A Kaizen Example – Applying Lean at the Cinema


Kaizen example - How to implement Kaizen
Have you ever thought of an industries or organizations in which kaizen might work as it does in the manufacturing environment? Today we are going to have a few words about a kaizen example from the cinema.

A Kaizen Example from the Cinema

Some of you might not think of, but cinemas face pretty much the same issues as other industries do. The material they have to handle is the audience whereas the product, or better to say the service, of course is the entertainment including the movie itself (the HD video, the screen and sound experience), all the snacks it comes along with, as well as the environment, the seats and the public space it offers to the audience and their friends, boy and girlfriends, dates and families.

So the focus of this kaizen example was to increase sales of one of the biggest cinema chains in Europe. And the way to get there was open for me and my team to be defined. So what did we do? Let me show you in this kaizen example how we increase sales by almost 25 %.

A Kaizen Example – How to increase Sales at the Cinema by 25 %

The workshop took place within two days time. Though time was short it was by far enough to think about one particular lean tool from the lean toolbox which brought us significant improvements: The change-over reduction. By the way: As always, if you do not have the toolbox yet, download it for free and use it wherever you want to.

The aim was to offer the show to as many consumers as possible. With an average movie duration of 130 min and a change-over time of 72 min (36 %) the cinema halls were filled four times a day each with an average of about 450 seats. That means, with a number of 16 halls in total in that particular cinema, you would reach up to 16 x 450 (7,200) consumers more by increasing the number from four to five movies per day. With a ticket price of about 12 EUR that would result in an increase of revenue of 72,000 EUR a day, resulting at the end in more than 17 million EUR additional revenue per year.

So the target was set.

The Kaizen Workshop

The kaizen workshop itself was pretty much unspectacular. The biggest benefit we had was by shifting the selling of ice-cream to outside the show. That was linked to contracts with an ice-cream supplier who advertises during the introduction. The show then stops before the movie trailers start to let ice-cream sellers run along the rows. The profit by advertising and selling the ice-cream during the show was out of proportion to the possibility of increasing to five shows per day.

Kaizen Example: The ability of performing Kaizen Workshops at Cinemas

By saving in total 56 min of time per hall per day, the cinema is now able to present 16 additional shows for an audience of up to 7,200 people.

Further improvements were done by informing the cleaning team on time to be prepared when the movie finished and training the stuff of cleaning in four groups instead of a more uncoordinated approach. Stuff will be trained to work at the counter as well as to prepare the cinema halls between the movies. The work force then can be reduced in long-term.

The following Lean Tools from the Lean Toolbox we used at the end:

  • SMED / Change-over reduction
  • Standardization
  • Kaizen
  • Visual Management
  • Andon
  • Multiple-Process-Operations

Whenever you would like to know more about Kaizen Examples from other industries let us know in the comments below.

A Kaizen Example – Further readings:

(1) Access similar challenges like Lean at the Cinema at: http://www.ennomotive.com/
(2) http://cinematreasures.org/blog/2006/9/25/how-to-increase-revenue-question


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