While some manufacturers are always looking for ways to cut costs, others continue to allow their expenses to go unchecked. Manufacturers should invest wisely in each one of their projects regardless of their sector. In my 20 years of business ownership, I’ve found that investments that improve business operations and processes while eliminating unnecessary waste and spending have always led to a significant ROI. Because of that, I wanted to discuss some proven steps entrepreneurs can take to keep production costs to a minimum.
Simpler, Smarter Designs
Production costs skyrocket when manufacturers have too many demands that cannot be met on time. One way to solve this is by simplifying the product designs to reduce the workload and continue to produce satisfactory products for customers.
In a large, disorganized warehouse, employees can waste hours looking for items. This wasted time leads to lost inventory and reduced levels of production, which is a waste of company resources. Companies that invest in training employees on efficient organizational methods benefit from greater productivity in the workforce while also empowering employees to continually improve.
Sometimes processes can hit bottlenecks. When workers are running around in circles, unsure of what to do, they waste more time. A streamlined workflow ensures that they follow one specific task after another in a series of consecutive steps. There is always a specific flow of tasks that is faster and easier than other methods. For instance, to save time and effort, the workers should unpack new inventory immediately before other workers pull the merchandise to be packed and shipped to the customer.
Setting unrealistic or overly complicated goals with no potential for being accomplished by the deadline is a significant fault in manufacturing companies. I’ve often seen companies set production demands too high with deadlines that are too short and with too few workers. This leads to high worker churn and recruitment costs, plus the time it takes to train new employees and get them up to speed.
Another error is planning product designs that are over the top or too complicated for average-skilled workers. Before businesses try to streamline their workflows, they should focus on streamlining their goals and the steps needed to achieve those goals.
In a typical warehouse, it’s easy to know when people are overworked, but it’s harder to know when electricity is being wasted. Company leadership must have their fingers on the pulse of the company at all times. Since the management team pays the bills, they must remain attentive and know when money is being wasted and could be more wisely spent. From the machinery to inventory control, every step of the manufacturing process should be reviewed closely to ensure efficiency.
While all industries may have their own particular areas of inefficiency and waste, all industries can benefit from streamlined processes and cutting costs. If you’re interested in learning more about lean management, check out my company, Value-Centered Solutions. We can help you transform your company into a lean success.