Manage Workflow and the Local Optima Problem

It is a very widely held belief in business that each station in a production line should be working as hard as it can in order to maximise its efficiency. This might be a car assembly line or an accountant’s office processing tax returns using several different stages in the accounting process.  In other words, each stage is working at its Local Optimum.  Generations of Cost Accountants have encouraged this and spend endless amounts of time trying to split, for example, the cost of electricity over each work stage in the production cycle. This is probably seriously flawed thinking.  Blue Belt


Cost of Over and Under Stocking

In a manufacturing or retail environment, having too much inventory of products your customers don’t want and/or too little inventory on hand of what products your customers do want will cost you money and, consequently, profit.  Many service businesses also have inventory even if it is items like stationary incidental to their main operation.  This article  shows you why under and over stocking costs and how to reduce the damage.

C2.4.7 Cost Reduction – Reduce Inventory Cost

Does your business rely on inventory? Then there are quite substantial savings to be made with improved inventory management. Reduce inventory cost and reap the benefits. This comes from two directions: Reduce the total Inventory you hold. Thereby reducing the amount of Working Capital tied up in Inventory. Reduce your debt and associated interest charges. […]

SM2.11 80/20 Inventory Management

If inventory is something you have to manage in your business, the The Amazing 80/20 Rule Tool can have a powerful impact on Profit and Cashflow.

This is a Yellow Belt article.

Importance of Small Batches Tool

There are merits to reducing the size of the batches you manufacture and/or hold in stock at any point in time.  This might sound counter-intuitive because of the oft-quoted ‘economies of scale’ and the time cost of pulling down tool set-ups and changing them to manufacture another project.  But, in the words of the song; “it ain’t necessarily so!” Learn the importance of small batches.

How Kanban Improves Work Flow

Kanbans are a tool for structuring how work flows into the work-in-progress queues so that workers do not get overloaded and can use their time most effectively. Kanbans, and variations on them, are widely used in software projects (e.g. Scrum and Agile) and manufacturing (e.g. Lean and Six Sigma). Blue Belt

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