Kaizen Philosophy Helps Manufacturing Facilities Achieve Peak Efficiency, Hygiene and Productivity
by CM Staff
Sponsored by Tork North America
Continuously improve business operations and create a safer working environment for employees.
It is no small task for manufacturing facilities to ensure continuous productivity, conduct efficient cleaning operations, and retain an engaged and dedicated workforce. But for a facility to thrive, each of these elements must be at the forefront. And achieving this balance doesn’t have to be a far-fetched idea or a complex multi-year process.
A reimagined approach to workflow – one that incorporates efficiency, hygiene, and productivity – is possible with the Japanese concept of “kaizen.” Kaizen allows facilities to invest in a culture of continuous improvement through preventive maintenance, cleaning optimization, and key employee input to gradually improve productivity and create an optimal work environment.
The Value of Preventive Maintenance
The business philosophy of kaizen is grounded in staying dynamic and implementing changes on an ongoing basis. Within manufacturing, preventive maintenance serves as an agile approach to the routine equipment and assets maintenance required to keep them running. According to Tork research, 87 percent of employees say preventive maintenance reduces machine breakdowns and lost production time.1 Preventive maintenance can address common operational challenges such as leakage or dirt contamination and improves access checkpoints on an ongoing basis. This allows facilities to continuously improve and achieve productivity metrics with small recurring checks.
Placing an Emphasis on Workplace Hygiene
While preventive maintenance is critical, ongoing cleaning enables employees to optimize efficiency by reducing clutter and focusing on the tasks at hand. But doing so requires the right equipment. Look for wiper and cloth dispensers with flexible mounting options – and place them at mission-critical parts of the facility – right where employees need them most. Facility managers should also consider tailoring the cloths and wipers employees use based on the current tasks – ranging from multipurpose wiping papers to advanced heavy-duty cleaning cloths – for even more improvement. Small measures to support continuous cleaning can significantly impact a facility’s production quality, cost, and delivery.
Employees are at the Center
Organizational buy-in and empowering employees are critical components of kaizen. By creating forums for consistent and transparent employee feedback, leadership can better understand where employees have uncovered opportunities for improvement. Subsequently, implementing changes based on this dialogue shows employees their suggestions are heard. Leadership can also work with employees to uncover what additional products or increases in maintenance routines are needed to achieve a higher level of cleanliness that also allows for more productivity. This helps employees take ownership of their work and improves overall morale and productivity.
Implementing the Kaizen Philosophy with Tork
Tork solutions help facilities improve quality control, standardize work, and eliminate waste, all while boosting productivity and helping managers establish a safer, more efficient facility. Implementing kaizen with Tork solutions allows manufacturing facilities to foster positive change, produce an agile work environment, and encourage new ways of approaching productivity that boosts employee engagement and confidence.
Want to learn more about the kaizen approach and products that can help you optimize productivity to continuously improve your facility? Check out our Tork Equipped to Improve Guide today.
1 Tork machine operator research carried out by Psyma (July 2019)