Strategies To Reduce Lead Time When Equipment Goes Down
The business world has always valued efficiency. And looking around at our assembly lines and automated systems designed to make the production process as quick as possible, it’s easy to see the proof of it. But it’s difficult to keep your systems efficient when your machinery breaks down.
If you want to keep your business running smoothly, it’s essential to find functional strategies to reduce lead time when equipment goes down.
What Is Lead Time?
Lead time, as it applies to manufacturing, is the amount of time it takes your company to complete a process from beginning to end. In other words, how long it takes to produce a product. Ultimately, a business wants to keep lead times as short as possible to maximize efficiency.
Importance of Reducing Lead Time During Outages
When manufacturing goes down, it becomes difficult to continue processes as normal. Unfortunately, equipment downtime puts a high cost on companies, with the need to spend money to repair damages and the loss of productivity. Reducing lead times as much as possible is essential to reduce this cost.
Ways To Reduce Lead Time During Equipment Outages
Create a Plan
When something goes wrong, one of the most important factors in determining how quickly and efficiently your company responds is how prepared they were to deal with the issue. Otherwise, you will lose precious lead time trying to decide on the next course of action.
A good contingency plan for equipment outages should include:
- How to protect personnel from potential safety risks
- Where to rent equipment
- Warranty information
- Contact information for repair companies
- Protocol for communicating with suppliers and clients
There should also be a plan in place to prevent future outages, such as regular maintenance and inspection schedules.
Don’t Rely on One Piece of Equipment
If a company is relying on one piece of equipment for every individual task, it puts them at risk for greater lead time disruptions if any of the machinery goes down. The best way to avoid being put in this position as a company is to have at least two pieces of equipment for every stage of the task. That way, you will still be able to produce some of your product while you wait for repairs.
Have Extra Parts on Hand
A factor that makes equipment repairs take longer is waiting for new parts to be shipped in from the manufacturers. This is especially true for equipment that is older with potentially discontinued parts. To cut back on these delays, it pays to have several extra parts on hand for your equipment.
Industrial Automation is a key supplier of industrial electronics parts for a variety of CNC and other types of equipment. Browse our collection to find parts for your company’s machinery.