John Thomas | Senior Consultant
John is passionate and authentic in his application of lean methodologies to support team efforts to drive improvement, working collaboratively with all key stakeholders across a number of industries.
John enjoys coaching and developing team members with varying and diverse backgrounds and capabilities in a focused approach to continuous improvement.
John received initial training in lean in 1988 during his technician apprenticeship and has since developed a broad range of skills which are highly effective in driving business improvement. During his time with Electrolux, John received training in lean improvement practices from JMAC (Japan Management Association Consultants) which allowed the business to realize an
improvement in productivity in excess of 20%.
John became General Manager of Cooper Standard Automotive Australia at the age of 39 and utilized lean tools and developed a lean culture to drive EBITDA improvement from 2% to 28% over a 3 year period. This resulted in the Australian division shifting from a group global ranking of 50th of 52 group companies to be the leading company as measured by EBITDA% to sales.
John has consistently applied lean methodologies in a hands-on approach across automotive, mineral resources, white goods and the construction products industry in Europe, China and Australia over the past 30 years, with 20 years working in management positions.
Lean improvement methodologies
- Advanced product quality planning
Tecalemit – Managing Director, Australia
Completely restructured the business by divesting the automotive product content during a 30 month project without customer disruption. Used 5S as a primary lean approach to reduce footprint, reduce lead time and increase productivity.
Johnson Controls Australia – Manufacturing Manager
Established a greenfield operation from the ground up, and recruited and trained a fantastic team of 100 people to launch the sequenced assembly (batch of one) of a complete range of interior trim systems for GM Holden. Utilised video SOP for training and created a plant-wide live visual management system to promote a whole-team approach to production. Developed a workforce proficient in the creation of pitch time diagrams and in the use of ECRS (eliminate, combine, rearrange and simplify) to continuously improve productivity and work content balance.
Electrolux– Assembly Production Manager
Coached teams comprising of operators, team leaders, supervisors and engineers in understanding current state and developing and executing future state solutions to drive improvement. During a 2 year period realised direct labour reduction of >180 FTE.
PIHA – Manufacturing Operations Manager
Introduced VSM as a key tool to enable a productivity and lead time improvement in the manufacture and fabrication of HDPE spools and fittings.
PWO – Subsidiary Project Director
Led a team of 13 project engineers to learn, implement and utilise a bespoke project management solution developed by the systems team in Germany to manage 120 live projects in China for OEMs including Mercedes, BMW, GM and Volkswagen. The system was used to manage over 3,000 projects globally. Coached the team in the use of lean methodology to reduce cost, reduce lead time and improve OEE.