The smoother your production line runs and the more efficiently it operates, the more money you stand to make. Increasing productivity in such a rigid system can be tough, but it’s not impossible. It’s all about looking for opportunities for improvement and for eliminating the interruptions and sources of loss along the way.
Here are a few ideas that might help you bring productivity to your production line.
Make Sure the Machines Are in Good Condition
One of the greatest sources of loss of them all. Poorly maintained machines are a lot more likely to cause mistakes, leading to products that need to be thrown out. In the worst-case scenarios, you might even find that they fail completely. Ensuring scheduled maintenance of your machines is key.
Be Ready and Able to Find Replacement Parts
Every part of every machine on your production line is going to suffer from wear and tear. Eventually, that’s going to lead to major problems. One of the crucial parts of being able to get back up and running is to be able to find your replacement parts without concern. Find suppliers for your production line machinery and know which parts of each machine are likely to go first to get the backup supply you need to stay up and running.
Sharpen the Process
We’ve looked at ways to make existing processes more efficient, but what if the processes themselves are part of the problem? Don’t assume that you’re currently carrying out production in the most efficient way possible. Application technology service providers can look at the processes you’re currently running, and apply expertise to see if they can be made any more efficient or reliable. Outsource the process development step to those who can help you really sharpen how your production line works.
Create a Strong Supply Base
Again, take a good look at your suppliers when looking at your production line. Consider which you rely on most, and which are providing you with better parts and tools. If you have some suppliers that outshine the rest, then consider whether or not you can give them more of your business and rely on them for services that you were previously using another supplier for. Finding good suppliers is essential to any manufacturing set-up.
Energize and Train Your Team
Human error is going to play a part in many sources of loss on the floor. Automation might be one of the most reliable ways to reduce it, but you don’t need to go that far or invest that much. Systemizing a thorough training routine for your employees can help get better used to the machines and work processes they spend their day with. You should be sure to look at means of motivating them, such as opening the lines of communication to get their feedback, offering perks, and so on.
You have to always stay on the ball, be on the lookout for loss, and always be finding ways to improve processes to keep your production line sharp. It’s an ongoing process, not a short-term solution. Keep that in mind.