Tullis Russell Case Study

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Tullis Russell
Case Study

Operator using a Shadow Board Case Study Footage

We recently had the opportunity to visit Tullis Russell, a paper mill and coating specialist, in order to create a case study about how implementing Visual Management could be applied to organise the workplace. 

See the Case Study here to watch a short video and to learn more.

5 Reasons to use a Custom Whiteboard Overlay

Person applying a whiteboard overlay to a blank whiteboard

5 Reason to use a Custom Whiteboard Overlay

VMT develop, design, and produce bespoke Custom Whiteboard Overlays for a many applications and industries. Printed Whiteboards, a key Visual Management tool, can be used for monitoring and driving performance in many areas of a business such as: Safety, Quality, Cost, Delivery and People.  Printed Whiteboards are also an excellent Visual Management tool to facilitate problem solving activity and manage major projects.

We have a long history of supplying Custom Whiteboard overlays for factories, warehouses, train maintenance depots and more.

We thought it would be useful for us to share some of the key reasons why your business might benefit from applying Custom Whiteboard Overlays.

Add professionalism


Applying a Custom Whiteboard Overlay to a whiteboard that is currently in use to serve a basic operational purpose, will add a layer of professionalism and corporate branding to material assets that are already in place. This helps to elevate a workplace and foster an environment where professionalism and promotion of corporate identity become the norm.

Standardised Approach


Standardisation is one of the foundations of a Lean organisation. Having standards means that’s it’s easy to identify when something is “not ok” or varies from the standard. Applying Printed Whiteboard Overlays to facilitate Visual Management helps to ensure the right data or information is being tracked/recorded/displayed; and that across a site or organisation, the Visual Management approach is the same. This is important as it means people working across departments are as effective in one department as they might be in another, and that management are able to digest and understand the performance in the tiers they are supervising and reporting back from.

Recycle Equipment


Applying a Custom Whiteboard Overlay to a whiteboard that is currently in use removes the need to procure a new board. Visual Management Technology don’t print direct to board we apply a dry wipe laminated Vinyl “skin” to our boards. This means if a client has boards in place on site, but they’d like to use Printed Whiteboards they can utilise boards that they already are in possession of to create Printed Whiteboard Visual Management.

Future Adaptability


As outlined in the (Recycle Equipment) section above, Visual Management Technology don’t print direct to board we apply a dry wipe laminated Vinyl skin to our boards. This means that as projects or business priorities change, the design to be displayed on the Visual Management boards that we supply can also be changed. So, if perhaps a particular Printed Whiteboard is no longer in use because it is no longer operationally required, the skin can be removed, and the Whiteboard can be repurposed somewhere else in the organisation.

High Impact/Low Cost


Applying a Custom Whiteboard Overlay to a whiteboard that is currently in use is a relatively low-cost way of making an impact in your business. With the use of an existing board and just the Overlay to purchase a significant visual and operational impact can be made with a relatively low outlay.

Hopefully, this blog has been useful in outlining why many of the UKs largest manufacturing companies have engaged with Visual Management Technology to supply them with market leading Visual Management Printed Whiteboard Overlay solutions. If you would like to learn more then visit out Whiteboard Overlay page or get in touch.Custo

Case Study – Sertec

Case Study Video

At VMT we believe we have the most comprehensive range of Visual Management solutions available in the UK and we pride ourselves on the strong relationships we build with our clients’. The pillars on which these client relationships are built are the advice, support and flexible approach we provide with our Visual Management solutions.


