Guide Dogs charity gets a lesson in efficiency from Toyota

As part of a three-year partnership with Guide Dogs, Toyota has improved the efficiency of the charity's harness workshop near Leamington Spa.

Guide Dog in the back of a Toyota Prius

In 2017, Toyota GB employees selected Guide Dogs as the company’s chosen charity, with the carmaker signing up for a three-year partnership.

Two years on, Toyota is, er… taking a lead role at the Guide Dogs’ harness workshop near Leamington Spa, where an average of 1,500 harnesses are produced every year.

A team led by Nick Pearn, senior specialist from the Toyota Lean Management Centre (TLMC), reviewed every aspect of the production and distribution of the harnesses.

They observed that good ‘kaizen‘ principles are being used, with a recent reduction in the time it takes to produce 30 harnesses from 653 to 609 minutes.

However, Toyota made a series of recommendations, resulting in zero parts shortages and improved efficiencies. The result: guide dog owners would never be kept waiting thanks to a 24-hour turnaround on new orders.

Toyota’s system proved so successful, it was rolled out to other products, including handles, collars and leads.

‘A fresh perspective’

Toyota supports Guide Dog charity

David Pryke, workshop manager at Guide Dogs, said: “It’s been really useful to work with Toyota and gain a fresh perspective of our harness making system.

The Toyota measures led to a 66 percent reduction in inventory levels, reducing valuable time and costs. These significant efficiency improvements can instead be invested in other valuable areas to improve lives of people living with sight loss.”

While this is good news for Guide Dogs, for us it’s a chance to embed a video of Banjo the Toyota GB guide dog playing at the National Breeding Centre.

Warning: this video contains scenes of a delightful nature which some viewers might find satisfying. The patented cute o’meter is reading off the scale.

Related Articles

Gavin Braithwaite-Smith
Writer with a penchant for #FrenchTat. Also doing a passable impression of Cousin Eddie in an Italian-German beige motorhome.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Win on Sunday, sell on Monday: How Formula 1 markets road cars

See how car manufacturers make use of Formula 1 to help sell their road cars to the general public

Top Gear vs. The Grand Tour: which presenters had the best cars?

Ahead of the launch of The Grand Tour, we ask: which presenters owned the best cars?

Safe Car Wash: the app fighting modern slavery

A new app called Safe Car Wash is proving to be a valuable weapon the public can wield in the fight against modern slavery

How to protect your car during the COVID-19 lockdown

The UK's coronavirus lockdown may mean your car isn't being driven. Here's how to keep it safe and roadworthy for when you need it.

Crafty cabbie: how do we really feel about ride-hailing price hikes?

Ride-hailing company Kapten investigated people's reactions to price hikes and extra charges in a very different scenario to paying for a lift