How To Get More from Your Manufacturing Operations
Reaching production goals in a manufacturing business can seem like a continuous losing battle. Problems with scheduling, tools, equipment, vendors and labor can all work to slow down or completely derail projects. When factors such as these begin to culminate, enervated shop processes usually start showing signs of strain, or even crumbling.
Astute business owners and plant managers find ways to meet the challenges they face by watching for opportunities to increase efficiency at every level of the organization. The following strategies for improving the yield of your operation will help you take action as you transition your company from less wastefulness to more productivity.
Perform a SWOT Analysis
Whether you choose to hire a consultant or do the work yourself, every manufacturing business should consider performing an assessment of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats (SWOT). The SWOT tool can reveal areas where companies might realize immediate performance improvement without much capital outlay.
Interactively and communally examining the company also helps to ingrain the mission of the company in each employee. SWOT serves the good of the organization by letting everyone know the “why” behind the tasks management asks them to do on a daily basis. Additionally, executives who may rarely travel to the shop floor also get a glimpse of the types of problems supervisors and workers must overcome to meet the objectives they have set for them.
Update Your Technology
Antiquated paper-based systems of scheduling, ordering and maintenance have no place on a modern production line. Humans cannot keep up with the expanding array of variables that determine whether the plant will run at peak levels. Computerized Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) can track individual steps of the manufacturing process and make adjustments in real-time to ensure maximum productivity.
The new era of automated processes brought on by rapid advances in technology will continue to play an increasing role in manufacturing. Manufacturers searching for ways to reduce costly errors on the line and get products to market faster are looking to digital solutions – an already proven way to accomplish these goals.
Invest in Education
The systems you put into place will function only as well as the people who run them. Many successful companies achieve employee buy-in through providing effective education programs for their workers. This strategy is especially useful when advancing technology forces machine operators to master new skills quickly to do their jobs effectively.
Understanding and implementing the newer technology can help you optimize your plant's operation, but it can be challenging to navigate your way through the maze of information and find the best solution for your organization. Let Intraratio help.