Addressing Challenges Caused by Low Production Visibility in Manufacturing

3 min read
May 17, 2024 9:06:30 AM

In the intricate world of manufacturing, where precision and efficiency are paramount, data and information reign supreme to propel production forward, especially in the highly specialized sector of metal manufacturing.

At the heart of any manufacturing operation lies a crucial element: production visibility.

Detailed Insights into Production Visibility

At its essence, production visibility refers to the degree of accuracy and completeness of data and information gathered as employees and machines perform their tasks. Do you know when one operation ends and another begins? Can you tell when an order is complete? Do you know if, when, and how any problems occur and what steps were taken to correct them? Production visibility is a measure of your confidence in understanding and insight into the manufacturing activities that occur in your facility.

Despite its importance, it's alarmingly common to encounter significant gaps in visibility, primarily due to data not being collected thoroughly or accurately.

For example, a simple act like an erased chalk number on a cart can sever the critical link between physical objects and the necessary accompanying data. Suddenly, knowing is replaced with guesswork. Moreover, reliance on manual data collection methods can further exacerbate these challenges, leading to many production inefficiencies. When inaccuracies in data collection and production visibility arise, they can manifest as increased operational costs, diminished output, business risk, increased costs, and a notable reduction in overall efficiency.

Unveiling the Hidden Costs of Inadequate Production Visibility

Many manufacturers focus just enough effort on production visibility to keep production moving. They think their efforts are good enough, not realizing there are hidden costs to a lack of visibility.

  1. Escalated Labor Costs: Manual data collection can significantly disrupt the smooth continuity of production processes. Precious time that could be allocated to productive activities is instead consumed by the laborious task of gathering and documenting data, thus creating unnecessary bottlenecks in production. The financial burden of manual data collection can quickly escalate.
  2. Costly Human Errors: Mistakes in data collection can lead to expensive consequences, ranging from minor inaccuracies in picking orders to severe errors that result in production being discarded or incurring substantial chargebacks. Although human errors are an unavoidable aspect of any business operation, their effective management and containment are crucial for maintaining success.
  3. Inventory Management Challenges: Inefficient inventory management practices can spawn a myriad of issues, particularly for businesses that rely on just-in-time (JIT) delivery models to enhance efficiency. A lack of cohesive execution between ordering processes and asset tracking can compel companies to maintain excessive stock levels, thereby inflating storage costs and eroding profit margins.
  4. Redundant Data Entry and Its Implications: The maintenance of multiple databases not only results in unnecessary expenditure of labor but also heightens the likelihood of errors. This redundancy fosters the creation of data silos that can significantly hinder the overall operational efficiency of the business.
  5. Comprehensive Production Inefficiencies: The absence of accurate, real-time data to manage production processes can adversely affect various aspects of operations, from forecasting shipping schedules and managing workforces to identifying opportunities for performance enhancements. This lack of visibility is especially costly when implementing a change order or schedule adjustment, and can lead to problems that quickly spiral out of control.

Leveraging the Power of Barcode Scanning and RFID Technology for Enhanced Asset Tracking

The strategic implementation of advanced barcode and RFID systems presents a powerful solution to overcome the challenges, streamlining the process of achieving optimal production visibility. These innovative labeling technologies enable the tracking of virtually every aspect of the production process, granting immediate access to precise, real-time data. This invaluable data is instrumental in identifying and rectifying inefficiencies, thereby enhancing productivity and operational efficiency across the manufacturing spectrum.

At GO2 Partners, we are dedicated to guiding you toward achieving superior production visibility. Our team of expert label and asset tracking specialists is ready and waiting to engage with you, keen to explore your specific production requirements. Take the step today for a more efficient, cost-effective tomorrow.

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