Manufacturing companies have a lot of pressure – they need to reduce costs, improve profitability, enhance throughput, and cut down wastage, among other things. Fortunately, improving manufacturing efficiency can help with many, if not all the goals of any manufacturing firm. Focusing on efficiency helps reduce costs, improve productivity, and increase profits without raising prices or adversely affecting the product quality – creating a win-win situation for both organizations and their customers.
While improving manufacturing efficiency can be tricky, it’s not impossible, and the results can be game-changing. That being said, let’s take a look at some useful tips that can improve efficiency at manufacturing facilities.
Improving manufacturing efficiency with 4 tips
Organize and optimize processes
Inefficiencies within manufacturing plants can arise from virtually anything. For instance, a tool shared by a number of people to do the same work can cause a slowdown in production, a machine that keeps malfunctioning can hamper production, or workers using different approaches for the same task – all of these cause inefficiencies.
Organizing and optimizing the entire manufacturing plant can help remove these inefficiencies, by closely scrutinizing the current processes. For instance, do a test and see if buying more tools can speed up the process, standardize repeatable tasks, and ensure preventive maintenance for the crucial equipment so that they don’t break down easily.
Adopt new technology that boosts manufacturing efficiency
Unfortunately, even today, some organizations are still not open to technological advancements. Be it the equipment, processes, or applications, using ancient ones is detrimental for the entire organization. For instance, imagine if a manufacturing firm is using binders or excel sheets for equipment maintenance management – collaboration, organizing, and retrieving the information would be a nightmare for the maintenance management team! Obsolete pieces of equipment can take more time than their newer counterparts, and as they say, time is money. The consequences of such inefficiencies can cause customers to switch and employees to quit.
While investing in new technology might be costly at first, the advantages far outweigh the costs. For instance, a new piece of equipment is able to produce 3 more units than the last model using fewer resources, saving quite a bit of cost in the process. On the other hand, using a robust, cloud-based, and customizable CMMS app like CloudApper CMMS can improve collaboration, streamline maintenance management, and make it truly mobile (it can be used from smartphones as well).
Don’t set unrealistic expectations
While an organization might be thinking that there’s room for improvement, with the current resources and practices, it might not be possible to achieve that. Moreover, many organizations can be overenthusiastic after buying new equipment, making significant changes, or deploying new resources – leading to overestimating current capabilities. Setting unrealistic expectations not only hampers efficiency but also makes organizations and employees chase unfeasible goals that might be unhealthy down the line.
Rather than doing that, setting realistic goals by checking the equipment’s capacity, production throughput, and other metrics can help improve efficiency. For instance, setting goals after a thorough and meaningful analysis of the changes can keep expectations grounded in reality – this helps employees as well as they have meaningful goals to accomplish.
Train both old and new employees
Well, employees such as machine operators are the ones who handle the machinery, and their degree of knowledge about the equipment can significantly impact efficiency itself. While most manufacturing firms provide training to new employees, efficiency can be further improved if organizations provide training to their experienced workers as well.
It’s the age of technology, and new practices, updates, and processes come out that can significantly improve efficiency and productivity. Taking advantage of these new updates and disseminating the information among all the machine operators can give the organization an edge over the competitors by improving efficiency, reducing wastage, and achieving results faster.
Organizations have been working on achieving the optimum efficiency for years now, but as previously mentioned, many might end up setting unrealistic expectations, using obsolete equipment or tools, and not updating their employees properly on how to handle the equipment. While organizations might just update one part of the manufacturing process, it might not be enough to achieve significant improvements in efficiency. For instance, using a modern and robust preventive maintenance management app like CloudApper CMMS can reduce machine downtime, streamline maintenance tasks, and improve collaboration – enhancing manufacturing efficiency in the process. Using updated solutions and implementing modern practices can really help make a difference in manufacturing facilities.