Keeping products rolling efficiently through your assembly line is a must to ensure the proper quantity if available for consumers. While you may believe that you have a very efficient setup, there’s always room for improvement. Here are four improvements you can make to your assembly line to make it more efficient.
Start by Understanding Bottlenecks
Your equipment should help you to determine what their efficiency and wait times are. Look for the items that have the longest wait times. Then, look at the machines right before them to find your bottleneck. To enhance your efficiency, you want to start by learning which machines are your biggest halts in the production process. It’s much more manageable to handle improving the machine time of one product as compared to trying to take on all of them at the same time.
Assess Your Robotic Needs
If there are still parts of your production process that require human contact, you need to assess if robotic automation can help. While you may be thinking about the huge upfront cost of this type of automation equipment, the reality is that they pay for themselves fairly quickly. Plus, machines can provide precision 100 percent of the time. Humans are naturally prone to errors.
Institute Routine Maintenance
You may be wondering how this is supposed to improve your assembly line. Won’t it just slow it down? The reality is that many facility managers skip over routine maintenance for the fact that it takes time out of the production line. However, realize this time is controllable. You can schedule burner service and other routine maintenance when it fits your business best and you know exactly how long it’s going to take. When you don’t do routine maintenance, you’ll end up with equipment failure that is unexpected and will have you guessing how long your assembly line will be out of production.
Reassess Your Layout
One of the biggest problems that factories have is an inefficient layout. This typically stems from just the regular addition of new equipment and processes being added. Instead of reassessing what layout makes the most sense each time, many facility managers will just put the new equipment in an area where there is space. You need to take the time to reassess your layout and determine where there is unnecessary movement. Just by changing up your layout, you can save the unnecessary movement time for each product coming off the line in the future.
Improving your assembly line really comes down to assessing what you have and how it can best be enhanced. The above are just four of the many different approaches you can take to improving your assembly line. Just remember that this should be an area that requires constant improvement.