BestPractice Network

Our industry partners

The best partners help us to make lean transformation transparent.

We are very happy to be able to present to you companies who have achieved world class in subsectors or in the comprehensive interaction of lean mechanisms.

It gives us great pleasure to welcome you in our Lean Community.

ABB Schweiz AG (Switzerland)

ABB is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people.

The business division ABB HCS (High Current Systems) develops, sells, produces, installs and maintains generator circuit breakers on a world-wide scale. ABB HCS is market leader and a globally recognized technology leader. ABB HCS wants to stick out in terms of technology, quality as well as competence. ABB HCS wants to achieve cost leadership with optimized processes in all disciplines to be profitable above average and in the long run. The business division has therefore been transferred into a Lean Enterprise. ABB HCS has been awarded in 2010 with the “Best Fabric 2010 in Europe” award as well as in 2015 with the Manufacturing Excellence Award.

Agfa-Gevaert HealthCare GmbH (Germany)

Agfa-Gevaert HealthCare GmbH

Agfa HealthCare is a leader in the fast-growing market of integrated IT and imaging systems, providing healthcare facilities with a seamless flow of information and a 360° view of patient treatment.

The Agfa Group has approximately 12,000 employees worldwide (around 800 of these at four German sites of Agfa-Gevaert HealthCare GmbH), generating sales of approximately 3 billion euros with around 11,000 products in the field of medical technology.
At the Peißenberg plant 280 employees of Agfa-Gevaert HealthCare GmbH produce medical devices in a range of variants at annual quantities of 100 to 3,000.

The company philosophy: using continuous production to produce what the customer requires, in the shortest of times and without wastage. This makes the plant a prime example of lean production. Production flows, with short through-put times and minimal stock holding. In the past four years alone the plant has been able to reduce its manufacturing costs by 22 percent.

In 2009 the Peißenberg plant was awarded the distinction of "Factory of the Year - Best Assembly". The plant is fit for the future and viewed as secure for the long term.

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Albrecht Jung GmbH & Co. KG (Germany)

Albrecht Jung GmbH & Co. KG was established in Schalksmühle/Sauerland in 1912. Under the motto "Fortschritt als Tradition" [Progress as tradition], the company has established itself within 100 years of successful company history as a specialist for switches and systems. With a second production site in Lünen, its own subsidiaries and numerous agencies across the world, JUNG is also a renowned player on the international market. Team work and innovative strength are the pillars of its success.

JUNG offers appliances and systems that convince with state-of-the-art technology, sophisticated design and comprehensive functionality. Its product range comprises switches, plugs, dimmers and guards in numerous variations. In addition, the portfolio also includes innovative systems to control functions in house or apartment, covering a wide range of applications: control of lighting or blinds, temperature control, radio technology including KNX technology, door communication and multi-media control. In addition to comfort and security, these products also meet specifications in terms of cost and energy efficiency. All JUNG products are manufactured in Germany. At its sites in Schalksmühle and Lünen, the company's output is at a consistently high level of quality that customers across the world can rely upon. These achievements by JUNG were recognised. As the first manufacturer in North-Rhine Westphalia, the company was awarded the "Made in Germany" certification by TÜV NORD. In May 2012, the brand strength of the company won a further award, the Plus X Award for the "Most Innovative Brand of the Year“ in the electrical and media technology product group. In addition, three new JUNG products of 2012 have been recognised with a Plus X Award – that is innovative strength "Made in Germany" which customers across the globe can rely upon!

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Autoliv INC (Poland)

Autoliv INC is an internationally leading supplier of safety systems for the automobile industry. The group disposes of production facilities on all five continents as well as development and research facilities and supplies well-known automobile manufacturers as for example GM, Land Rover, VW, Daimler, BMW, Renault, Volvo, Fiat, Toyota and Skoda.

Many international awards support their innovative potential, the quality of their products and of their production.

Since 1998 Autoliv Poland has been active with their head office in Oława and the two production facilities APT (Autoliv Poland Textiles) and APR (Autoliv Poland Restrain System).

Autoliv Poland Restrain System in Jelcz-Laskowice produces safety belts. On an area of 7,100m2, 500 employees are working according to the Autoliv Production System (APS).

APR is an important location within the Autoliv production network. With state-of-the-art production methods, they are consistently working to fulfil the requirements of customers and employees as well as to achieve the highest quality with competitive prices. Continuous improvement as well as the qualification and development of the personnel are significant pillars of this production philosophy. Due to these measures, APR achieved an international BestPractice standard.

