26Sep2016

Want to know how THROUGHPUT can consistently be increased?

The THROUGHPUT is the value generated in any business for their customers. Increasing the THROUGHPUT while maintaining the same resources, thus increases the value not only to the customers but also to the business. Analogically it is like improving the traffic flow through both engineering and control. I have listed out some hints on increasing the THROUGHPUT that can be used by all industries.

  • The value stream from customer to customer is mapped with material/documentation flow, information/decision flow and start/stop triggers.
  • The jams (waiting work), backtracking (rework/queries) and detours (short-cuts) are identified.
  • The set-up/prep time, % first time right, turn around time, cycle time, % every time right, lead time, touch time are measured and noted down.
  • Load calculated based on standard working time and demand as well as 24x7 utilisation monitored.
  • Resource with maximum calculated load also demonstrates maximum utilisation and maximum orders waiting seen before this resource (Constraint)
  • Resource (Constraint) causing the maximum jam also has the maximum load and demonstrates maximum utilisation.
  • The throughput from the value stream is continuous without any interruptions and corresponds to the throughput from the Constraint.
  • The standard working time of the Constraint is adjusted to the demand to make sure that the Constraint always has at least 3 orders waiting to be processed with full kitting (100%, even 99% is 0%!)
  • All the decisions/priorities in the company are to the best benefit of Constraint for maximising the throughput from the Constraint without bad multi-tasking.
  • The first priority is to reduce the non value added time of the Constraint to ZERO before reducing the value added times.

Regularly monitoring the availability of sufficient full kits, sufficient spare parts, sufficient standby trained and competent personnel, MTBF/MTTR, FTR/ETR, Set-up/Prep Time, TAT/CT, bad multi tasking of the constraint as well as enforcing a strict control on the inflow to match the throughput of the constraint to ensure continuous flow without any jams naturally increases the overall throughput.

Finally, recognising that each one of us can only influence the future and not the past, is a strong motivator to start with the basics by walking through the value stream to increase the throughput.
Happy Reading!