To anyone outside the industry, manufacturing topics may seem foreign or devastatingly simple. You might wonder why quality seems to mean different things, or why manufacturers always talk about Lean when we know that can be bad for posture. But while these might sound off-putting, most people are actually familiar with manufacturing concepts in their everyday lives.
Among these ideas is Just-In-Time (JIT) Manufacturing, a specific principle used in Lean manufacturing to improve processes. While it might sound like Justin Timberlake’s new watch collection, it’s actually about using what you need and having less clutter. For everyday life, it can be helpful to think about JIT in terms of how you might prepare a meal at home. Unless you have unlimited space in your kitchen, you don’t keep endless quantities of things you rarely use. If you had to drive out to get coffee beans before actually drinking your coffee every morning, it would waste time and money, making the endeavor a miserable one that would barely be worth the effort.
Thankfully, the JIT ideology offers balance to the madness. You may get all your ingredients for the next day from the store on your way home from work, enabling you to stock up without sacrificing space, time, or materials. In a factory setting, JIT reduces the amount of time that parts will stay in a warehouse or otherwise remain onsite before being delivered to the customer. Ideally, supplies arrive on a timely, as-needed basis, which keeps extra tools from hogging extra space. This may require more shipments and smaller increments, but it proves essential to the stability of the JIT system and allows operations to become more efficient over time.
JIT manufacturing may seem simple, but it’s a problem the average person – not just business owners – faces in ordinary situations. Just know it isn’t worth trying to get fresh coffee beans every morning at the supermarket – it is more than okay to keep things on hand for the right time.
Want to know how MAGNET can help you manufacture success? Call Linda Barita at 216.391.7766 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Article submitted by Bank of America For mid-market companies, business success and responsible growth aren’t mutually exclusive. In fact, prioritizing responsible growth is becoming increasingly important, and successful companies are making sustainability central to their growth strategies. Beyond good corporate citizenship, they are recognizing the intrinsic link between the strength of their business and that of the communities and economies in which they operate. Leading your growth with those goals in mind builds resilience and better solutions for the future. Consider the following: Responsible growth companies perform better. Companies that consider the impact of risks and opportunities on the environment, local communities and society may produce better financial results than those that don’t. Additionally, 90% of companies believe a sustainability plan is important for remaining competitive. Responsible growth companies attract investment. A 2016 study by MIT Sloan Management Review and Boston Consulting Group surveyed 3,000 executives and managers from more than 100 countries. Findings revealed that 75% of senior executives in investment firms agree that a company’s sustainability performance is materially important to their investment decisions, and nearly half would not invest in a company with a poor sustainability record. Ninety percent of executives see sustainability as important, but only
HEADLINE The survey definitively shows that product innovation leads to more growth, while “grow your own workforce” strategies will be needed to fill the major labor shortages hampering small manufacturer growth. Emerging technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT), 3D printing, and digital manufacturing are beginning to enhance innovation and productivity, but still have significant room for adoption amongst Ohio’s small manufacturing businesses. ABOUT THE SURVEY Under the direction of the Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership (Ohio MEP), MAGNET: The Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network conducted a thorough survey of Ohio’s manufacturing base. Contributing approximately 20% of Ohio’s jobs (and driving in some regions up to 50% of Ohio’s economy), and generating a disproportionate amount of export revenues and Gross Regional Product, manufacturing is critical to Ohio. Greater than 95% of Ohio’s manufacturers are small (under 500 employees), and these manufacturers need to remain competitive both nationally and internationally to ensure our economy’s health. Ohio’s Development Services Agency and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which runs the MEP, recognizes the importance of this sector and fuels MAGNET and the Ohio MEP program to directly serve and support innovation, efficiency, and growth in small and medium manufacturers. What manufacturers need
How Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Can Help Keep Our Engineers Safe and Our Manufacturing Strong Recall how difficult it was to put together complex LEGO creations when you were a child or helping a child. Now, picture assembling a fighter plane from a room full of parts. Even highly trained engineers can benefit from technology to help improve consistency and quality. Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are making near-perfect assembly a possibility in the manufacturing space. By wearing AR glasses that use cameras, depth sensors and motion sensors to overlay images onto the real working environment, engineers and factory workers can visualize the exact bolts, parts, part numbers and instructions on how to assemble a particular component correctly. Lockheed Martin began using AR goggles and improved F-35 assembly time by 30 percent, in addition to increasing accuracy to 96 percent. In order to remain competitive, businesses should consider the ways VR and AR can improve efficiency and supply chain productivity. According to a recent BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research report, AR platforms can provide companies up to 25 percent in cost savings on installation of equipment. Here are four ways VR/AR is disrupting the mid-market manufacturing space: