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Showing posts from October, 2012

Takt Time: Using Demand Calculations to Help Shape Your Lean Manufacturing Improvement Projects

Sometimes our business improvement projects feel like we’re not making enough of a change, but what if there was a simple method to determine just how much of a change we needed to make in order to make our processes competitive?  By using some basic facts and figures we can determine exactly how much of a shift we need to make to our processes, and ultimately guide our thinking to create the right degree of change.  This booklet, written by an experienced business consultant, gives you a step by step guide on how to determine the key inputs to your business process improvement design. By using takt time as the basis for the direction you will identify the right amount of change required for your business. Click here to view on Smartspeed Consulting Limited Taking the frustration out of on time delivery.

Beware of the Decay of Standards

Over time standards often drop. This can affect all manner of things within your business, from customer service, to quality records, and more. There is an interesting insight to this called 'broken window theory' ( Wilson and Kelling ), where windows were seen to be broken on derelict buildings, and as it was seen as OK (i.e. no one was prosecuted) then everyone else joined in. Eventually all of the windows were smashed out, by people who normally wouldn't get involved. How does this manifest in your business? Do people see others who don't tow the line and complete the necessary actions / disciplines without corrective actions being taken? Do they then follow suit? A good example of this going wrong in a manufacturing business is with data entries into an MRPII system (or the routines around the system). A failure to provide the right information, or inputs, can create all kinds of chaos. I see many businesses where the users put up with the chaos and cre

Stalling the implementation?

Projects often take longer than expected, but sometimes it is us who are creating the delays. Stalling the implementation however might not always be in the interest of everyone who is involved. Sure there will be teething problems, but this is natural and can bring a whole raft of benefits when encountered. During the infancy of a project / new way of working there will be things that won't work as you would expect. If the planning of the implementation was done thoroughly then you will be expecting to see a certain number of these types of problems and they will get resolved. When we resolve these issues our skills improve and we get better as individuals and as a team. There will always be bits missing from a project plan, but as long as the important things have been covered and planned for then the small bits that aren't crucial can be coped with as they arise. If the pros outweigh the cons of making the change then perhaps it's time to go for it. Smar

Improving productivity through formal meetings

Many people hate meetings. There are so many meetings that people attend, and most of the ones I have observed fail to agree / allocate tasks and define responsibilities. They also take too long. Many of these meetings however are routine, they are basically the same meetings week in week out (or day in day out). Taking the time to stop and review the purpose of the meeting can allow you to standardise the meeting, making it more clockwork and functional than it may be currently. The meetings may become 'samey' in structure, but if you can speed them up then they don't become stale. And who knows, you may decide to stop running a few meetings in the process. Smartspeed Consulting Limited Taking the frustration out of on time delivery.