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AFRICAN OPEN CUT IRON ORE MINE

Fast Startup - 85% of design capacity year 1
Design capacity exceeded by 30% year 2

The Challenge

The mine faced considerable hurdles from the outset. A primary challenge was the deployment of a local workforce, inexperienced in mining operations, which was essential for community integration. The ambitious target was to hit a full production rate of 9 million tons annually by 2013. Initially, the operation struggled, with output stagnating at 600,000 tons monthly—falling short of the 750,000 ton target due to inefficiencies and suboptimal blast sequencing caused by urgent delivery pressures.

LOCATION

Africa

MINE TYPE

Open Cut Iron Ore

SALES INCREASE 

+$244 million p.a. by year two 

The Stratflow Productivity Platform

Intervention Strategy:

To address these challenges, Stratflow introduced its groundbreaking Productivity Platform. This solution, comparable to the precision of keyhole surgery in its minimal disruption, optimized the mine’s overall productivity through enhanced operational flow and strategic decision-making. By June 2012, a pivotal shift occurred with the integration of the Productivity Platform, complete with a Flow Room, where staff were trained in the Theory of Constraints tailored specifically for mining.

Compelling outcomes:

This strategic intervention led to a rapid increase in production volumes—from 400,000 tons to 1 million tons monthly by year-end, culminating in an annual output of 8.5 million tons in 2012 alone. By 2013, the mine exceeded expectations with a production of 10.8 million tons, almost 30% above its designed capacity. This surge in output translated into an additional $244 million in revenue, significantly boosting profitability.

Industry wide impact:

The mine’s success story became a center of learning for the mining sector, drawing peers and consultants eager to understand and replicate its achievements. The adoption of the Stratflow platform marked a transformative phase in mining operations, promoting a culture of 'Superflow in a spirit of calmness' characterized by seamless, efficient, and predictable operations.

 

Enhanced Employee Engagement and Operational Maturity:

The new operational approach markedly increased employee engagement and the quality of decision-making. The Flow Room, designed to host 50 employees, often saw up to 70 participants, underscoring its effectiveness and appeal. This empowered workforce demonstrated increased maturity and agility in managing operations, further cementing the mine’s status as a leader in innovative mining practices.

Conclusion

The strategic shift facilitated by the Stratflow Productivity Platform has set a new industry standard. It demonstrates that focusing on systemic throughput rather than isolated efficiency can lead to substantial gains in both productivity and operational harmony. This case serves as a benchmark for similar operations facing throughput challenges, proving that thoughtful interventions can yield significant and sustainable benefits.
Contact Stratflow to discuss how we can help solve your challenges and improve your bottom-line results.
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