A thorough audit of work order processes, storage and production facilities and supply chains should also be the starting point as it helps organisations understand exactly what is going on at a production plant. Questionnaire surveys are often used to engage and encourage employees to contribute to business process improvement initiatives, and will typically provide answer the following questions.
Are Changes Necessary to Production Plant?
Factory layout and indoor environmental conditions, including lighting, can play a significant part in improving productivity and supporting employee wellbeing.
Does Internal Plant Organisation Support Manufacturing?
Ask your employees whether internal logistics, batch management and tooling are in need of improvement.
Is Production Efficient?
Automation or partial automation of manual procedures can often be achieved by consulting employees about new work processes.
Look At Your Materials
Another great way to improve your manufacturing business is to evaluate the materials you use.
Review Packaging and Storage
Internal logistics and warehousing are often a bottleneck for manufacturing processes, and the use of forklift trucks, pallets, and even storage containers needs to be evaluated. Recycling and re-using packaging also helps companies improve their environmental footprint, and can often require innovative thinking. Examples might include replacing cardboard boxes with bails or palletised storage, in conjunction with bailing wire (examples are available at www.balingwiredirect.com).
Companies can often use waste materials from other manufacturers in their production processes or sell waste materials.
Sensors networks in factories now mean manufacturers can benefit from automation which improves planning and reduces error from miscommunication between staff.
Improving efficiency therefore means considering changes across the board, and will often result in leaner, more efficient, and more sustainable processes.