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Reduce Downtime in Your Manufacturing Business

12 Mar 2019, Posted by cnewman@mcphersonoil.com in General

Downtime in any manufacturing industry can be a serious problem on the business.  While McPherson Oil specializes in studies to keep your plant up and working, there are other ways a manufacturer can experience downtime. Other than down equipment, one of the biggest causes of plant downtime is people.  Here are 3 ways to make sure your people are equipped and motivated to keep your plant going.

1. Communication –  Clear communication between plant staff and managers is essential for not only for efficiency but also safety reasons.  For a plant worker to feel part of the team, the supervisor should clearly communicate the tasks at hand, how to work the equipment and how downtime could affect the plant and profits.  This creates more “buy in” from the worker, knowing that his role is essential to the plant’s success.  Workers that have “bought in” to the success of the plant tend to help meet the plant’s goals more than those that don’t. 

2. Regular Staff Evaluations – Most plants hold annual staff evaluations to keep the plant moving efficiently.  Your staff evaluation can be more powerful if you add a discussion on plant downtime. Also, how do you administer your evaluations? They should be structured to be honest and straight forward and centered around constructive criticism.  Begin each member of your staff’s evaluations with what management or supervisor see he or she is doing well.  Then, offer areas upon which he or she needs to improve.  With proper guidance and insight, your team will be more motivated to keep the plant running efficiently with decreased downtime. 

3. Set Goals – Whether daily, monthly, quarterly, annual or any combination of the four, incentivized goals help reduce error and improve productivity. Both which can help reduce the manufacturer’s downtime.  Incentives encourage the team work toward a common goal – the success of the manufacturer’s business.  In addition, as your team is working toward their goal, they begin to understand the role they play in the process and likely give valuable feedback to make the environment more efficient.  Using employee suggestions on how to decrease downtime or increase efficiency also allows more “buy in,” increasing the morale of your staff.  Goals play a key part in reducing any downtime.

Of course, your manufacturing equipment need to be up and running as well.  At McPherson, we are proud to offer industrial engineering services to help you reach your goals and reduce downtime.  From oil and storage studies to lubricants training, our team is equipped to help your business stay up and running.

McPherson Oil is a proud ExxonMobil distributor.