Five Tips to Make Shop Floor Management More Efficient

Thanks to the internet and global competition, it’s no longer enough for manufacturers to build a better mouse trap.

To succeed, manufacturers must also leverage effective management techniques to develop lean, flexible production operations.

Fortunately, many highly effective management practices aren’t complicated. They are simply ways to avoid making common mistakes and avoid unnecessary inefficiency and waste.

Here are a few approaches to making your production floor more efficient.

Track the true costs of doing business

Identifying and tracking the cost of making one widget is easy. It’s much harder to track the underlying costs your business is incurring, and if those costs are necessary. These costs might include all labor costs (like benefits and taxes), costs associated with running production machines, administrative overhead, marketing costs and costs associated with outside services, such as janitorial and security staff.

By tracking all costs, management can identify inefficiencies and even apply cost-saving automation where possible.

Acknowledge your customers

When business is humming along, a company might find itself becoming complacent toward its customer base. Then, if the economy takes a downturn, the company’s relationships with its customers becomes extremely important.

Therefore, it’s important for a business to be proactive in interacting with its customers. This includes identifying any areas of dissatisfaction and any opportunities to offer new services or products.

Value your employees

Good employees are always hard to find, and in this labor market, it’s even harder.

Therefore, it’s crucial to acknowledge and value to your employees. Making employees feel appreciated minimizes turnover, keeping labor costs down.

You can also value your employees by developing their skill sets. If you train your current staff members, they will not only feel valued, they will add more value to your organization.

Part of making employees feel valued includes holding regular performance reviews. These should be two-way conversations where both the manager and the employee walk away with a more informed way to achieve common goals.

Recognize quality is now an expectation

Persistently producing quality products won’t set a business apart anymore, as the consumer now expects all products that come to market to be quality goods.

Therefore, manufacturers must standardize their quality control operation as they would their production operations. Doing this will mean getting quality certifications like ISO9001.

Use a single business software solution

With the accessibility and affordability of today’s integrated shop floor management systems, there’s no excuse for any manufacturer, regardless of size, not to use one.

These systems unify backend accounting systems with those on the production floor. Without the integration of these systems, managers cannot make important decisions quickly. An ad hoc, disjointed system also becomes a bigger problem as a business grows, technology advances or systems become outdated.

At LTI Services, we support the management and systems at our client companies through custom staffing solutions and managed services. Reach out to us today to find high-quality talent that will add value to every manufacturing floor.