7 Reasons Single Unit Processing Benefits Your Bottom Line
1. Improves Quality and Fewer Defects in Manufacturing
Batch production is beneficial in certain instances, but the risk of defects is significantly higher since more inventory needs to be moved, counted, stored, and picked. With a one-piece-flow process, defects or quality concerns only impact a single part, not the entire process. Therefore, plant operators aren’t required to dedicate man-hours for testing other material in the same production run for quality issues. Rather, operators can trace back workflow for the single piece and determine corrective actions to ensure the problem won’t reoccur.
2. Reduces Inventory
Each operation will only need to produce what is needed by the next operator. When followed properly and leveraging the capabilities of automated material handling, the process will eliminate any chance of falling behind, therefore avoidings delays.
3. Less Space Required
As inventory levels are reduced, less space and manpower is required to manage (receive, count, stock, store, pick and delivery) it. One-piece flow results in work cells with optimized equipment layout so a single operator can oversee many pieces of the equipment with minimal motion.
4. Enhances Overall Manufacturing Flexibility
Less inventory on the floor will allow lead times to drop, thereby providing more time to react to customer orders.
5. Makes it Easier to Identify Future Kaizen
Defects and WIP inventories will decrease, while issues on the shop floor will become visibly noticeable. If problems relate to task time or WIP, for instance, it will quickly become apparent and changes can be made immediately to address them.
6. Ensures a Safer Work Environment
Less inventory means less clutter, which provides opportunity to improve layout of equipment in the work station and the layout of the cells.
7. Improves Employee Morale
Production problems are identified immediately, giving workcell operators more ownership in their production area.