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BMW Landshut Factory (Germany)

No BMW without a component from Landshut The BMW Landshut Factory produces light metal casting engine and chassis components, plastic components for car exteriors, carbon components, various cockpit and equipment ranges as well as cardan shafts, replacement engines and electrification parts.

Parts produced in Landshut are delivered across the globe to 29 BMW Group production and assembly sites in 14 countries.

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Daimler AG (Germany)

At the Mercedes-Benz plant in Untertuerkheim, the core parts of Mercedes cars are built. Future-oriented engines, gearboxes and axles for the entire range of Mercedes-Benz cars to meet the highest specifications.

Around 17,000 committed employees at the Untertuerkheim site and state-of-the-art technology make it possible to react quickly to market movements and customer requirements.

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ELESTA GmbH (Switzerland)

The ELESTA GmbH from Bad Ragaz is the leading producer in the field of relays with forcibly guided contacts. Elesta is a very innovative and dynamic company, that develops, produces and distributes our products for safety applications worldwide. As an innovation leader in this field Elesta is constantly looking for custom solutions for your requirement.

With an export share of 98%, ELESTA GmbH is extremely vulnerable to oscillations in the strength of the Swiss currency. Thanks to the stringent implementation of the lean management approach, it is in a position to face up to these challenges and to ensure ongoing production in Switzerland.  Over recent economically unstable years, notable success has been achieved thanks to lean management. Lean management is an integral part of the corporate culture of ELESTA GmbH and established in each and every department, in value-creating as well as in administrative areas. In 2012, ELESTA relays GmbH was recognised with the Swiss Lean Award.

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General Motors Manufacturing Poland - GMMP (Poland)

General Motors Manufacturing Poland - GMMP

GM Manufacturing Poland Factory belongs to the International General Motor Concern and is one of its 10 European factories which produce Opel/ Vauxhall brand cars. What gives our factory power, are three thousand of experienced workers and modern technologies. The consistent investments in bringing into live new models affects the good position among top automatic companies in Europe.

Over 98 % of cars produced in factory during three shifts, are exported to West and Central Union markets. GMMP export represents about 1,5 % of whole Polish exports

The factory is managed in accordance with the GM Global Manufacturing corporate system, thereby guaranteeing the highest quality, efficiency and flexibility. Currently in Gliwice there are produced Astra IV in the 5-door version, since September 3-door Astra GCT and family sedan Astra III will be produced there likewise. In February of this year, it have been announced that prestige cabriolet will be produce. The second half of the year will run the next version of Astra IV – 4-door sedan.

CMMP factory is responsible for the Astra platform across whole Europe, what means, that we not only manufacture this model, but also are responsible for the matters of quality and standards around all factories producing this model.

Production in this factory is held with care of the environment. A large number of investment in reducing energy consumption allowed increasing production without power consumption, and consequently reducing CO2 emission by 40 thousand tons per year. The company in still working on others project which are supposed to aimed air protection and reducing energy consumption.

Effects of this activities were appreciated inter alia by Minister of Environment, who have graded the awards for company for unusual scientific achievements.

The company has a policy of open doors, leading factures visiting programs, in which during 2011 visited us around 3000 people; and the probation program, which were taken by 200 of young engineers.

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DMG Mori (China, Germany, Italy)

Gildemeister AG

A full-liner in terms of technologies such as turning, milling, ultrasonic / laser as well as the according services. By means of consequent marketability, an area-wide direct marketing and customer-related services, the company guarantees a long-lasting and solid service net(work).

An important factor for success in this process is the consequent orientation on the world market which also enables the technological leadership of numerous products.

With the construction of a production location in Shanghai, the group further expanded its position on the Asian market under the name Deckel Maho Gildemeister Machine Tools (DMG) at the beginning of 2003. Staufen Shanghai in cooperation with DMG arranged “BestPractice Days” for managers there. The focus of this event was the exchange of experiences among participants and with experts.

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halstrup-walcher (Germany)


halstrup-walcher develops and manufactures innovative drive and measurement technology solutions which can be tailored to specific customer needs. Whether machinery needs to be re-calibrated or positive pressure needs to be maintained in the cleanroom, halstrup-walcher delivers effective, reliable technology - designed by people for people. Our customers (and their customers) are our focus.

For the benefit of our customers we have completely modernised our whole organisation in the last few years, and adopted a lean management approach. Our aim has been to succeed in providing high quality in every product area - at competitive prices and with short delivery times.  Our visitors are frequently amazed that a family-run medium-sized company with 120 employees can perform so systematically over the long term - but our success speaks for itself.

