Driving Engagement: Doing More with EIP/SIP

Michelle MachenMauser News

Mauser Packaging Solutions’ Earning Improvement Program (EIP) and Sales Improvement Program (SIP) are the foundation for optimizing efficiency and positioning the company for growth. EIP and SIP are partner programs that leverage the expertise of employees to improve products and facilities to ensure Mauser Packaging Solutions continues to provide best in class packaging solutions.

Introduced in 2021, EIP and SIP have already had significant impact on the company and are driving out culture for continuous improvement. So far over 14,000  submitted ideas have been converted to over 8,000 projects. And we are only just getting started.

Although these programs began in 2021, this year has resulted in a significant increase in employee engagement with EIP. “Starting at the executive level, greater accountability for EIP was placed on KPI scorecards for facility and operational leaders in 2023. In turn, operational and facility leaders became more motivated to support EIP with their teams. As a result, we have seen exponential growth in the level of engagement at the facility level in Small Packaging,” commented Brad White, Director of Continuous Improvement (NASP).

EIP Engagement is calculated based on the number of employees actively participating in EIP at any given time. An employee is considered engaged with EIP if they have submitted EIP suggestions or are participating in an implementation project during the specified period of time.

Maturity of the program is also driving increased engagement as the program becomes a more integrated part of how we operate the business. As leaders and employees move past initial exposure to the program and learning the process and system, more focus is given to generating ideas and implementing improvements. Instead of feeling like the program is an added task or responsibility, leaders are becoming more adept at incorporating discussions regarding improvements into the way they manage on a daily basis. As employees see ideas being implemented, their trust in the process grows and they become more invested in helping develop future improvements.

While management support of EIP is necessary to allocate financial and manpower resources to implement projects, local engagement with the program is the primary driver of success. At its core, EIP is about building a culture of engagement within the organization. Facilities are using a wide variety of activities and strategies to motivate employees to engage with the EIP process but the facilities that are experiencing the most success with EIP are the facilities where leadership is committed to having regular conversations with employees.

Activities and Strategies Driving EIP in Facilities:
  • EIP Committees
    EIP Committees are cross-functional groups of employees at each facility who review EIP suggestions and help determining which projects should be implemented. The cross-functional nature of these committees allows for transparency in the decision-making process and the consideration of a wide range of priorities when determining whether or not ideas can be implemented.

  • EIP Champions
    Implemented in Small Packaging, each facility selected one individual to take on the role of “EIP Champion” in addition to their other duties and responsibilities. EIP Champions represent a wide range of primary job roles and can be someone in management or an hourly position. Champions serve as part of the facility’s EIP committee and are responsible for supporting all EIP communications with employees.

  • EIP Focused Events (Lunch, Breakfast, Round Table Meeting)
    While these events may look similar to employee appreciation events, the main focus of the event is to facilitate conversations among a cross-functional group of employees to generate EIP suggestions. During these events, employees discuss potential ideas with peers and facility leaders.

  • Kaizen Events
    Kaizen Events are used to train employees on improvements implemented from EIP suggestions. Prioritizing proper training once an improvement is implemented enables employees to take ownership of the new process or procedure. Focused Kaizen events led by our Continuous Improvement Engineers is building contagious enthusiasm for EIP and equipping employees with the skills needed to sustain and expand the continuous improvement mindset within facilities.

  • Regular tracking and reporting of EIP status
    Departments and supervisors are tracking EIP engagement on a monthly basis and facility leaders are responsible for reporting on engagement and projects during MOR meetings which drives ownership of the process to the local level.

The potential impact of EIP and SIP is limited only by the level to which employees at all levels of the organization are engaged with the process. EIP and SIP need to be a state of mind that is present in everything we do, the foundation for optimizing efficiency and positioning the company for growth. These programs provide all employees with the opportunity to contribute to Mauser’s success and progress.

EIP and SIP drive continuous improvement by allowing our team members to express creativity and original thinking to generate cost savings. These programs also foster personal ownership in company success through implementation of projects that employees consider important. Our employees, and the communities in which we operate, benefit from successful projects that make our jobs more efficient, communities more prosperous, improve our products, and reduce our costs.