Over the last 3 years we have been working very closely with multi-site Automotive Tier 1 Supplier Sertec Group to help them on a journey of operational excellence overhaul. Initially, we began by designing and supplying key Visual Management products to one of their stamping sites. These solutions covered key business performance areas such as:

  • Safety (PPE Signage, Safety Archway, Floor Graphics)
  • Basic ‘day-to-day’ operations (Directional Signs, Kanban style instruction, Concern Resolution Visual Management)
  • 5S (Cleaning Station Shadow Boards, 5S Visual Management Boards)
  • Delivery (Project Planning and KPI tracking Visual Management)


Sertec as a business who feel it important to project to visitors, customers, staff and new starters a company that is serious about what they do, value the company history and take pride in their work. VMT supported Sertec by developing, designing and supplying simple visual solutions such as:

  • Timeline wall graphics
  • Outside signage
  • Memorial garden visuals


One particular project that Sertec required more detailed support with developing, was their Dojo training area. This area is used to train new starters into the company the fundamental skills they need to work safely and efficiently on the shop floor. After initial on-site consultation we began by providing a 3-Dimensional plan view visual of the area so the Plant Manager was better able to visualise and plan out the space available to him. From this point we were able to insert into the visual the designs for the Signage and Visual Management that were installed in the area. This allowed the Plant Manager to obtain approval from the stakeholders within the business ahead of installation. New starters to the business are now exposed to Visual Management and best practice workplace visuals from day one, so they are proficient and familiar with these working methods once they are introduced to the shop floor.


Sertec management understand the importance of sharing the results of good Kaizen activity across their business (Yokoten) and as such, we have had contact to help support Visual Management roll-out at their other three sister sites. At VMT we keep a library of the designs we have been supplying to our clients which made it easy for us to show the other Sertec sites the “catalogue” of the more transferrable designs we have developed for the company. The transfer of the Visual Management implemented at the initial site helps with the standardisation of approach that is one of the foundations found in a company embracing operational excellence. It means that someone from one site should be able to operate within the key Visual Management framework and recognise the key visual prompts and instructions when working within one of the other group sites.


Sertec have been so pleased with the relationship we have developed with them that they kindly agreed to allow us to produce our own case study video with them. The results of the video that we planned, filmed and edited ourselves can be seen below.

Safety Arch

Safety Arch Signage

VMT develop, design and produce printed Signage solutions for a many applications and industries. We have a long history of supplying bespoke Safety Signs for factories, warehouses, train depots and more.

Paying consideration to Health and Safety is a basic requirement in any workplace and safety signage helps to:

  • Ensure the workforce is kept safe and protected through clear instruction and PPE provision.
  • Work towards zero harm by raising awareness and driving safety improvement.
  • Comply with Health and Safety law and engage with the workforce.

Safety should always come number one in any organisation

A lot of the safety signage we supply is utilised in locations around our customers facilities to provide visual cues and reminders such as; What PPE should be worn in a specific area or to keep in a certain area to reduce the risk of collisions. We regulalrly supply traditional wall mounted or hanging signage or (as has become more popular post Covid) floor mounted anti-slip signs – and whilst these types of signs are great for imparting very specific messages we have begun to develop and supply a signage solution to allow our clients’ to communicate a “larger” holistic approach to safety; namely our Safety Arches or Archways.

What is Safety Arch?

Visual cues have most impact when they are made hard to ignore. Creating specific safety signage that surrounds the entrance or creates a gateway to a facility/factory/workshop where everybody enters means that all who enter the facility are reminded of the importance of acting safely and abiding by any specific safety requirements (such as PPE). The safety arches we supply come in two main configurations:

  • Fitted around a doorway – fixed to and supported by the wall surrounding the doorway. VMT can supply the necessary fixing to fix to the wall
  • Free standing Archway – this option creates a large visual impact. This free-standing option is bolted to the floor and we can supply the necessary fixings for this option.

Why use a Safety Arch in your facility?

The use of a Safety Arch serves to promote safety awareness in several ways:

  • Safety Communication – Creates a centralised location to post key safety notices relating to the facility that the Arch provides a gateway to.
  • PPE Requirements – Provide an opportunity to visually communicate (and allow to check against) the PPE requirements for staff and visitors alike within the facility.
  • Take away excuses – Walking through a safety arch means that an individual has been exposed to the importance to the organisation of Safe behaviours and abiding by safety standards, therefore any unsafe behaviours observed can be robustly challenged.