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HARTING Technology Group (Germany)

The HARTING Technology Group is skilled in the fields of electrical, electronic and optical connection, transmission and networking, as well as in manufacturing, mechatronics and software creation. The Group uses these skills to develop customized solutions and products such as connectors for energy and data transmission applications including, for example, mechanical engineering, rail technology, wind energy plants, factory automation and the telecommunications sector.

HARTING also produces electromagnetic components for the automotive industry, and is a specialist in industrial applications in the form of enclosures, housings, cabling and/or the assembly of individual or complete systems, as well as automated vending systems.

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LOCHMANN srl (Italy)

In a region, where economy and culture are deeply rooted in agricultural tradition, the LOCHMANN family specialised in innovative solutions for agricultural machines for an international market.

As part of LOCHMANN Group, LOCHMANN CABINS started out in 1983, developing products which stood out for their excellent quality and special attention to details. Their cabin systems use the latest technologies available and are produced on behalf of the most prestigious international manufacturers of tractors, construction machinery and special-purpose machines.

To this day LOCHMANN CABINS has been able to continually expand and consolidate its stable market position, largely thanks to a corporate structure that is characterised by expertise, professional service and experience. This allows the company to offer all customers maximum flexibility and top-quality products.

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MAN Trucks Sp. z.o.o. (Poland)

MAN Trucks Sp. z.o.o. (Poland)

Heavy range vehicles plant located in Niepołomice nearby Cracow belongs to the MAN Nutzfahrzeuge Group, which is a part of MAN SE Corporation. Assembly plant was built in a record time: since location decision being made in August 2005, with the foundation stone laid in June 2006 and SOP in July 2007 it has been less then two years. Site’s base area equals 250.000 sqm, from which 78.000 sqm is sheltered area containing assembly, paint shop and storage areas.

The Plant is considered as key step in MAN Nutzfahrzeuge international growth strategy and qualified as one of the most modern trucks production sites in the world. Capacity is stated on the level of 35.000 vehicles per year with two shifts and daily output of 140 vehicles.

Plant produces heavy range vehicle lines as follow:

  • TGX – purposed for long range transportation, with spacious and comfortable drivers cab, which is the most appreciated by customers, that reflected in wining the prize of „Polski Traker” magazine: „Ciężarówka Roku 2008 – Polska” (Truck Of The Year 2008 – Poland),
  • TGS – group of construction and urban transportation vehicles, purposed for short range distances.

Factory was designed and built according to rules of Lean Manufacturing, what makes it extremely efficient. Our processes in range of assembly and logistics are very effective, what ensures that Plant meets all MAN quality standards, with the maximum productivity and minimal production costs at the same time. Continuously improving our processes and using balanced change management we ensure stable work environment and the highest quality of production.

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Max Holder GmbH (Germany)

Max Holder GmbH

Max Holder GmbH is the leading manufacturer of multifunctional implement carriers with articulated-frame steering used year round by councils and service providers as well as in fruit orchards and vineyards.

For Holder, the commitment to Germany as the manufacturing base is part of its corporate philosophy.

Holder products are built for professional use under the most challenging conditions. Particularly for demanding task, the versatile vehicles can play to their full strength. It is not for nothing that the name Holder stands for longevity, quality and innovation, ever since 1888.

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MTU Friedrichshafen GmbH (Germany)

MTU Friedrichshafen GmbH

MTU Friedrichshafen GmbH as subsidiary of Rolls-Royce Power Systems AG (formely Tognum AG), supplies diesel engines and complete propulsion systems for ships, heavy land and rail vehicles, industrial applications und decentralized power-generating systems. To control and monitor its engines and propulsion systems the company develops and manufactures its own tailor-made electronic systems.

The range of products covering diesel engines from 20 kW to 9,100 kW and gas turbines is one of the most modern and comprehensive in the sector. To control and monitor its engines and propulsion systems the company develops and manufactures its own tailor-made electronic systems.

Guiding principles of manufacturing at MTU-Friedrichshafen:

  • Exploit the full potential of processes and technologies to continuously improve productivity
  • Establish reliable and robust processes and supply components of the highest quality
  • Continuously improve logistics processes and achieve a high degree of delivery reliability combined with low inventories and minimum cycle times
  • Encourage and motivate employees to reach our common goals
  • React to changing market and marginal conditions, deploying a high level of adaptiveness
  • Bein a learning organisation and continuously strive to improve

Only those ready to change will persist!

