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3 Essential Skills Every Manufacturing Manager Needs

3 Essential Skills Every Manufacturing Manager Needs
Manufacturing managers have a lot of responsibilities. The flow of production runs through them, and their decision-making skills can have tangible consequences on the balance sheet of a business. With these three skills mastered, any manufacturing manager can become the engine that powers a successful business. Supply Chain Management This is one of the most important skills a manufacturing manager needs. No matter what sector of the manufacturing industry you work in, the manufacturing team is a part of a supply chain. Materials come in, and products go out. You need to be able to handle the logistical challenges that come with managing the constant flow of both raw materials and the finished product. The speed of this flow governs the capacity and potential of the business. The more you can do in less time, the more capacity and potential for profit your manufacturing process has. Product Development and Knowledge Not only do you need to know a lot about the products you are manufacturing, but you also need to have a knowledge of products, production processes, market demands, and methods of product development. Your position as a manufacturing manager puts you in a unique position to understand how a product is manufactured, and why. You can use your experience to inform both design and marketing processes to help develop better products that give more value to customers while being simpler to produce. At this level of management, you need to have a wider view of the business to make better decisions and better products. You can learn more about product development with ICAgile certifications in Product Ownership, get certification in your existing skills, and become a recognized expert in your field. This can be very beneficial to your resume, and your role in your workplace. Leadership and Team Building When people think of the manufacturing process, they often think of large machines that build a product piece by piece on a long, automated line that weaves its way through a warehouse. The truth is that a manufacturing process is only ever as good as the people that operate it. You can have highly efficient machinery, and automate nearly all of its processes, but without the right operation, they are useless metal. Manufacturing managers need to be able to both hire and inspire. You will be involved in the hiring process and must be able to spot signs of a good worker who will fit in with the team. You need to inspire the team daily too. The work on a production line, and all across the manufacturing process, can become monotonous, much more than the average job. It has huge benefits though and can be a lot of fun. If you work hard at keeping your workers enthused and involved, you will be able to grow both as a manager and as a business. These skills will all help you to develop as a manufacturing manager and be successful at it. You need to carefully balance the management of man and machine so that they can work in harmony together. Become an expert in your field by honing these skills and using them to push up your production...
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How IoT is Changing the Future of the Supply Chain

How IoT is Changing the Future of the Supply Chain
Supply chain management (SCM) is the broad range of activities needed to plan, control and execute a product’s flow, from procuring raw materials and production through distribution to the final customer, in the most streamlined and cost-effective way possible. Ensuring all supply chain components are running as smooth as possible helps businesses to provide on-time delivery of products and services, with changing consumer demands and supply chain disruptions brought about by the recent pandemic. This blog post’s focus is to throw some light on “How IoT aka Internet of Things is bringing about a big impact” in the future of supply chain activities. Let’s first understand the 7 Principles of SCM Adapt supply chain based on service needs of every customer segmentCustomize logistics network for each customer segmentAlign demand planning across the supply chainDifferentiate product closer to customer’Outsource strategicallyDevelop information technology that support multi-level decision makingAdopt both service and finance metrics Now let’s look at the Impact of IoT in the future of supply chain. Asset Tracking One of the top and fundamental function of IoT in supply chain is asset tracking. Locating containers, objects and personnel is considered way important among the organizations Through RFID and GPS sensors, real-time location of a product, truck or shipping container can be known by logistics operators. Fleet Management Fleet management is another area to improve the efficiency of logistics operations. Through IoT it is now possible to connect all fleets to each other, which allows the fleet dispatchers to collect breadth of data from their fleet operations. Data included are: 1. Weather conditions 2. Traffic situations 3. Driving pattern and 4. Average speed When thoroughly analysed, this data can help logistics operators to find more efficient routes, manage driver head counts, save on fuel cost and optimize their fleet reliability, availability and efficiency. Tracking and Monitoring Inventory Levels in Real Time IoT sensors play a great role in tracking and monitoring inventory levels in real time. Amazon is now using Wi-Fi robots to scan product codes present on the products to keep track of their inventory levels. Bluetooth tags and beacons offer tracking data in more confined areas- many retail stores are using these tracking technology software to monitor customer traffic and provide marketing messages to their customers. Vendor Management By asset tracking., organizations tend to come out with high quality output, which in turn improves their relationship with the vendors. A recent survey states that up to 65% of the value a company’s product /service is derived from its suppliers. Predictive Maintenance Being an asset intensive process, right from production machinery to warehouse equipment and delivery vehicles, these assets need to be continuously monitored to ensure their functional efficiency. Smart sensors help the logistics operators gauge if a particular asset needs to be serviced ahead of time. This reduces considerable asset down time and asset failure, thus saving cost including maintenance...
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How to Keep on Top of Your Company’s Stock

