Running an assembly line is a lot like a game of solitaire. As a company, you’re competing against yourself to make the assembly line as productive as possible. A lot of times, it’s about working smarter rather than harder to increase productivity. Fortunately, there are a great many ways that companies attempt to boost productivity, regardless of the products they produce. Here are a few ways to improve productivity on the assembly line.
Review Current Workflow
Before you start thinking about making any changes, you have to know what changes need to be made. This requires an extensive review of your assembly line in which you ask a lot of questions. Do you have the right people in place and do those people have the right skillsets? When you map out your workflow, are there obvious bottlenecks holding up productivity? Do you have the right equipment or can some of your machines be updated?
Once you answer some of these questions, you’ll know if any changes need to be made. Just keep in mind that you don’t want change for the sake of change. However, if you spot problems that are a safety hazard, costing you money, or slowing down productivity, it’s worth looking into ways that you can make improvements.
Automate Hot Melt Adhesives
One area where new technology can mean drastic improvements on the assembly line is the use of hot melt adhesives. Most product assembly lines require some kind of adhesive at some point and technology has advanced to the point that skilled labor is not always required. Companies like Sure Tack Systems offer spray applicators, slot coating applicators, and extrusion applicators that are either partially or fully automated and compatible with a wide variety of industries. These systems can be relied upon to apply the right volume and pattern of adhesive every time, helping keep the assembly line moving seamlessly.
Keep Up with Maintenance
When you invest in modern equipment, it’s crucial that you also keep up with regular maintenance on those machines. You want to keep up with the recommended maintenance schedules for your expensive machines and not wait if repairs are needed. In order to maximize productivity, these machines need to be working at optimal levels all the time. If a piece of equipment breaks down or needs to be replaced, you could be looking at an extended period of downtime, which will hurt your productivity a lot more than if you just took a small amount of time to take care of routine maintenance on your equipment.
Invest in Employee Education and Training
If you start investing in new equipment, you have to make sure your employees are properly trained to use that new equipment. After all, with new technology, workers need to develop new skills. This is why it’s wise to encourage your employees to explore new education and participate in training programs. You can also hold in-house workshops to help train employees on new equipment. Even if you have fewer workers on your assembly line than you used to, it’s still smart to invest in their training so that they can develop the skill sets they need to keep the line moving at a good pace. It’s also vital that your employees can troubleshoot any problems that pop up with the new equipment so that the high-tech machines you invested in are running properly.
Set Goals, Offer Incentives
The final way to boost productivity on the assembly line is to set goals and let your workers know that they are responsible for reaching them. Obviously, these goals should be reasonable so you don’t set up your workers for failure. These goals should also be accompanied by incentives for employees who work on the assembly line for meeting and exceeding your production goals. This keeps employees accountable for their work while also motivating them to always work to the best of their abilities. Remember, happy and motivated employees will always keep the assembly line flowing.
Contact us today for more information about our hot melt systems.