Manufacturing downtime is one of the most daunting concerns for industrial business owners. Even a small disruption can be a nuisance as it may lead to a big waste of time and resources. A major event can hit your profits and hurt your reputation, as you may miss out on product quality and delivery deadlines. The good thing is that manufacturers are not powerless to prevent such incidents. A few simple measures are enough to cut the downtime risks and keep your operations on track. Here are some surefire tips to stay ahead of manufacturing downtime.
Set realistic production goals
Setting realistic production goals is the key to manufacturing success. It also helps you prevent downtime in your daily process. Ideally, your production goals should include parameters like total output and lead time. Think beyond the annual targets, and break them into daily, weekly, and monthly numerical goals. A target to double your total output or reduce lead time by 20 percent enables you to check the lags leading to wasted time, motion, or energy. It minimizes downtimes by engaging the team with the production line.
A well-trained team can handle equipment failures, which can drastically reduce downtime when it occurs. They need not wait for a technician to fix the production line and get it back to an up-and-running state. Trained in-house resources can troubleshoot and repair without outside help. The best part about having them on board is that they can recommend changes to improve movement and prevent wastage on the line.
Track and analyze data
Data is perhaps the most critical asset for manufacturers as it enables them to track downtime, analyze the root causes, and address them to prevent future events. You can adopt a tool data management application to allocate the right tools for machines. The approach increases the productive working time and prevents downtime to boost production in the long run. Also, meet with your operators with regular reviews of production data.
Automate whatever possible
Automating repeatable, monotonous, and time-consuming tasks in your manufacturing facility is an excellent way to prevent downtime. Likewise, you can automate high-risk tasks to keep workplace accidents at bay. For example, automating the welding process for auto parts with robotics can lower the lead time and enhance product quality. Also, it improves workforce productivity as they focus on tasks that require their attention.
Keep a maintenance schedule
Another surefire tip to minimize downtime for your manufacturing plant is to stick to a maintenance schedule. The good thing about maintaining your equipment regularly is that it prevents glitches and failure. Moreover, it increases the lifespan of tools and machines, so you need not worry about replacing them sooner than later. Maintain equipment manuals and ensure regularity in maintenance schedules. Also, encourage employees to report the smallest incident so that you can address it at the earliest.
Minimizing downtime is easier than you imagine because knowledge and attention to detail can prevent most events. You can rely on these tips to keep your manufacturing operations up and running.