Reducing Lead Times for High-Mix and Custom Product Supply Chains

Upcoming dates (1)

Oct. 24, 2024

Madison, WI


This course will present how to use manufacturing critical-path time (MCT) to evaluate supply chain performance and utilize the principles of quick response manufacturing to reduce long lead times in your supply chain.  The course will include presentation, group discussions, and hands-on exercises.


Overview of Quick Response Manufacturing

  • Understanding the power of time and the response time spiral
  • Applying QRM to office operations

Using MCT as a performance metric

  • How to measure MCT and apply it to your supply chain

Supplier metrics

  • Comparing MCT to traditional metrics of cost, quality, and on-time delivery

Efficiency vs. speed for truck loading & shipping

  • Moving from a cost-based to a time-based perspective when making logistics decisions

System dynamics principles

  • Importance of spare capacity and small batch flow
  • Demonstration of trade-offs

Make vs. buy decisions

  • True cost of sourcing
  • Dual sourcing
  • Choosing a second source based on MCT and responsiveness

Techniques fro increased responsiveness, flexibility, and predictability

  • Using time slicing for a shared or subcontracted process
  • Product enrichment
  • Delayed differentiation
  • Multi-tiered concurrent planning


Jenny Patzlaff

Jenny is an experienced cross-functional team leader and 20+ year supply chain veteran. She has a passion for data transparency, solving supply chain problems, and promoting a team culture of collaboration and continuous learning. Jenny spent seventeen years at Target Corporation in various supply chain roles including Inventory Management, International and Domestic Logistics, Global Trade Compliance, Data Product Management, and Supply Chain Program Management. She then moved back to Wisconsin as Director of Strategic Initiatives for RateLinx, a logistics software development company where she helped customers reduce freight costs and improve Ship, Track and Pay data visibility. Jenny graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is also a Licensed Customs Broker.

Charlene Yauch

Charlene A. Yauch, Ph.D., P.E., has been an engineering educator for over 20 years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) and Oklahoma State University. Her notable honors include five teaching awards and a National Science Foundation Career grant. She has taught a wide variety of classes, including Manufacturing Systems Design & Analysis, Materials & Manufacturing Processes, Computer Numerical Control Machining, Automation Technologies, and Engineering Economy.

Her professional interests relate to the implementation of manufacturing system improvements, such as Quick Response, Lean, and Agile Manufacturing, with emphasis on the human, social, and organizational aspects. Prior to her doctoral degree, she worked in industry for six years, performing a wide variety of tasks for manufacturing firms, including simulation modeling, facility layout, and process improvement. She has also advised numerous student projects related to manufacturing system improvement.  Dr. Yauch has a multi-disciplinary educational background with a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Purdue University, and graduate degrees in sociology (M.S.), manufacturing systems engineering (M.S.), and industrial engineering (Ph.D.) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Upcoming dates (1)

Program Director

James Rink