Ways to Make Your Production Line More Efficient
Manufacturing in the modern era requires the constant juggling of many moving parts. You must obtain a steady supply of source materials, maintain quality control, and ensure labour demands are met, all while delivering the finished product on time. A snag in any one of these processes can considerably slow down production.
Here are some steps to consider that will help your production line be more efficient by preventing problems from occurring that can reduce productivity.
- Quality Control Improvements:
As industries in North America increasingly move more towards automating aspects of their production line, co-ordinate measuring machines (CMMs) are becoming an essential tool in performing quality control. A CMM has a probe that measures the physical geometrical characteristics of a part or product, either manually by a human operator or by a computer.
CMM machines can tell if there is a flaw or defect in a part on the production line faster and with more accuracy and precision than a human can. To learn more about CMM machines Canadian Measurement Metrology has your information ready, and they’re the country’s leading supplier.
- Maintain and Repair Your Equipment Properly
Machines inevitably break down if they aren’t taken care of properly. Keep them in good working order by insisting on a schedule of regular maintenance, and repair malfunctioning machines immediately. Diligent maintenance is an upfront investment in time that pays off because it prevents the breakdown of machines, which can significantly reduce efficiency, from ever occurring.
- Training Employees
Your front-line workers will always play a vital role in the effectiveness of your production line. They need to be trained properly, because you’re relying on them to problem solve. Depending on the nature of your product, it may be worthwhile to invest in “cross-training,” which means teaching your workers to perform a range of tasks on the assembly line.
This will give you more flexibility, as you can insert them at different machines to stomp out inefficiencies before they happen in the first place.
- Know Your Product
If you have detailed knowledge about what you’re making and how you’re making it, you will potentially be able to think of ways to save money in different aspects of your production line. What raw materials do you need? What process do these materials undergo? How much energy is expended in this process? Knowledge gives you power.
- Measure Productivity
Hard data is the only way to know whether or not your employees are working efficiently. Calculating this involves dividing a worker’s actual output by the standard output rate and multiplying by 100 percent. Find out the average time it takes to perform a certain task, then make this a future target.
In manufacturing, upfront costs and overhead expenses are really high, so an efficient production line is necessary to maximize profits. The sunk costs have been spent, and you need to squeeze what you can from what investments you’ve already made. If you buy the right automation equipment, take proper care of your machines, train your employees sufficiently, and know both your product and your employees, your entire production line should be more efficient soon.