An operations management strategy is a cross functional collection of data that paints a real-time picture of a business, allowing senior management to make appropriate decisions at the right point in time to improve customer satisfaction, quality, reduce costs or streamline inventory and product management.
To create an effective strategy requires performing the following five steps:
1. Pilot study.
Select a product line to use for the pilot study, ideally one that is underperforming or proving problematic as this will offer the greatest opportunity to collaborate, innovate and fully test the processes that will be implemented if successful.
2. Agree KPIs and metrics.
Identify relevant metrics that can be collected from across the business and that will be effective in streamlining business operations. It is better to focus on a small number of value-added metrics rather than trying to record all business data.
3. Implement an MES.
A Manufacturing Execution System will capture relevant data and key process parameters, which can be utilised to calculate the effectiveness of the metrics and KPIs selected for monitoring. This data will later support business decisions such as equipment utilisation values.
4. Use a PLC controller.
A programmable logic controller can be added to existing machinery to provide visibility of all equipment involved in the manufacturing process, including a hydraulic power pack. It will provide valuable insights into the potential for redesigning products and processes to increase efficiency.
5. Test and review.
A vital part of the pilot study is to test the system and to review the metrics and KPIs captured. Organisations such as hydraproducts.co.uk routinely review the data that is generated from their manufacturing plant in order to ensure it is delivering value and allowing corrective or preventive action to be taken in a timely manner.
These steps can be revisited any number of times in order to achieve an agreed set of metrics and KPIs that will truly add value to the business to monitor, record, report and review. Once a pilot study has proven effective, the operations management strategy can be rolled out across the business.