Innovation in Resource or Process Efficiency

During the annual Manufacturer’s Summit, a special award ceremony is held to celebrate the most innovative businesses and leaders in the Inland Empire. These leaders have great ideas for growing the business, dramatically improving performance and addressing some of the toughest challenges in today’s manufacturing industry.

E=mc² Innovation Awards will be presented to local manufacturers who submit the best innovations that result in tangible business improvement.

Congratulations to our recent award winner!

2017 Innovation in Resource Efficiency Winner


Address: 555 Monica Circle, Corona, CA 92880


CAI as a total solution company provides power generation and process skids to its customer around the world. The production system and the original shop layout introduced constant limits on the flow of the materials and the capacity of the production line. CAI utilized Lean Six Sigma Methodology in the following areas and modified its manufacturing process, material flow and work flow in the production area:

  • Resource Training (5S, Six Sigma Yellow Belt)
  • Manufacturing Process and Material Flow Optimization

At CAI we value out people the most and believe that no improvement is possible without having an on board and trained team. In the first phase of this innovative solution that CAI developed and utilized, all the production employees were trained on the 5S methodology which resulted in having a more organized workplace in the manufacturing area. In addition, the production employees were trained and received Six Sigma Yellow Belt certificate. This resulted in having a production team who is aware of the waste in the manufacturing process and has become a champion in reducing the common production deficiencies.

In the second phase of this process, CAI developed a new production process layout which implemented the manufacturing cell concept and resulted in performing manufacturing activities in parallel in multiple manufacturing cells. This increased CAI’s manufacturing capacity by 30%.

In addition, the material flow was considerably improved in the new production process layout. All the materials received for each project is marked and kitted in the inventory and sent to each manufacturing cell based on the assigned manufacturing task (pull system). This resulted in less waste on materials and the time spent from the manufacturing personnel to have the required materials to complete their assigned task.

Finally, CAI implemented a point of use (POU) in the manufacturing area to allow the manufacturing personnel to receive the consumables based on their assigned task without directly involving the inventory team which eliminated the wait time by the manufacturing team to receive the required consumables from the inventory. It also allowed the company to have visibility and robust control over the consumables and ensure that all the items are replenished when they are at their Min level.

The innovative solution that CAI implemented in its production system also incorporated the quality hold point for all manufacturing cells in the overall shop layout. This solution also allowed CAI to improve on the overall quality of the work and prevent rework on its active projects. Any possible production defects are captured at the initial stage and can be fixed prior to entering the main assembly line which minimizes the waste and rework.

The following layout presents the innovative solution that CAI implemented in its production facility.

View past award winners