Lean manufacturing has leapfrogged from that sector to the service sector over the past decade or so. The principles of lean manufacturing have become fundamental to overall equipment efficiency (OEE) in any operation, whether that is an industrial laundering outfit or a SaaS provider. In manufacturing, lean practices identify and eliminate waste, seek out methods of increasing productivity, and consequently up overall value derived from operations. Pursuing lean practices can also serve to improve OEE for service industries. Computerized maintenance management software (CMMS) has been shown to positively impact efforts to implement lean measures.
What’s in it for me? Connecting the Dots
Essential to lean operations is consistent and reliable tracking of key performance indicators (KPIs). This necessitates that facility personnel record not only the occurrence but also the nature of stoppages and the quantity and frequency of spoilage or waste over time. Failed (or incomplete) implementations of new methodologies can often be traced to inadequate incentives for unilateral buy-in. To avoid the substantial loss of a failed lean practices implementation, there are actions that managers can take to translate their value to their personnel.
The Seven (Not Necessarily Deadly) Types of Waste in Operations:
- Defects – Flawed products cut into profits multiple ways (e.g., repair, downtime, replacement costs, and delayed to-market times). CMMS allows managers and shop personnel to isolate the factors contributing to defective production and identify the best practices to reduce future occurrences, thereby improving OEE.
- Overproduction – This potential waste can occur when a facility lacks a centralized repository for asset management. (e.g., CMMS)
- Inventory – Too little transparency with regards to inventory management can lead to overstocking inventory storerooms. CMMS enables floor shop and management to see what inventory is actually necessary, on a continuous basis, and when to replenish reserves, thereby reducing the wastage of either over- or under-stocking supplies.
- Motion – inefficient personnel workflow can be attributed to poor work practices, processes, or building layout. OEE software or CMMS can be utilized to assess where redundancies, bottlenecks, or other red flags in work processes are occurring.
The first of a series on CMMS and lean best practices in the service sector.
Dana Madama is the Online Marketing Manager at eMaint Enterprises, located in Marlton, NJ, which provides CMMS and EAM solutions for all of your maintenance and asset management needs.