API Industrial Engineering Evaluations

API Industrial Engineering Evaluations

A producer of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) wanted a focused industrial engineering evaluation of one of their production buildings. The goal of this project was to identify improvement opportunities and recommend solutions that could also be adopted in other areas of the plant. The evaluation included processing areas, logistics, inventory locations, operating strategies and information flows. We also dollarized the potential savings resulting from the improvement options.

Our team identified bottlenecks and improvement opportunities in various areas of the building. For each improvement opportunity, we determined several potential solutions and then compared the options using value stream maps (VSMs) and discrete event simulation (DES) models. The DES model was used to run different ‘what-if’ scenarios and quantify savings. We also developed cost estimates for each solution.

Client Challenge: Dollarize the savings

“Savings realized from improvement options should be dollarized. Costs (installation, construction and labor) for each option are required to be estimated. This building should serve as a showcase model for future industrial engineering improvements at the plant.”

CRB’s Role:

We assessed current operating and logistics conditions to determine improvement opportunities, quantify savings and provide cost estimates for improvement options.

How we helped:

  • Site visits, process and line observation, and data collection
  • Understanding operations, system interactions and information flows
  • Created VSMs and developed DES models for all products made in the building
  • Identified improvement opportunities and quantified savings
  • Provided cost estimates for all recommended options


  • Potential increase in annual revenue of $7.9M
  • Identified improvement options which increase throughput, reduce cycle times and reduce operational inefficiencies
  • Calculated staging space requirements for raw materials, intermediates and finished goods
  • Recommended several new project opportunities to their internal teams
  • Presented results and analysis to their site leadership team

Project Details


Confidential Client


Midwest, USA

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