Steps to Improving Manufacturing Quality
November 4, 2016
Improving Manufacturing Quality
When considering how to increase production while still retaining customer loyalty, the most important concern is maintaining the quality of the product. By manufacturing a quality product, businesses can ensure that profits and sales will continue to rise. A common mistake in growing businesses is to enlarge the manufacturing capabilities without ensuring the quality of the product will be maintained. This leads to a consumer that is disappointed in the product, which will lead to a decline in sales and profits over time. There are strategic steps that must be taken in order to scale manufacturing while maintaining the quality of the product.
The first step to consider in improving manufacturing quality is process improvement. In any business, there are inefficiencies that cost money and time. As a business expands and production increases, the results of inefficiencies become magnified and must be dealt with early on. By doing a ground-up evaluation of the current processes in-place, the actions of employees as they perform their jobs, and the quality of the equipment, a well-rounded analysis of inefficiencies can be conducted. Process improvement encourages the removal of redundancies, unnecessary steps, and helps companies create a streamlined process.
The Right People
Once efficient processes are in place, the next step is finding the right employees to perform the work. For any business, the quality of the workforce makes an incredible impact on the quality of the product being produced. To find the right people, create an ideal personality profile of the type of worker that would do well in the company environment and target candidates with the knowledge, skills, and qualifications to do the work well. For those with the right personality, but that lack extensive experience, develop an in-house training program to help them advance within the company. With the right processes and people in place, the next task is adopting a system of Total Productive Maintenance.
Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)
Total Productive Maintenance is a system that fosters the improvement and maintenance of production and quality. In manufacturing specifically, this often means having an operator or team of operators whose job it is to identify problems before they arise. In approaching the equipment with a focus on proactive and preventative maintenance, the likelihood of having large issues arise that will lead to a halt in production and productivity decreases.
By designating one employee to be the on-site head of Total Productive Maintenance, this employee can be focused singularly on day-to-day process improvement and maintenance checks for all equipment to catch any failures before they happen. In addition to utilizing the Total Productive Maintenance model to improve manufacturing quality, it is also necessary to form a Quality Control (QC) team.
Systematic Quality Control in Manufacturing
Quality Control is a system of maintaining a certain set of determined standards in manufactured products by taking a sample of the output and testing to be sure it meets the required specifications. The establishment of a Quality Control team can drastically improve the quality of the product by implementing a system of accountability and a series of checks that makes it possible to identify and correct problem areas prior to products being sent to consumers.
By utilizing a Quality Control team to manage the output of the manufacturing process to ensure quality does not decline, mistakes can be avoided and inefficiencies drastically reduced. The decrease in inefficiencies leads to a reduction in production costs. The Quality Control system ensures the most effective utilization of resources and improves the overall manufacturing quality. Another effective method for improving manufacturing quality is to plan for continuous improvement.
For any business, it is necessary to set guidelines and goals for continuous improvement. Following a system that plans, monitors, evaluates, and measures results will force processes, products, and employees to continually improve. Develop a set of measurable, attainable goals for all areas involved in manufacturing in order to ensure the manufacturing quality continues to improve.
How NAPS Can Help
North American Product Sharing, Inc. (NAPS) can help companies focus on improving the manufacturing quality of their product by taking over the administration and compliance management portion of the business. Without having to focus on administration and compliance management, companies can focus their efforts solely on the manufacturing processes, quality control and product improvement.