Visual Management is a technique that conveys information through visual aids rather than written ones. With the placement of a simple Safety Tracking Board on a shop floor, one is easily able to understand the entire months safety standing at a glance. Immediate attention is drawn to incidents, allowing analysis and corrective measures to be executed on the spot.
In business Visual Management helps expose defects and problems allowing them to be addressed quickly, increase efficiency and clarity. Whatever the data or representation, it can be interpreted by anyone at a glance. Information can be shared across departments, hierarchy’s and various process functions.
Visual Management Boards create consistency throughout a workplace. They should be easy to understand by all and have a clear visibility from a distance. Techniques like colour coding and using varied fonts sizes helps understand stats, targets and other relevant info at a glance.
Why use Visual Management
- Share Information
- Build standards
- Stop abnormalities once they occur
- Share standards
- Warn about abnormalities
- Prevent abnormalities all together
Benefits of Visual Management
- Improved safety & ergonomics in the workplace
- Increased engagement of employees
- Continuous Improvement encourages engagement throughout the company
- Work is standardised
- Less Defects
- Reduced wastage saves capital
- Improve productivity
- Satisfy Customer demand
- Quick changeovers reduce setup time
- Less downtime
At STM, we understand the need for an efficient value stream. Our attention to quality products backed with a rich experience in creative Visual Management has enabled us to provide the right service to our clients across industry sectors.
‘Lean’ is a management philosophy used to create a culture of continuous improvement by maximising value for a customer, minimising waste and focusing on creating a flow of high value-added processes.
The term ‘Lean’ was coined by Jim Womack Ph.D, to describe the ‘Toyota Production System’ which has always been one of the finest examples of effective Lean implementation.
It is a culture of teamwork and continuous improvement, teaching people to identify & eliminate waste. This in turn creates a more efficient process and adds value.
‘Waste’ is anything that doesn’t add value to the customer
Processes add value when they meet 3 main conditions:
- The activity must transform the product
- The customer must be willing to pay for it
- It must be done correctly the first time
One of the objectives of Visual Management is to identify ‘Wastes’ and eliminate them throughout any ‘Value Stream’.
The 7 major ‘wastes’ are identified as:
- Over production
Producing more than required by the customer
Rejects, Repair, Rework
Minimise the people and transportation needed to move material
Any time not spent on production through the value stream is considered as waste
Knowing the right amount of inventory to be maintained at each step
A workstation should be equipped with the right tools for that process to avoid wastage of motion
Overworking of any step i.e. paperwork, extra data collection, over polishing etc.
Lean does not just apply to the Manufacturing sector, it can be applied to any business or process that creates ‘value’. It is a way of thinking that empowers employees through problem solving and coaching and helps organisations be more innovative and competitive. Lean develops respect for people: leaders motivate and coach people helping them grow professionally and personally.
At STM Engineers, our goal is to help organisations unleash the full potential of Lean and in turn reach their maximum capability.
5S is a Japanese technique that enabled the Toyota Production System (TPS) by the leaders at Toyota in the early & mid 20th Century. 5S aims to increase the value of products for the customer by eliminating waste from the production process.
The 5 S’s Seiri (Sort), Seiton (Set in order), Seiso (Shine), Seiketsu (Standardise) and Shitsuke (Sustain) are used to systematically achieve organisation, cleanliness and standardisation in the workplace.
5S tools such as Kaizen, Visual Management, Kanban, Heijunka, and Scrum help us achieve these goals.
The purpose of this is to create neatness by only having the essential items for a process and to eliminate unnecessary clutter.
(Set in order)
Creating a clearly labelled place for each item allows for quick retrieval and storage. This helps promote efficient work flow and maintenance of tolls in the company.
Systematic Cleaning in the workplace ensures that no time is wasted, everything is where it belongs and the work flow between shifts is continuous.
Developing procedures, schedules and practices allows employees to do any task at any station as everything required is already there.
The most important task is to review and sustain all processes implemented. This avoids going backwards into old practices. When any new issue arises, the first 4 S’s are reviewed to make changes to the value stream as and when required.
Implementing the 5S’s increases efficiency, reduces wastes in all forms, increases safety, minimises mistakes and increases the overall morale of the workers by providing them with a workplace that they are proud to contribute to.
‘Kaizen’ translates to ‘change for better’ in Japanese. It is a continuous effort of improvement that can be used in any industry and in your day to day life. It is the effort of the entire workforce to make small but frequent and continuous changes to improve all processes and systems of an organization.
The PDCA cycle is a simple & effective 4 step process, that is repeated improve quality and effectiveness and eliminate change in the value stream.
Identify the problem, get relevant data and find the root cause. Define the steps of change and predict the results
Make & implement a solution. Test the solution and measure the effectiveness
Examine the results through data comparison and confirm that you have made an improvement
Record the results, update & inform others of the process changes & make recommendations for future PDCA cycles
Advantages of Aluminium
Light in Weight
The light weight makes it easier to handle and less expensive to ship than any other common metals like iron, steel, copper or brass.
Industrial grade aluminium alloys come in various strengths. They can then be selected to match and suit product needs.
Aluminium profile offers the flexibility of design while maintaining its strength. A wide range of finishes and surface textures can be applied as well.
As it doesn’t acquire a magnetic charge Aluminium is useful for high-voltage applications and electronics.
Aluminium does not burn even at extremely high temperatures. When exposed to heat they do not emit hazardous emissions.
The sections can easily be dismantled and reused if required. It retains a high scrap value & can be recycled without losing its characteristics.
The natural metallic surface is aesthetically pleasing and goes with industrial aesthetics. Additional anodising does not affect the appearance.
Protected by its naturally occurring oxide film and anodising techniques, Aluminium does not rust giving it a longer life.
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