Value creation, and more specifically the creation of value for our customers, is the main driving force of our organisation. An integral part of value creation is innovation.
Delivering solutions to our customers is key: this attitude creates a dynamic in our organisation that aims at innovation and progress. We involve our customers, the commercial organisation and ArcelorMittal research centres in the development of new steel grades, and we work closely together with polytechnics and universities. The quality management department is responsible for day-to-day quality monitoring and for this job it has high-tech measurement and research equipment in order to check whether our products meet customer specifications. Indeed, good product quality at an acceptable cost price and short delivery periods are the main criteria by which we distinguish ourselves from the competition. We achieve outstanding results by constantly monitoring the quality of its processes.
In order to improve customer service, ArcelorMittal Gent has been aiming since January 2007 at even more ambitious targets for the in-time delivery of fully completed orders. In the past, our company focused on the time when an order was fully completed and ready for shipment, but now it focuses on the time when an order is actually shipped. In this philosophy the customer occupies centre stage even more distinctly.
At ArcelorMittal Gent, value creation is stimulated by the striving for industrial excellence: this means the most efficient way to produce flat steel strip. In this context the TPM methodology is very important because it mobilises people and encourages a greater degree of involvement. For ArcelorMittal Gent and the flat carbon steel sector of ArcelorMittal to which we belong, TPM (“Total Productive Maintenance”) is a strategic choice.
Production costs are for us a signpost on the path to industrial excellence. In order to reduce costs, we have launched the Formula 1 plan, which stands for “Formula to accelerate TPM pillar 1, combating losses”. This plan aims to eliminate cost-increasing losses and to save 175 million euros per year by 2010 in relation to the reference year 2006.
In the future, we want to continue along this path in order to further expand the value creation for our customers and our company.