Boat Build Hours Reduction


Boat Build Hours Reduction

Develop Consulting’s support was requested by a manufacturer of luxury motor yachts, with a strong pipeline of orders and challenges on achieving cost and time targets.

The company manufactures four yachts sizes on four separate production lines, all with different customer demands. Each boat also has different model variants.

The manufacturer was set to improve its position with new investment, a new leadership team, whilst also launching new boat models.


  • Reduced labour cost per boat from 10,100 hours down to 8,600 hours 1,500 hours saving per boat X £23 per hour = £34,500 per boat saving
  • Overall output increased from 22 boats p.a. to 27 boats p.a. at an average of £530k per boat
  • Revenue increase of x5 boats at £530k each = £2.6m for 2022
  • With the plan to build 30 of 45 line boats in 2023; 30 boats X £34,500 labour cost saving per boat = £1,035,000 saving for 2023
  • Optimising the production layout to allow for an additional yacht line, within the existing footprint
  • Develop Consulting data to provide production with the means to forecast build hours
  • Surface build issues to aid improved designs and reduce build time
  • Supporting the project management to relocate and consolidate key support areas
  • ROI: Based on 30 boats a year over the next 3 years and saving £1,035,000 per year, this will be a total saving of £3,105,000 with an investment of £382,000. Providing a ROI of £2,723,000 (7:1)
  • Additional revenue of £7.95m as a result of released capacity (over 3 years)


Our approach would be split into three phases for this work; stabilise, improve and optimise

  • Stabilise: To establish a pilot boat line in which we engage with the local team and introduce tools to improve control, grip and transparency, then to review and improve processes within the production line and supporting areas, whilst establishing teams with the right processes, parts and tooling to improve pace, capacity and quality.
  • Improve: Embed and enhance the pilot line to become the exemplar line with visible and physical difference to show “what good looks like” and develop the required roles and responsibilities, problem solving culture and introduce further improvement methods and tools.
  • Optimise: Once the line is sustaining the improvements made from phases one and two, the project looked to further optimise Quality, Delivery and Costs performance of the line.


  • For the pilot area, seek to reduce a 9 day takt to a 6 day takt whilst improving clocked (total) build hours from an average 10,100 hours per boat, down to an average of 8600 hours per boat
  • Assessed over 800 activities on one production line, then balanced these tasks to achieve 6 day takt with the required manpower
  • Implement visual management for management team to clearly demonstrate current manpower requirements, visually display the progress of boats against business plan and improve the frequency to monitor clocked build hours against budget
  • Run workshops with the local production team to highlight potential improvements on the line and then categorising these into quick wins and projects
  • Introduce management boards for production and team leaders at process level to monitor safety, performance, manpower and improvement ideas
  • Implement a Problem and Countermeasure process, which includes stakeholder support from other areas of the business such as; Design, HR, Facilities, etc
  • Coach the management team during daily boats reviews, using data to better inform decision making and empower the teams to solve day to day problems

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