Looking for lean manufacturing or waste reduction ideas at your manufacturing plant?
Here are some areas to considers:
– Central Manufacturing Supply Areas – Buffer Storage of Manufactured Material
– Kitting Operations – Maintenance Parts Storage
– Tooling Storage – Service Parts Distribution
Further eliminate waste in these areas in a variety of ways, while simultaneously redefining processes for greatly enhanced productivity and accuracy.
Opportunities Inside Areas for Improvement
- Floor space
- Poor productivity
- Less than 100% picking accuracy
- Lax inventory control and security
- Improper ergonomics
- Forklift used for cherry picking
- Extra Labor Costs
- Excessive Replenishment – If reserve of Fast and Medium moving inventory is stored in static shelving,, time could be wasted waiting for replenishment of picked materials
2. Excessive Pick Travel – Use a pedometer to estimate picker travel times. Often workers are traveling for miles during a shift. In a manual operation where works travel to their item they may spend as much as 65% of their shift walking
3. Wasted Search Time – Upon arrival at a picking destination, a worker must visually search the shelves, looking for the correct item and matching up part numbers, a process that can take several minutes or more
4. Pick Errors – Picking involves more than grabbing an item off a shelf. Operators follow a paper pick list, travel to a location, find the item, check the list to determine the number of items required, pick the item, confirm the pick by marking the paper, then deliver the items for packing. Each step is an opportunity for human error
5. Damaged Items – Goods stored on shelves, whether in or out of containers, are exposed to dirt and dust common to warehousing and manufacturing operations. This shortens their shelf life and renders them unsuitable for sale or for internal use
6. Missing Inventory – In open shelving spread across hundreds or thousands of Sq. Ft., items can simply get lost thus leading to inaccurate inventory and Min/Max quantities.
7. Wasted Storage Space – Traditional shelving not only requires a tremendous amount of floor space, it also does not make use of empty overhead space
8. Improper Ergonomics – Shelf based storage forces workers to bend or stretch to reach inventory, or even use ladders to access the highest items. All of these activities increase the chances of injury and workman’s comp claims
Solution of Consider
Consider Automated Storage and Retrieval System that offer fast, easy accessibility to stored inventory, quickly presenting or automatically storing items at the point of operator access for picking and replenishment
Consider automated storage and retrieval technologies that deliver a required item directly to the operator via the “goods to person” concept, dramatically reducing pick travel time.
Consider a light-directed item locating system, such as a light pointer device) used with VLMs, to identify the precise location of the item to be picked or replenished and eliminate search time
Consider a combination of light-directed picking technologies and integrated message centers that communicate pick information to the operator. These visual picking aids reduce processing errors and increase accuracy up to 99.9%
Consider a fully enclosed solution to keep items clean and protected from exposure to dirt, dust and other environmental contaminants. Not only does this extend their life, but also reduces the amount of products or components that must be scrapped due to damage
Consider inventory management software to manage the items within the storage unit. This allows managers to closely monitor stock levels in real time
Consider high density storage solutions that significantly reduce the amount of Sq. Ft. required to store inventory. For example 120 bays of shelving can be condensed into one Vertical lift (85% space savings)
Consider storage solutions that deliver stored items to the “Golden Zone” between the workers shoulder and knees. These solutions minimize unnecessary or excessive motions.
Vertical Lift Vertical Carousel
Vac-Con Case Study- Sewer Cleaning Truck Manufacturer
Vac-Con was struggling with picking 8,000 parts per day in 2 warehouse locations and transporting them to manufacturing in a timely manner.
With automation, Vac-con was able to condense the 2 locations into 1 warehouse location saving 58% floor space and increase productivity by 33% .
For More Information Check Our Knowledge Center or Case Studies
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