Experts from the UK and other European nations are on a mission to introduce green and lean initiatives in Indian small and medium-sized enterprises.
As part of a Rs 5.5 crore project funded by Kolkata’s Jadavpur University and UK’s Aston University, international experts in operations management are sharing best practices in the supply and value chain.
“The idea is to improve small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) performance by implementing a green supply chain management model which is based on sustainablity. This will reduce wastes and costs, improve performance with minimal or no damage to the environment.
“We are not imparting some ground-breaking technology but just sharing ideas on how to do it,” Professor Prasanta K Dey of Aston Business School in Birmingham told PTI here.
He said their efforts are aimed at elimination of wastes, reducing cycle time, re-engineering the manufacturing process, improving supply chain effectiveness, enhancing competence of process and manpower by training, energy saving, incorporating reverse logistics systems, reducing resource consumption and enhancing green productivity.
It is estimated that there are around 3.6 crore micro, small, and medium scale enterprises in India.
As a pilot project, they have included ten SME units in the state initially with whom they will work for a period of 18 months.
An ambitious target of a 20 per cent improvement in their performance has been set up.
“We will also guide them in inventory management and demand forecasting. Information and communication technology can also be a big enabler in this. Recycling and reduction of waste is another important focus area,” Dey said.
Prior to the ongoing project, they did a research comparing the environmental performance of SMEs in India and UK and found that Indian SMEs have more environmental targets but fewer methods in place for monitoring performance.
“So we can learn from each others experiences on how to encourage SMEs to adopt environmental and quality management systems,” he said.
The project is also supported by the Indo German Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Small Medium Industries.