Why Visibility Matters In Manufacturing

Ravindra Ambegaonkar
October 6, 2022
4 Minutes Read
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The manufacturing business requires constant monitoring and control to achieve successful results. This is the reason why visibility is a crucial factor in your factory business. You need real-time visibility, regardless of the products you're handling and producing.

Visibility is essential in identifying errors, mitigating risks, and improving workflows. You can easily recognize the bottlenecks in your operation both in the short and long term. This will assist you in changing or improving your approach and production standards to rise above the competition.

That said, here are some viable reasons why your manufacturing business should have real-time visibility:

1) Product Quality Monitoring

Many manufacturers worldwide leverage technology to optimize their supply chains and workflows. For instance, you can use job shop management software to improve production planning and scheduling. Many other features and functions take advantage of the wide range of manufacturing tools. Such systems can combine and analyze a huge amount of data from a supply chain. Moreover, insights gained from these analytics can often reveal product quality and supplier performance trends that aren't apparent from individual inspections or audits.

Using tech tools will allow you to monitor your production and its quality. You can see the overall flow without physically visiting the plant's assembly line. In addition, you can use the data provided to determine whether there are things that need to be improved in the production. It also enables you to compare suppliers' goods and decide which ones need to be changed. By using such information, you can prioritize suppliers who perform well.

2) Ensure Overall Equipment Effectiveness

Overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) is one crucial aspect of a factory business. This metric evaluates an operation's productivity. When you maintain high visibility in the plant, you'll be able to witness which equipment and devices are falling behind the rest. You can decide to replace them or tweak them to improve operations.

Remember to implement the right technology to help you maintain your OEE, as some business owners take this for granted, which is one of the manufacturing mistakes they usually make. The OEE of manufacturers can be improved over time by increasing visibility and analyzing processes in real time through advanced visualizations.

3) Improve Speed n Manufacturing

Although it's not the top priority for many manufacturing plants, increasing production speed can improve efficiency. Fortunately, having visibility can yield this result. You don't need to wait for anyone to point you in the right direction when you make data-backed decisions about your supply chain.

When you can track and check the slow points in the processes, you can act immediately and accelerate the pace. After all, being agile and speedy with your production are smart ways to maximize outputs.

4) Helps Supplier Transactions To Become Autonomous

One obvious benefit of visibility in your manufacturing business is that clients and suppliers gain trust when supply chains become more visible. It’s now possible to empower suppliers to conduct self-inspections.

Suppliers will be responsible for ensuring their quality performance and meeting your business expectations. They can work on their own initiative without you constantly reminding them and following up on necessary improvements.

To foster relationships with your vendors and suppliers while maximizing your quality control budget, it's ideal to enable your suppliers to self-inspect. Remember to ensure they remain compliant with your business and the industry's standards.

5) Meets KPI Metrics Better

Having visibility in the manufacturing plant allows you to easily meet key performance index (KPI) metrics. Many manufacturers use KPIs to track plant performance. It can be difficult to meet these metrics if you are unaware of the performance of your manufacturing plant.

Manufacturing companies can stay on track and achieve more aggressive targets by visualizing their operations against KPIs. By improving visibility, manufacturers can see how metrics are being met and whether the targets should be increased or decreased to adjust to their actual operations.

6) Saves Manufacturing Costs

Any business would want to save on costs. High visibility allows you to check which areas in your operations can be modified to reduce expenses. For instance, you can prevent defective products from being shipped, thereby minimizing returns and increasing customer satisfaction. In addition, you can also save costs on quality control by conducting inspections before releasing the final outputs.

You can also reduce rush shipping costs by doing things right the first time. Keep in mind that when you ship defective products to your customers, you are responsible for expensive shipping costs. Lastly, you can improve your bottom line by ensuring that your customers are happy and satisfied with your products. In doing such actions, you can avoid unnecessary costs and also improve conversion rates.

7) Access To Necessary Data

Seeing every aspect of your supply chain gives you access to large amounts of data. And these data can be analyzed and studied as they’ll guide you to make informed decisions in the long run. It would be best to establish a data analytics team in your manufacturing company that can observe and dissect each point and detail found in your data silo. All these strategies will improve your supply chain management.

8) Meet Customer Demands Efficiently

Supply chains must be flexible to meet evolving customer needs. When you're not aware of how your production is performing, it will cause delays and hurdles, thus making it impossible to meet high demands. This means you're losing a lot of business opportunities and profits.

When your supply chain is fully transparent, you can determine what needs to be done to align it with customer needs. Furthermore, you'll be able to provide enough supply to meet demands, which means higher sales and revenue.

9) Reduce Manufacturing Waste And Downtime

Maintaining strong visibility in your business operations can reduce wasted resources and minimize downtime. Visualizing real-time production metrics can help reveal major problems on the factory floor. You'll be able to quickly identify where resources are being wasted. Regardless of how small it is, this can accumulate excessive costs over time. So, knowing it early on allows issues to be addressed before they escalate.

As for reducing downtime, you can also mitigate such instances when you can avoid the issues that trigger this. Manufacturers can use insights and analytics to plan for and prepare for downtime with better visibility.

Conclusion

There's a paradigm shift in technology, even for manufacturing industries today. There are many tips and practices to improve your production workflow, but having visibility is one key piece of advice. With all the reasons pointed out above, there's no denying the fact that visibility matters a lot in any manufacturing business.

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