Role of the Global Production Center (GPC)
fostering globally capable personnel
Increasing Overseas Production and the Establishment of the GPC
"Made by TOYOTA" is more than a motto - it's an assurance that no matter where they are manufactured, Toyota's vehicles maintain the same high level of quality.
As Toyota's production expanded across the globe, it became critical to ensure consistent personnel training. For this reason, Toyota established "best practices" implemented by all of its affiliates and created the Global Production Center (GPC) within the Motomachi Plant in July 2003.
Activities and Achievements of the GPC
Activity Goals: "Human Resources Development" and "Localization of Model Switchovers"
Toyota's human resources development training program prepares supervisors and trainers at overseas bases, as well as employees, assistants and supervisors from Toyota's headquarters who are going abroad.
Instead of using traditional written manuals, Toyota uses visual manuals, which utilize video and animation to explain specialized knowledge and skills in an easy-to-understand format. These videos also have greatly reduced the length of training time.
Another purpose of the GPC is teaching plant personnel how to prepare for the production of redesigned and different vehicle models. Traditionally, when production switched to a new model, a number of employees from Japan would be dispatched to overseas bases. Now, members from all of the overseas affiliates gather at the GPC to refine the design drawings and confirm feasibility of implementation.
The members' work is assisted by the use of "V-Comm," a 3-D virtual design drawing system. This allows the individual questions and needs of each overseas base to be addressed in advance and reflected in the schematics.
In addition to streamlining the switchover process, this procedure has improved efficiency by reducing the number of support man-hours required by half.
Overseas expansion of the GPC
Due to its tremendous success, new GPC offices were built in 2006 in the United States, the United Kingdom and Thailand. This expansion has further solidified the "Made by TOYOTA" philosophy of manufacturing vehicles across the globe with consistent quality assurance.