Stepping into the UTC Carrier plant was a little disorienting. Once inside the front door you see a very modernly designed lobby with a friendly receptionist , a small “museum” displaying generations of Carrier products and a gift shop selling Carrier shirts, caps and merchandise. Then you are directed to a large open room with tables and chairs and a nice array of refreshments. After your introductory slideshow you are moved from the room and directed to put on protective glasses, Kevlar harm sleeves and headphones connected to a receiver, like you were going on an industrial museum tour. Once the shop floor doors open you walk into a completely different world. For many of the members of our group it is their first time on a shop floor, so it is an impressive sight. Our tour guide, David Walsh, directs us to follow him. Make sure to stay on the green walkways.
The Indianapolis plant produces thousands of Gas Furnaces and Fan Coils every day, mostly for residential buildings. It is an remarkable process; from the shelves of delivered inventory from suppliers, to the 1 million pound Minster press that will haunt my dreams, to the robotic and manned assembly lines, to packaging and shipping, and even to the vending machines full of protective gloves and armguards. Every worker is friendly and helpful. David Walsh takes the time to explain the intricacies of each process and part; even detailing the physics of what each part does in the furnace or fan coil. It takes me back to my engineering days. Despite the constant construction on the shop floor from the addition and removal of equipment and product lines, the plant runs smoothly.
After we leave the floor, everything seems so quiet again. We have a chance to direct questions to a panel of UTC employees, which gives many of the 1st years a nice look into future Operations courses. As everyone on the trip would agree, getting the opportunity to walk through a top of the line manufacturing facility was informative and eye opening. For me, I couldn’t think of a better way to spend my Thursday afternoon.
MBA – Class of 2014