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Lufthansa Technik promoting ideas management

Over 2,000 ideas submitted - employees' ideas account for 10 per cent of results

Staff at Lufthansa Technik Group in Germany contribute almost 10 per cent to the company’s result through savings from ideas submitted. Lufthansa Technik saves around EUR 40 million annually by implementing creative ideas for improvement suggested by teams in the hangars, workshops and offices, a press release said Monday (Novembr 14, 2017). A new idea management concept called “my ideas”, set up to exploit this potential, has already received 2,000 ideas.

Thousands of ideas

Commenting on the submitted ideas, Dr. Oliver Reichel-Busch, Head of Corporate Idea Management at Lufthansa Technik, said: “Engineers want to make things better. It’s in our DNA. The rollout of the ‘my ideas’ concept is the starting signal for a new ideas culture. Even more streamlined processes and a modern IT tool will accelerate the process of submitting an idea, verifying it and deciding on its implementation.” Lufthansa Technik is by far the most important ideas generator within the Lufthansa Group as a result. The ideas submitted yielded EUR 10.5 million euros in first-year benefits alone over the last 12 months and will be felt for a good four years averaged across all projects.

“my ideas” turning ideas into measures

Lufthansa Technik has always offered attractive monetary incentives for suggestions about improvement. The “my ideas” tool means decisions on ideas can be made faster and the team’s knowledge can be funnelled into specific measures. The new process ensures that a suggestion for improvement lands promptly on the right manager’s desk. Peter Schuerholz, Idea Manager at Lufthansa Technik, noted: “We have therefore been able to significantly optimize the often tedious and protracted search for the right decision-maker.” Additional experts can be included in the decision as many suggestions involve complex processes or repair procedures.

Enormous savings potential

A team of mechanics at Lufthansa Technik in Hamburg, for example, was bothered by the considerable effort required in their garage to record data from damage analyses. A photo of the damage first had to be transferred to a computer, then converted to a pdf document and finally incorporated into an SAP damage report. The team developed an app that allows a photo, taken on a tablet PC, to be linked automatically with a second photo of the barcode on the order sheet and then added to the report in the system.

The new app takes only one to three minutes instead of up to ten minutes per process previously. This in-house development – now called “t/complaint” – spread rapidly through Lufthansa Technik’s workshops, and is being used by over 50 departments. The savings potential is enormous in view of thousands of similar recordings per year.

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