Standardising Work for Freight Container Repair


  • Reduced errors and defect rates by 95%.
  • Saved 140 working hours per month, amounting to £7000 savings.
  • Reduced rework from 7% to less than 0.4%.
  • Increased staff competency and confidence.


A port logistics support company, specialising in the inspection, repair and maintenance of freight shipping containers underwent rapid expansion over a six-month period. This resulted in a fourfold increase in customer orders. To meet demand, the business increased staff numbers and obtained extra plant and equipment.

This rapid expansion put additional pressure on the business to meet the stringent demand on product quality and strict delivery times.

The guys at PS56 made some cracking procedures which we use all the time especially with the new staff. It means I’m not on the shop floor every 10 minutes and I’ve got more time to deal with my big clients. They also helped smarten up the way we organise work so everybody knows what they are doing and things work a lot smoother. They have really helped my business and I’m looking forward to working with them again.

Michael Musson, Managing Director
UK Container Repairs


  • Decreased re-work: The quality of finish between staff was variable. Completed jobs were inspected by the business owner prior to dispatch. Sub-standard work was frequently identified (7%), this often required reworking or replacement.


  • On-time Delivery: Job completion time between staff was variable, especially with rework. This resulted in difficulties in predicting lead times for customers operating with tight schedules with the port authority and shipping agents.


  • Reduce management time: The business owner was too involved in the day-to-day operations, which involved the provision of additional inspection, intervening in works, expediting urgent work and coordinating site logistics. This meant he could not spend time developing the business.

The Solution

Production support 56 carried out an assessment and determined several underlying root causes based on standard work practices and communication between operations and management,

  • Identified best practice for the common activities based on client knowledge, customer and quality standards prescribed by the governing body, the IICL (The institute of International Containers Lessors)


  • Detailed work instructions with photographic cues were created which included the standard quality requirements and appropriate safety measures.


  • Simple and easy to use log sheets for information and data capture were designed for quality control purposes and a visual management system for shared tools, equipment and consumables was implemented to improve communication and organise the workshops.

The Benefits

Increased Efficiency

Freed up business owners time by 140 hours per month, equating to a £7000 per month saving. The business owner is using this time to gain more clients.

Reduced Rework

Provided a consistent quality of workmanship to a defined standard, resulting in less rework, from 7% to less than 0.4%.

Reduced Lead Times

Decreased the lead time for completion of repairs leading to improved relationship with biggest client.

Standardised Training

Provision of training pack for new staff improved competency and resulted in quicker on-job training times.

Better Communication

Written standardised practices enabled better communication between both staff and management.

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