How to Keep on Top of Your Company’s Stock
One of the most important features of your business is your stock. Without any stock, you can’t fulfill any sales and therefore you won’t be able to make any money. That’s why it’s always good to keep on top of your company’s stock, to make sure you have enough to sell but not too much that you might end up throwing away. With this in mind, here are some ways in which you can achieve optimum stock levels in your business. Keep the room tidy One of the best ways in which to keep on top of your company’s stock is being able to make sure you can access any product you need at all times. To start with, you should install lots of shelving to make the most out of any space you have. Try and group your products into different categories; for example, if you sell clothes these could be grouped into different garment types such as tops, skirts, or shoes. Once you’ve organized your stock room, it’s important to keep it organized at all times. When you restock the shelves or add new lines of stock, it’s important that you keep to the same system. It’s also important that you keep this room clean and tidy, so there are no obstacles getting in the way of you and your stock. One of the major problems that could obstruct your ability to do this is all the cardboard and plastic packaging that all of your stock will be delivered in. Once these boxes are opened to gain access to your stock, it’s important that the packaging is disposed of in an equally organized manor. The best way to do this is with recycling baler machines, which not only reduce the size of the waste but compact it into one manageable bale. Without this, you could either end up with a large recycling bin in your stock room, or even worse—lots of unwanted cardboard left on the floor or the shelves.  Try to predict trends When you’re trying to predict how much stock you’ll need in order to get through a certain sales period, it’s important to recognize any trends you’ve previously had throughout your years of selling. For example, if you’re a garden center you’ll probably sell lots of outdoor furniture in the summer months but less in the winter months. The opposite would be true for Christmas trees. Some trends will be a lot less obvious than these examples, so make sure you review all of the information to make sure you’re increasing your stock levels at the right times. That way, you’ll know you won’t run out of a particular product at the specific time that everyone wants to buy it. Check the real stock levels against the calculated ones It’s highly likely that you’ll keep track of your stock by updating a spreadsheet when you buy new products and when you sell them. Whilst this is an efficient way of keeping track of your stock, it might not always be entirely accurate. It’s important to regularly check your stock numbers manually and correct any incorrect data on the spreadsheet. Issues such as stock getting damaged or lost, or even a typo on the document could all result in incorrect calculations compared to your actual stock, which could lead to confusion when you go looking for stock that might not actually...
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Does Your Business Need a Facility Manager?

Does Your Business Need a Facility Manager?
You’re probably not losing any sleep over facility management if your business fits into one small office. But, if you plan on growing your business, your small office will eventually grow into a whole building. This is where facility management comes in. The job of a facility manager is to ensure a well-organized environment in which you, your team, and your whole business can thrive. According to Transparency Market Research, the North American facilities management market will be worth about $340 billion by the end of 2024. So, facility management services are not something you should underestimate. Read on : Optimoroute has come out with a resourceful article on Route Optimization Software that sheds light on creating efficient transport plans using app or software to cut costs, save time, and utilize resources.Why Use Route Optimization Software? The Basics of Facility Management Facility management is a profession that focuses on utilizing a company’s buildings and equipment in a way that offers the best value. Facility maintenance is just one part of facility management. Strategic facility management ensures functionality, productivity, and safety in the built environment. Facility management is also key to ensuring that your company’s buildings and equipment comply with existing legal requirements. If you are wondering if or when you should hire a facility manager, here are some telltale signs: Your Maintenance Costs Are Escalating As your business grows, so will your maintenance costs. But, if these costs start running down your company, you have a problem. Some common money-wasters are likely to blame If you can’t figure out why your servicing and repair costs are increasing each month. These can include unused office space, wasteful stocking of spare parts and inventory, and under-utilisation or abuse of existing equipment. According to a 2013 report published by Wired, the U.S. had added about 2 billion sq. ft. of office space to its existing stock over the previous 30 years. Today’s mobile workforce doesn’t require so much space. The way you manage maintenance personnel and other staffing expenses also has an impact on your bottom line. The costs quickly pile up if you frequently have to call in heating engineers, electricians, plumbers, and other contractors. When you are operating in multiple locations, or have a very large facility, it’s hard to keep track of all maintenance tasks. Many business owners are in the habit of tracking everything manually. This can get messy really quickly. Moreover, if this is something you don’t have experience with, you can’t know whether the maintenance workers are carrying out their tasks properly. This is why facility managers rely on facility management software. Such tools allow them to make sure that every contractor and maintenance employee is doing the work they are being paid for. You Need to Expand Your Facilities to Accommodate Growth Let’s say that your business is expanding and you need additional storage space for your data. To handle the growing needs of your company, you need to build an effective data centre infrastructure. Naturally, this is a huge investment, and you don’t want to bite off more than you can chew. A facility manager can help make sure your new data centre can handle the evolution of your company. Using their experience, they can vet and hire a data centre construction firm. Their job would also be to manage the service contract you have with the firm, help ensure data centre security, and manage periodic upgrades. Even though your facility manager may not be an authority on the subject, they will know how to find and work with people who are. A good facility manager knows how to take care of quality control when engaging...
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Types of Plant Layout and Advantages

