• Aventec

Is Continuous Improvement a Priority? Here Are The Top 5 Functions You Can Start With

Updated: Apr 20

-Shashank Nanivadekar

Non-value added tasks that go undetected and un-traced can become the silent killers in your company: They infect everything from productivity and quality, spends on inventory and rework, manager success, leadership potential, and above all, team morale. Using a system to enhance your value stream involves looking for wasted tasks and non-value added activities with a fine-tooth comb, but here's the rub. Most people will tell you right away where they feel they are wasting time, but they won't be able to quantify it. In order to quantify it you need a mechanism to quantify and track the flow of operations throughout the value chain: and it starts with good project management. Project Management Manage people, tasks, deliverables, and changes with the huge burden of update Microsoft Project files by hand. Getting status updates requires meetings, and herding together very unwilling people who fundamentally believe that "this did not need to be a meeting." Lean Project Management should be passively managed and not require manual updates. Tasks that are complete should automatically update project status Requirements & Change Management What your customers need and what your engineers need sometimes get lost in translation. Customer requirements help define tasks and milestones that your change management processes use to identify deliverables. It then makes perfect sense to have your requirements management and change management processes to be streamlined. CAD-EBOM-MBOM Integration Most often, CAD product structures sit separately in your database from your EBOM and MBOM information. While some teams may have some integration between engineering and manufacturing BOMs, being able to tie CAD configurations to your EBOM directly allows you to eliminate needless data-entry errors. Production Planning & Scheduling Streamlining your master production plan and detailed scheduling is a key task in making your manufacturing lean. Cost overruns happen mainly due to schedulers not being able to react to surges in demands, reworks, or badly managed inventory. Schedulers often rely on the forecast to do their scheduling and when something happens that throws a wrench in that plan, the best schedulers rely on tools that tell them exactly what changes they need to make. The worst schedulers? They erase the board, or open a new excel or project file, and sketch out a new schedule. The next day? Same thing. Manufacturers are making massive gains in improving cycle time, service levels and work-order fulfillment. Click here to get your link to watch the webinar for free! Education Any company that doesn't prioritize training their employees for peak performance is leaving money on the table. If all your departments are the active players in the team, education is the mechanism through which the best players know whom they should pass to and when they should attack. Key areas to train your employees in can range from and include any of:

  • software

  • machines

  • best practices

  • guidelines

  • decision making

  • data-gathering

  • peer-to-peer enforcement

  • common social portals


Takeaway Making your company isn't as single and plug-and-play as buying a PLM software suite. The key problem is cultural, and perhaps mechanical. Its not just what you do that adds waste in your system, its also how you do it, where you do it, how often you do it, and why do you do it that way. To make your operations lean in order to gain a sustainable competitive advantage, Mangers, Directors and Executive leadership should pay serious attention to where their teams are losing the three most important factors to a company: matter, time, and money. Want to get lean in your business but not sure where to start? Check out this free E-Book on the 7 types of wastes you might be seeing in your team.

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