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Emptying the Ballast: How to Streamline a Manufacturing Business to Increase Efficiency

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As companies become more and more successful, they find that they also become heavy and unwieldy, unable to react quickly or as flexibly to challenges and sudden changes as they used to. This is because companies hire more people, have more assets and have more complicated processes than are necessary. To streamline companies and make them more effective, drastic measures are necessary. If not, companies will simply become deadweight, unable to deal with their own carcasses.

Re- Structure the Pipeline

Every manufacturing company has a pipeline, the hierarchy of employees all the way from workers on the floor to the CEO in his office. As companies become bigger and more promotions are called for, the executive board may find that the company becomes top heavy: too many directors, executives and managers have been appointed. More than is necessary for a company of your size and employee numbers. That way, there aren’t enough people to do the actual work. So restructure your company’s pipeline so that there are fewer bosses at the top and more people at the bottom – a pyramid. Do this every few years to make sure that the right people have been promoted and/ or fired.

Update the Technology

Every year, new technology is introduced to the field of manufacturing; erp software (Enterprise Resource Management) is one which is fast becoming indispensable to companies because it streamlines so many different things such as client relations, finances and resource management.

This allows employees to use technology to complete tasks that were previously done manually. Manufacturing ERP software is also a great way to get statistics on input, output etc. almost immediately which would usually take weeks to calculate by hand. Also check and install new technology that will make the production process smoother to conserve energy and manpower.

Clear Out the Warehouses

Once a year, do a massive ‘spring cleaning’ that will get rid of unnecessary raw material, old stock and useless assets that may accumulate. After upgrading production processes, you may no longer need manual presses; sell them on to a smaller company, or simply throw them away. Keeping junk in your warehouse that you no longer utilize or even need only increases your deadweight, and takes up space that can be better organized. If you overhaul office furniture; if you change raw material and you have loads of the old stock left over; and if you overproduce and is unable to sell, then a garage sale every year should do the trick. If not, call an auction house.