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RECARO Aircraft Seating GmbH & Co. KG (Germany, Poland)

RECARO Aircraft Seating GmbH & Co. KG

Recaro Aircraft Seating based in Schwäbisch Hall is a globally active manufacturer of premium aircraft seats for the leading airlines worldwide. The company has around 2,000 employees, including 1,000 working in Germany, and operates plants in Germany, Poland, the USA, China as well as Service centers in Europe, America, the Middle East and Asia.
Recaro Aircraft Seating generated sales of 409 million Euros in 2015. The company ranks among the world’s top three aircraft seat manufacturers. Recaro Aircraft Seating is part of the Recaro Group, which includes the independently operating division Recaro Child Safety (child car seats), in Marktleugast, Germany.


Quality and safety, adherence to delivery schedules and complete control of manufacturing costs with high variant variety and significant fluctuations in utilisation. Potential for improvement in all areas and motivation of employees. Open communication and Kaizen workshops as engine for change as key factor. Significant successes of lean activities are reduction in manufacturing costs and improvement of competitiveness.

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RHEINZINK GmbH & Co. KG (Germany)


RHEINZINK GmbH & Co. KG was founded in 1966 and is the leading manufacturer of titanium zinc products for building applications. The product range includes products with various surface structures for roofs, façades and roof drainage. RHEINZINK titanium zinc is a design-oriented modern material also used by a number of internationally renowned architects including Daniel Libeskind, Frank O. Gehry, Zaha Hadid. On the market, the RHEINZINK brand stands for quality, delivery service and innovation. The main manufacturing site in Datteln produces both semi-finished and finished products. The production process includes the only titanium zinc casting and rolling mill in the world, one of the most modern plants for surface treatment of the strip and various metal processing techniques for series and small series production. Today, RHEINZINK is a part of the Grillo Group, employs more than 800 people, with subsidiaries and sales offices in 28 countries across 5 continents.

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SEW-EURODRIVE GmbH & Co KG (Germany, Italy, Poland)


SEW-EURODRIVE is an internationally successful family-owned enterprise with about 16,500 employees and with a turnover of circa 2.772 billion Euros for 2016/2017. As one of the leading enterprises in drive engineering, SEW-EURODRIVE is a motor of progress and keeps the world moving every day with its drive motors and frequency converters, servo drive systems, local drive systems and industrial gear mechanisms.

Order processing within two hours by means of ...

  • Small factory units: Product-oriented production segments which work within precise customer-supplier relations.
  • Production islands: Autonomous production groups produce module components in a consumption-driven way.
  • Sprinter strategy: Strategic orientation and continuous improvement of business processes.
  • System of operating figures: Process performance is permanently measured and currently visualised. By means of a target agreement, employees are integrated into a function where they are responsible for the results.
  • Pursuit of excellence: Management and employees consequently optimise process by process and measure the degree of excellence.

The SEW Group in Germany comprises 28 technical offices and five service centres and assembly plants. In worldwide 48 countries SEW maintains 14 production plants as well as 79 Drive Technology Centres.

Johann Soder"The key to our financial survival and competitiveness lies to an increasing degree in the growing expansion of the ability to learn, to innovate and to change. During two re-organisation steps, we firstly introduced flow production according to the pull principle. The main results were reduced processing times and small closed quality loops. During the second step and within the scope of the planning of a new building, we had the opportunity to materialise our vision of a process-oriented factory. The fact that we won the renowned award “Best Factory” at the first onset is clear evidence that nothing is more successful than permanent change.”

Johann Soder
Geschäftsführer Technik, SEW-EURODRIVE GmbH & Co KG

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Voith Turbo GmbH & Co. KG (Germany)

Voith Turbo GmbH & Co. KG

Voith Turbo is a group division of Voith AG. As leading specialist for drive systems and components and respectable and competent partner of international customers, Voith Turbo stands for innovation, reliability and fairness in various operational areas. The company develops and manufactures state-of-the-art drive and brake systems for industrial, railway and marine applications – these are mechanic, hydrodynamic, electric and electronic solutions.

Antriebstechnik von Voith Turbo GmbH & Co. KGThe efficient transformation of primary energy in mechanical power – this is the world of Voith Turbo Industrie with their head office in Crailsheim. Their business activities range from power generation and supply over petrochemistry on- and offshore, chemistry, conveyor and materials preparation technology to mining, metallurgy and mechanical engineering.

Voith sets standards on the markets of energy, oil and gas, paper, transport and automotive. Established in 1867, Voith today is one of the biggest family enterprises in Europe with more than 39,000 employees, 5,3 billion euro turnover and over 50 locations worldwide. Today, one third of the entire paper production is produced on Voith paper machines. One third of the global power generated from water power is generated with turbines and generators from Voith Hydro. Drive elements from Voith Turbo are used all over the world in industrial facilities as well as for railways, road vehicles and water crafts. Voith Industrial Services is one of the leading suppliers of technical services.

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