ROSEMONT, IL—Kenworth Truck Co.'s Renton, WA, facility has been named ASSEMBLY magazine's Assembly Plant of the Year. Accepting the award at a ceremony held Sept. 28 during the 2004 Assembly Technology Expo in Chicago were Kenworth plant manager Doug Baugh and director of manufacturing development Joe Zitzelberger.

The Assembly Plant of the Year award, of which Kenworth is the first recipient, has been initiated to showcase world-class assembly facilities. All manufacturers that assemble products in the United States are eligible and invited to nominate their plants. As part of the award process, the Renton plant will be featured in ASSEMBLY's Nov. 2004 issue.

The goal of the award is to identify a state-of-the-art facility that has applied world-class processes to reduce production cost, increase productivity, shorten time to market and improve product quality. An official nomination form was printed in several issues of ASSEMBLY. In addition, an online version appeared on the magazine's Web site. Nominations were received from a diverse group of manufacturers that reflect the magazine's demographics. All nominees were evaluated by a group of outside experts and by ASSEMBLY's editorial staff, based on the following set of criteria:

  • Have assembly processes been improved through the use of new technology?
  • Has the plant improved its performance by making more effective use of existing technology?
  • Has the plant taken steps to reduce production costs?
  • Have new or improved assembly processes resulted in increased productivity?
  • Has the plant used assembly improvements to reduce time to market?
  • Has the plant boosted bottom-line profits and competitive advantage?
  • Did operators play a role in the successful implementation of new assembly strategies?
  • Has a product been effectively designed for efficient assembly?
  • Has the plant attempted to protect the environment and conserve natural resources?

Nomination forms for next year's Assembly Plant of the Year award will appear in the January 2005 issue of ASSEMBLY.