The feedback we have had on the Safety Arches we have supplied centre around how much impact they provide in the workplace and how they are visual that communicates to all (Staff, contractors and visitors) how important safety is to the organisation.

If you have an interest and would like know more, then click here.

Practical Problem Solving

Practical Problem Solving

VMT develop, design and produce printed Visual Management whiteboards for a many diverse purposes. One very common purpose for the Visual Management Boards we supply is to facilitate a structured process for problem solving.

In theory Problem Solving should be an easy process of defining what the problem is and taking actions to resolve the problem. However, without the use of a structured problem solving method there’s a lot of potential for non-value added wasteful activity. The use of a Practical Problem Solving Visual Management board ensures a reduction in time wasted on debate using opinions and theories and ensures uniform definitions are applied and a structured series of steps for solving problems.


What is Practical Problem Solving process?


Practical Problem Solving is successful when made up of several key elements.

  • A structured approach to problem solving – performed the same way across an organisation. This structure includes well known standard problem solving tools such as the 5 Why process and Ishikawa (or Fishbone) cause and effect diagram.
  • Having a clear definition of what is and what isn’t a problem – usually something is a problem if it deviates from a set standard or creates a gap between a desired outcome and what is actually happening.
  • Acquiring good data – the problem solving process involves making decisions on courses of actions based on data and information. If the data isn’t good, it’s likely the action won’t be good and the problem will persist.
  • Open minds and reflection – It’s important when undertaking Practical Problem Solving activity that investigation and actions aren’t influenced by what we think is happening, we remain open to all possibilities. Reflection and sharing feedback allows other to learn from the activity which is essential for continuous improvement.


So, now we’ve established what Practical Problem is and what the key elements are, let’s have a look at the benefits of using a Visual Management board to facilitate the Practical Problem Solving process.


Why use a Visual Management board for your Practical Problem Solving Process?


The use of a Visual Management board to facilitate the Practical Problem Solving process has several key benefits:

  • Communication – The board provides a visual snapshot of the status of the process, showing all what the impact of the problem is, what is believed to be the root cause and what is being done to rectify the issue.
  • Gemba/Point of problem – Using a Visual Management board encourages discussion and analysis to take place at the point of the problem, minimising the use of opinions and theories and maximising the use of facts and data.
  • Drive the activity – When used as part of a team activity a Visual Management board encourages the practice of individuals agreeing to take away actions to progress, that are tracked on the board.
  • Educate – A Practical Problem Solving Visual Management board is an excellent tool to coach team members through the structured problem solving process and as a result enhancing the team’s Lean culture.


We have had excellent feedback on our Practical Problem Solving Visual Management boards. Some of the comments we hear focus on how useful it is to have a standard tool for undertaking problem solving and how the boards encourage accountability and proactivity.


If you have an interest and would like to know more please get in touch, or view more visual management boards at https://v-m-t.co.uk/visual-management-boards/

Morning Meetings Visual Management Boards

Morning Meeting Visual Management Boards

VMT develop designs and manufacture printed Visual Management whiteboards for a multitude of purposes. One very common purpose for the Visual Management Boards we supply is to facilitate morning meetings or huddles. Our founders all have in depth experience running and attending these types of meetings from their early days as Engineers and Managers at Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK. They have all gone on to implement this key lean communication principle in diverse industries such as Rail, Food, Pharmaceutical, Motorsport and Manufacturing.

These meetings are frequent, short (typically 10-15 minutes), start of day/shift meetings where key information is briefed, and issues/sticking points are raised among the team.

What happens in a morning meeting?

The typical agenda for a morning meeting might include but not be limited to:

  • A summary or review of current performance – Did we have a good day or bad day? Are we on target or not?
  • Priorities – a briefing of the priority of the work to be completed – ensure the team has direction and know what they are doing.
  • Issues – a chance for everyone to raise concerns and for individuals to agree in front of their peers to take relevant action.
  • General communication – allows a team leader to have an individual conversation with all rather multiple conversations with individuals.

