The reduction of non-productive manufacturing time and total cycle times are one of the key elements to remaining competitive in a fabricating environment. From the time the order is received until the moment it ships is the true total measure of the fabrication time for any given order.
Control front end processing times
Some companies measure the set-up times, the hard machine manufacturing times, and the waiting times, but only once the order hits the fabrication floor. True order times also need to account for the soft processing times as well; order entry, production planning, engineering and programming. It represents a true measure of what your turn-around time is and the reason why some companies win the order, even when their price maybe a little higher.
Delivery turnaround time is a competitive differentiator. When a customer needs a quick turnaround, they will most often pay a premium for a fast delivery.
Analyze total cycle time
Before investing in capital equipment, a thorough and exhaustive analysis of the total cycle time must be conducted at each stage of the order process.
1. Once the order is received, how long does it take to enter the order into the Company’s ERP system?
2. How long does it take before the Bill of Materials (BOM) is created and production is planned?
3. How long before raw materials are allocated for the order?
4. How long before engineering and programming are able to supply the machine programs?
5. What are the bottlenecks and what can be done to streamline the front-end process?
6. How much of the process is paper based and how can the process be streamlined by going fully digital?
Maintain machine cycle time
While new machines continue to push productivity levels, the machines themselves require even faster material handling than ever before to keep pace. Without the materials being presented to the machines in a timely manner, the machines sit idle. It is not cost effective to invest in faster machines when the machines are not supported with timely material loading and unloading capabilities.
Material automation is the key to reducing non-productive manufacturing times and maintaining machine cycle time.
When the order is transmitted to the machine, the materials need to be readily available. While the machine is processing the first sheet, the automation readies the next sheet to be processed. Once the material is processed, the automation unloads the finished products while the machine processes the next sheet. In this example the only non-productive manufacturing time should be the cycle from the end of one sheet to the beginning of the next. The benefits of automation are the consistency in maintaining machine cycle times and the reduction of non-productive waiting times.
Reduce total order turnaround
Reducing machine set-up times contribute to reducing non-productive times. Each and every set-up needs to be streamlined to the shortest possible time. Only after an exhaustive analysis of the non-productive times from the time the order is received until it ships, can a valued assessment of the true impact of investing in new equipment be made.
Reducing front-end processing times, non-productive times and machine cycle times, contributes to the reduction of the total order turnaround time and one of the keys to competitive differentiation.
Case Study: ADAM Integrated prides itself on, and advertises itself as a business that focuses on quality control processes and high efficiency production techniques.
By Frank Arteaga, Head of Product Marketing, NAFTA Region
Bystronic Inc., Elgin, IL – Voice.email@example.com