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4 comments

What to Do – What to Do?

Posted March 27, 2009 7:47 AM

Hate the thought of loosing key workers to competitors, but can't stand paying for idle time? Downtime may be a great time to get to those projects and process assessments you never get around to when you're busy. What do you do with your downtime?

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#1

Re: What to Do – What to Do?

03/27/2009 11:29 AM

When there isn't any wood to cut, sharpen the bloody saw! <Splutter>

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#2

Re: What to Do – What to Do?

03/28/2009 1:12 AM

Same as you do when on 'Hold'. Maintain and Improve existing. Watch who finds something worthwhile to do. Can (DX, Deep Six) the rest. You won't miss a one of the slackers.

Down time on old sailing vessels was for making wood planes, chisels, etc.. Good time for safety/hazmat instruction, even in the office environment. Time for 'STAR', Stop,Think, Act, and Review classes. Review OSHA practices. Fire suppression, EMT, Safety, etc. can make a difference not only in employee morale, but the bottom line in insurance costs.

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#3

Re: What to Do – What to Do?

03/28/2009 5:04 AM

First analyse why there is downtime or idle time in your production. If it is possible, organize work in two parallel lines, where when there is idle time period for first line, work start on second line, and when idle time start for second line, work resume on first line. That way there would be no idle time, and same workers can work on both lines, regardless how many shifts you have. Of course, You have to be able to sell all products You make, but they would also be cheaper to produce. It would be fair to give little higher wages for such non-stop work then it is usual, at least half savings on production cost, IMHO......

That would stimulate workers to produce more, if the wages would be directly proportional to quantity produced. Sometimes just that measure, of making pay proportional to quantity produced would make workers to find the way to eliminate idle time. Just think of old workers and give them higher wages if job is physically strenuous, as they would probably produce less then fresh and young workers. But on some jobs experience would prevail and experienced worker would produce more, but still it is good to give them higher wages.

That would stimulate loyalty to company, and young workers would want to learn from older ones and their experience to be able that they produce more and therefore earn higher wages..........

If it is not possible to make two production lines, then other advices are good also, as this is perfect time for maintenance and repair, training or safety instructions.

Just it assumes that there are tools that are idle in idle time of workers, or there are machines waiting for work to resume. With two or more parallel production processes, You could have continuous cleaning, oiling and maintenance going from one line of production to next, and this would pay itself trough less breakdown time and less repair necessary.

I hope this would help You greatly, even if this is general advice applicable to any production.

You should give little more details next time so people would be able to give You better advices......

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#4

Re: What to Do – What to Do?

03/28/2009 10:13 AM

When the regular work is slow, I make process improvements. Software can always be improved, in fact I usually have sticky notes with change ideas plastered around my workstation. If there is any required training I also do that when work is slow. Think about any efficiency issues, and start a new project if necessary.

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