The meetings are usually stand-up meetings which helps to ensure they are short and keep people alert and engaged. There is usually a meeting administrator or leader who guides the agenda and “polices” the meeting to ensure the discussion doesn’t go off topic or become too long winded.

Why use a Visual Management board in a morning meeting?

The use of a Visual Management board in a morning meeting helps to give:

  • Structure – The meeting attendees are aware of what will be talked about and can prepare feedback/issues to raise.
  • A Platform – The Visual Management board provides a physical medium where information can be visually displayed (Statistics/graphs/photographs) to communicate key information or entered manually (handwritten notes or filling in of numbers/tally charts etc.)
  • A Standard Approach – Using a Visual Management board to structure a meeting ensures that meetings are happening the same way across a business and mean that if the meeting administrator is unavailable someone is able to step into their shoes.
  • Empowerment of the team – Not everyone is confident speaking in front of others. A Visual Management board gives individuals a place to park their ideas or concerns without fear of being judged.

We have supplied wide ranging specifications for our Morning Meeting (or Huddle) Visual Management boards. From a simple wall mounted printed board through to a full free standing multi-sided structure with full corporate branding. VMT has the experience and knowledge to advise from the very early design stage through to the technicalities of installation, training and daily usage.

Please get in touch if you’d like to know more or view more products at https://v-m-t.co.uk

Why Visual Management Technology (VMT)?

Production at VMT

Why Visual Management Technology (VMT)?

Visual Management Technology (VMT) now has over a decade of experience providing Visual Management solutions to blue chip clients across diverse industries such as Rail, Aerospace, Nuclear and Food/ Beverage Production. We count some of the most successful organisations operating in the UK amongst our client base. We think it’s important that our client’s whether old or new understand what we’re about and why they should make us their trusted partner for Visual Management in their Lean, Continuous Improvement or Operational Excellence journey.

Lean Pedigree

All our founders spent time working at various levels Engineers or Managers at Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK. We have lived and breathed Visual Management working for one of the pioneers for Lean techniques and we endeavour to share this knowledge and experience with our valued clients.


We have taken the knowledge forged in our experience working as Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK members and implemented Visual Management projects across many sectors. We have the skills and ability to help advise on:
  • How to implement Visual Management to provide control and improvement.
  • Effective design for performance enhancing Visual Management.
  • How to roll out a sustainable 5S strategy for workplace organisation.
  • Products and methods for helping to reduce waste associated with poor control of tools and parts.
We have vast experience in many sectors, which can be repeated but are always on the lookout for the opportunity to utilise best practice in new sectors.

Onsite Presence

As long as VMT has been operating we have always based our business model on ensuring we spend time onsite with our clients. It is here we can see the challenges our clients face and how the Visual Management products and services we supply will fit and support the problem the client is trying to solve or improvement they are trying to make. Many of our clients we have visited multiple times and we pride ourselves in becoming trusted advisors.

Product Range

VMT develops, designs and manufactures (all in house) the widest and most comprehensive range of Visual Management products and services available in the UK or Europe. Our products and services include:
  • Onsite audit, advice and training
  • Visual Management Boards
  • Visual Management Centres / Obeya / War Room
  • Shadow Boards
  • Signage
  • Safety Signage / Safety Archway
  • Cleaning Stations
  • Foam Tool / Part control
Our wide product range along with our advisory service means you need to look no further for a “One stop Shop” for workplace visual and Visual Management support. We hope this summary is useful to our existing and prospective clients in showing what VMT has to offer and why so many organisation have put their trust in us to deliver Visual Management projects. For more information on our product range and services follow the link below. https://www.v-m-t.co.uk

Visual Management & Ardagh Metal Beverage

Visual Management & Ardagh Metal Beverage

Maintaining quality control through Visual Management.

With every client, no matter how large or small, comes a different set of problems to solve. At VMT, we specialise in providing visual management solutions that increase the efficiency and productivity of a business. Harnessing our experience and knowledge, we create practical visual management tools to help any business flourish. In this blog, we will discuss the project brought to us by Ardagh Metal Beverage and how we provided a solution to suit their needs. As a glass and metal packaging provider for some of the world’s biggest brands, there needed to be a strong focus on quality control and productivity at their site in Rugby. Once the project arrived, we knew it was one that we could really do a fantastic job with and there created something that highlighted a clear vision for all of the staff members. So, let’s move on to the exciting stuff.

