Improve Manufacturing Productivity for Reduced Costs

Potential Value Gains – Productivity Improvements
Reduce downtime levels by more than 10%
Reduce WIP (Work In Progress) by more than 10%
Achieve WCM (World Class Manufacturing) levels of OEE
Drastically reduce overtime costs
Increase overall business profitability

High Levels of Downtime

Manufacturers are always looking for ways to improve productivity and increase output without compromising on quality. Inefficiencies such as downtime can be extremely costly, so knowing your current downtime status and having a goal for downtime improvements is the start of optimising manufacturing costs and efficiencies for manufacturing excellence. Scheduling production using historical performance data can lead to an increase in net operation time through efficiency-savings in planned downtime and change overs. Re-occurrences of unplanned downtime can flag up machinery and lack of process reliability, which need actionable attention.
Real-time information of production uptime, downtime and availability in the form of KPI (Key Performance Indicator) metrics such as OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness), TEEP (Total Effective Equipment Performance), MTTR (Mean Time to Repair), and ATTR (Actual Time to Repair) gives great visibility of the shop floor and the ability to have a positive effect on productivity levels.

Too much Work-in-Progress/WIP Reduction

Too much WIP (Work In Progress) can lead to costly production, bottlenecks, idle inventory and increased lead times. It’s important to have an initiative in place to reduce WIP on the factory floor and to set out achievable goals. Managing warehouse operations effectively will improve productivity, reduce WIP, improve throughput and support Continuous Improvement (CI) initiatives. Reducing the amount of WIP buffers or safety stock will improve On-Time, In-Full (OTIF) order performance to accelerate cycle times and productivity throughput.

Need more Production Capacity

Increasing capacity utilisation and getting more out of what you have can be achieved by leveraging existing assets and resources. Effective planning and scheduling ensures that production lines are working at maximum capacity and efficiency at all times, allowing manufacturers to measure and record factors which effect On Time, In Full (OTIF). Manufacturers are often concerned with how best to optimise production capacity based on existing capability and how to improve throughput capacity, increase productivity and decrease cost per unit. Accelerating throughput and improving capacity utilisation can be achieved by taking a closer look at how processes are performed and focusing on activities that will improve efficiency and reduce equipment downtime. For example having visibility of production orders on the shop floor will help to establish how best to improve planned and unplanned downtime, creating greater machine uptime, which will increase capacity and improve KPI metrics such as OEE. Measuring performance improvements will also help managers to justify potential investments in new systems, machinery, or more shop floor space to their key stakeholders.

Too much Overtime

Escalating overtime costs is a common operating challenge. Optimising the workforce in a demand centred way instead of a capacity utilisation approach can result in manufacturers better balancing workforce requirements and optimising labour costs. Reducing overtime expense can be a significant source of cost saving; resulting in reduced unit costs and improved productivity. Information and visibility into time and labour efficiency will give a clearer picture of employee efficiency and productivity, such as actual labour hours, overtime hours, productive vs idle time and more. It’s very important to be able to compare employee and plant performance between multiple plants and departments to see which product is produced most efficiently with the fewest hours of labour per unit, and more importantly to control global enterprise operations more effectively.


Complete visibility into profitability levels/metrics and whether you are meeting targets is key to the longevity of any business. Utilising people effectively and identifying the root causes of low productivity can be a painstaking task. You may think that employing too many staff is the cause of escalating operating costs, but in fact it’s the result of insufficient training or supply chain issues which is causing low productivity. Profitability is a key concern for CEOs and CFOs. Productivity has a direct impact on profitability and so enhancing productivity through operational activities such as; reducing downtime and overtime, reducing WIP, and increasing capacity to manage and reduce costs is a must. