A Kaizen a day keeps Dr Pepper from going astray

Going Lean can benefit a multitude of companies, from billion-dollar corporations to brand new startups. Creating a Kaizen workplace is a matter of being able to change traditional practices and operations to be more efficient, and as long as you’re willing to adopt a “nothing is sacred” attitude, going Lean can have a great impact on your company’s financial and cultural well-being.

Take, for example, Dr Pepper. The company has been around for nearly 130 years and has been selling essentially the same product all this time. However, despite being accustomed to similar production practices during this extensive period, Dr Pepper recently decided to go through a Kaizen transformation and adopt Lean production practices.

As investment blog Seeking Alpha notes, the changes have done the company a world of good. Since diving headfirst into continuous improvement a year ago, the corporation has implemented more than 160 Kaizen adjustments. These changes have helped save $94 million in cash productivity initiatives.

“Because of continuous improvement initiatives, Dr Pepper Snapple Group has reduced its inventory costs by $58 million lower than at the same time last year,” the news source adds. “When you compare that on a daily sales basis, that is an improvement of eight days.”

Dr Pepper has also made improvements that allowed the company to reduce the total number of warehouses open by 10, cut the number of miles its trucks drive daily and implement more than 500 safety improvements. For a Kaizen transformation that is only a year old, these are some truly impressive results. In fact, Seeking Alpha cites Dr Pepper’s continuous improvement movement as one of the reasons investors should buy stock in the company.

Any company can transform

The point to take away from Dr Pepper’s Kaizen transformation is that any company can integrate Lean methodologies and mindsets if it honestly believes it can see success with them. It doesn’t matter if you’re a 100-year-old company that has done the same thing for decades or a young business still trying to establish its footing, striving to reduce waste and bolster efficiency are beneficial goals to achieve.