The challenge posed by Ardagh Metal Beverage

Ardagh Metal Beverage asked us if we were able to provide visual management for the whole site that provided a consistent approach and fed into one unified vision. The solution had to communicate with all team members and visitors of the site that PPE and Health and Safety were paramount to the business, that housekeeping and 5S standards were always met and that quality control was absolutely essential for the company. Ardagh-Bottling

The solutions provided by VMT

Across the Ardagh Metal Beverage site, we provided multiple visual management solutions to enable us to meet their expectations and provide an adequate solution. PPE Requirement Signage In fast-paced and demanding environments, staff safety becomes even more of a priority as the risk increases. VMT provided PPE requirement signage to act as a constant reminder to all of those who were passing through the site, both workers and visitors, of the necessary safety equipment that they should be wearing. We chose to use mirrors within the signage to add extra visual impact. This worked by drawing the individual’s attention to what they were wearing rather than what they were being told to wear. Product quality checking boards Visual Management quality control This solution was made entirely bespoke to the requirements of the client. The quality checking boards utilised a visual cue which highlighted the acceptable standard of product to that which had been produced. For example, green being acceptable and red falling beneath the quality control standards. The type of cue provides a simple and quick method of checking quality control if in doubt. Cleaning Stations  Cleaning stations are one of the more popular visual management devices within a workshop setting. They help ensure that the equipment needed to sustain 5S housekeeping standards is available and at hand. They also encourage workers to replace the cleaning tools after use and create a scenario where no time is wasted looking for the tools needed. The supplied Cleaning Stations were colour coded to differentiate between general cleaning areas and those of high care within the factory. This also helps keep potential contaminants from being spread around the workshop. Ardagh Metal Visual Management

The Visual Management results.

At VMT, we ensured that the look and feel of the Visual Management we implemented were on-brand and remained consistent throughout. By using brand colours, you are able to increase buy-in from staff and increase the credibility of the initiative.

Feedback from the client!

“VMT offered us a flexible approach and service; they supported us in ensuring the products they supplied fulfilled the specification agreed. They were knowledgeable of best practices in visual management and have supplied a product that not only looks the part but performs a vital function.” Want to learn more about how VMT can help you introduce visual management within your business? Follow the link below. https://www.v-m-t.co.uk

VMT Cleaning Stations

VMT Visual Management Centres

How could having a 5S cleaning station improve your efficiency??

At VMT, we have been facilitating visual management solutions to workplace problems for almost ten years. However, our experience goes back way beyond the founding of the business. As sector experts for as long as we can remember, it’s fair to say we’ve seen some brilliant visual management implementation and, of course, some outstanding results. The beauty of using a company like VMT to help with your business’s visual management is that you benefit from our wealth of knowledge and our incredible eye for detail. So, it’s pretty much win/win. At VMT, we pride ourselves on the standard of work that leaves our HQ, and in the past ten years, we have solidified ourselves as the UK’s leading manufacturer of Visual Management solutions. In this blog, we want to talk all about cleaning stations. Of course, there are several reasons why a cleaning station could benefit your business, but we want you to have a look at some of the ways you may have overlooked and gain an understanding as to why they are so popular. So, let’s move on to the good stuff.

What is a cleaning station??

In case you’re coming into this blog with no or little prior knowledge, we thought it would be beneficial to explain more about cleaning stations. Essentially a cleaning station does what it says on the tin. It is a designated area or (station), if you prefer, whereby all of your cleaning equipment is stored. 5S cleaning stations provide the perfect place so that you can ensure all of your cleaning equipment is in the right place at the right time. It’s vital to remember… Simple and well-presented visual information in business is essential to facilitate coordinated and prosperous teams. Man walking past cleaning station

Do cleaning stations come as standard?

