Silfex, Inc. 
Intermediate level
Advanced level

Level loading, increased flexibility, higher inventory turns

Monday, Oct. 19 Location Code
7:45am-2:15pm Departure area 1, 2nd floor MT/04

This tour is for U.S. citizens only.

Become proactive to meet fluctuating customer demand

Learn how to convert value streams with high variability and reactive schedules into level-loaded products; use lean tools, heijunka, visual management, pull systems, setup reduction and standard work; flexibly meet customer demand while shrinking inventory.


Hear practical lean strategies for improving flexibility to meet customer demand while decreasing inventory. See how Silfex converted value streams marked by high variability and fluctuating schedules to level-loaded products, while maintaining 100 percent on-time delivery. Meanwhile, scheduled ship dates improved from 40 percent to 85 percent. Get inside information on boosting inventory turns from 11 to 19, decreased overtime costs while running higher volumes and effective visual scheduling. Learn how they ship individual part numbers to customers numerous times a week, compared to previous weekly shipments. Using visual whiteboards, daily quantities for each part number are calculated and scheduled for the following week in 90 minutes, without the use of an ERP system. Understand systemic daily improvement through the integrated use of lean tools, pull systems, setup reduction, heijunka, visual management and standard work. Hear how Silfex expanded level loading to every product family and works to improve flow through all processes.


Silfex is the world’s largest supplier of high-purity custom silicon components and assemblies. It serves a broad base of high-technology markets. The company’s products range from silicon ingots to rings, electrodes and custom parts that support a variety of functions in the semiconductor industry and process equipment, photovoltaic equipment and communications/optics/photonics markets. Silfex operates in Eaton, OH with 200,000 sq. ft. of manufacturing space. It encompasses fully-integrated processes including design/prototype and production of raw materials (growing silicon ingots), precision machining and global distribution. Silfex received an AME Manufacturing Excellence Award.

Tour Host

Randi Hollen is the materials manager, senior, for Silfex. He has worked seven years for Silfex, leading various CI projects.

Colleen Friedsberg is the manufacturing manager, senior, for Silfex. She has been with the company 12 years and has led numerous CI projects.

Note: This tour is for U.S. citizens only. All attendees must pass MK Denial (a website that allows access to a database of denied and restricted parties.)

Restrictions / Requirements

To participate in a tour, all attendees must adhere to and respect the tour hosts' restrictions and requirements.
Non-adherence may exclude you from a tour.

  • No cell phones
  • No competitors
  • No recording devices
  • U.S. citizens only
  • Leather like closed-toe shoes (No high heels)
  • Long or short-sleeved shirt/blouse
  • Long pants (no shorts, skirts, dresses)
  • Safety glasses
  • Signed non-disclosure agreement