Types of Plant Layout and Advantages
Types of Plant Layout Layouts can be classified into the following categories: Process Layout Product Layout Fixed Position Layout Combination Layout Group Layout Become a Product Manager | Learn the Skills & Get the Job The most complete course available on Product Management. 13+ hours of videos, activities, interviews, & more Process Layout Process layouts are found primarily in job shops, or firms that manufacture customized, low-volume products that may require different processing requirements and sequences of operations. Process layouts are facility configurations in which operations of a similar nature or function are grouped together. As such, they occasionally are referred to as functional layouts. Their purpose is to process goods or provide services that involve a variety of processing requirements. Process layouts are also quite common in non-manufacturing environments. Examples include hospitals, colleges, banks, auto repair shops, and public libraries. Process Layout Advantages: Better machine utilization Highly flexible in allocating personnel and equipment because general purpose machines are used. Diversity of tasks for personnel Greater incentives to individual worker Change in Product design and process design can be incorporated easily More continuity of production in unforeseen conditions like breakdown, shortages, absenteeism Process Layout Disadvantages: Increased material handling Increased work in process Longer production lines Critical delays can occur if the part obtained from previous operation is faulty Routing and scheduling pose continual challenges This is a typical store layout of Walmart: Product Layout Product layouts are found in flow shops (repetitive assembly and process or continuous flow industries). Flow shops produce high-volume, highly standardized products that require highly standardized, repetitive processes. In a product layout, resources are arranged sequentially, based on the routing of the products. This type of layout is generally used in systems where a product has to be manufactured or assembled in large quantities. In product layout the machinery and auxiliary services are located according to the processing sequence of the product without any buffer storage within the line itself. Plant Layout of Coca-Cola: Product Layout Advantages: Low material handling cost per unit Less work in process Total production time per unit is short Low unit cost due to high volume Less skill is required for personnel Smooth, simple, logical, and direct flow Inspection can be reduced Delays are reduced Effective supervision and control Product Layout Disadvantages: Machine stoppage stops the line Product design change or process change causes the layout to become obsolete Slowest station paces the line Higher equipment investment usually results Less machine utilization Less flexible Two types of lines are used in product layouts: paced and unpaced. Paced Lines: Paced lines can use some sort of conveyor that moves output along at a continuous rate so that workers can perform operations on the product as it goes by. For longer operating times, the worker may have to walk alongside the work as it moves until he or she is finished and can walk back to the workstation to begin working on another part (this essentially is how automobile manufacturing works). Unpaced Lines: On an unpaced line, workers build up queues between workstations to allow a variable work pace. However, this type of line does not work well with large, bulky products because too much storage space may be required. Also, it is difficult to balance an extreme variety of output rates without significant idle time. Fixed Position Layout A fixed-position layout is appropriate for a product that is too large or too heavy to move. For example, battleships are not produced on an assembly line. Other fixed-position layout examples include construction (e.g., buildings, dams, and electric or nuclear power plants), shipbuilding, aircraft, aerospace, farming, drilling for oil, home repair, and automated car washes. THE A...
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