We are often asked whether cleaning stations come with a standard fit, and luckily for our customers, the answer is no! We do have several common variations that come complete with tools if you’re looking for something that doesn’t require too much imagination. However, we can also supply stations that suit whatever tools you already use within your workplace. with this sort of product, flexibility is critical, and with VMT, the ball is very much in your court as to what you would like to include in your station.

What about the room?

If you feel like your workspace doesn’t have the room for a cleaning station, we would ask that you think again. Not only are cleaning stations effective visual management tools, but they also show that you care about the health and safety of your environment, employees, guests etc. If you’re struggling with space, we have two options for you. Wallmounted cleaning stations are perfect to have located near heavy traffic or high chance of spillage areas. Wallmounted cleaning stations ensure everybody knows where the cleaning equipment is located when needed. Mobile and Freestanding cleaning stations are ideal if wall space is at a premium. As they can be moved, it’s also perfect to place them close to an area where tools will be needed urgently. Our frames ensure the right tool, at the right time, at the right place. food and drink cleaning station

Why use a cleaning station?

    • Reduce time searching for cleaning tools. 
    • Differentiate between production areas.
    • Increase the life of cleaning tools. 
    • Add professionalism to your workplace. 

Cleaning Stations and us.

At VMT, we specialise in providing solutions to make your day-to-day life smoother and more efficient. If anything you have read in this blog is of interest, or if you want to reach out to us and find out more about visual management, follow the link below. We cant wait to hear from you. https://www.v-m-t.co.uk

VMT Visual Management Centres

Visual management centre

VMT Visual Management Centres

How could a VMT visual management centre help your business?

You may have heard of visual management centres called several different names, Obeya and War Rooms being two of the most popular. Whatever name you choose to give them, they are undoubtedly a massive part of a successful visual management implementation process for a business. If you already have one in your place of work, then you’re ahead of the curve and making all the right moves to improve your efficiency. However, if you don’t, there’s still plenty of time to step up your game and start working out how to implement one today. In this blog, we want to highlight the benefits of visual management centres and teach you how the team at VMT can help your business. So, with that being said, let’s move on to the good stuff.

What is a visual management centre (Obeya, war room)?

A visual management centre gives your business dedicated meeting space for the purpose of tracking the overall performance of the company and its staff. They help increase problem-solving activity and provide a focus for all team activity. The centres block off all of the day-to-day distractions of a working environment and allow team meetings or briefings to focus on facts and figures. If you’re a manager or leader within your business, it’s essential to remember that…Standing up and presenting performance data and improvements in front of peers drives Lean behaviours.

Why Choose VMT?

At VMT, we utilise our years of experience when developing a sophisticated solution for your business. We focus our knowledge of Visual Management Centres on creating a functional and well-branded answer to your efficiency problems. Our process is clean and straightforward, and we take your initial idea through every stage of design and development until we reach the final delivery and assembly, which, of course, we can take care of too.

Integrating a management centre within your workspace.

Each Visual Management Centre that we design and build is constructed using durable aluminium machine-building extrusion. Thie material allows us to create something aesthetically pleasing as well as having the strength to support and integrate shadow boards holding tools etc. We can also include cleaning stations and safety signage, as well as technology such as large screen TVs and computer workstations.

Why should you use a visual management centre from VMT!

  • Removes the need for wall space and creates a room where you have space available for multiple team members.
  • Eliminates all external distracting factors when focusing on the facts and figures involved in performance.
  • A centre can help you project output, drive improvement and control the performance of the business and individuals.
  • VMT visual management centres are easy to extend and add new sections if your business requires them.
  • You receive a professional service from start to finish and benefit from our years of experience, knowledge and innovation.

Visual Management Centres and us.

At VMT, we love introducing Visual Management Centres into our client’s workplaces. Our exposure to and experience with the benefits of having a centre help us guide every customer on what will work best for their business. If you think a Visual Management Centre could benefit your business, get in touch with us today by following the link below. https://www.v-m-t.co.uk