, it was decided that an up-to-date storage facility had to be established. This has consisted of systematically organized and labeled boxes for storing inventories so they cannot be mixed up. This has resulted in faster equipment deliveries, and reduced the likelihood of distribution errors. The idea was put forward by Alexandrina Bakhtieva, Stock-keeper, along with Andrey Bilyushov, Process Equipment Repairman.
There have also been some other positive changes in other areas of the Polyus business. Submitting a request for the use of a vehicle used to be a complex process, since the request had to be logged in a logbook at a dispatching room. To optimize the procedure, an electronic logging system was developed in a fashion that made it available for sharing online. The idea was suggested by Alexey Sitenko, Senior Analyst at Production Economics, together with Tatiana Shevkunova, Senior Dispatcher. Now everyone can send a request via a computer and monitor its progress status, vehicle registration and the number of passengers. This helps to save time, but more importantly, the initiative minimizes the interaction between staff members, a crucial requirement during the Covid-19 pandemic.