The objective of this paper is to identify tools and methodologies to increase productivity in commercial steel fabrication shops. The effectiveness of these tools and methodologies has been demonstrated through a case study in a Canadian steel fabrication shop. Three different productivity improvement concepts were identified as suitable for the steel fabrication environment. Lean, Six Sigma, and the Theory of Constraints (TOC). Lean was retained as being the most suitable to steel fabrication due to its low cost, focus on quality, and built in continuous improvement process. In the case study, Lean tools were identified and applied to address three top productivity issues. A baseline was established for existing productivity for a fitting station over a period of two weeks. Selected tools were implemented, and a session was conducted to educate the workers on the new processes and tools. Lastly, the productivity was recalculated, the results were analyzed, and recommendations were made.
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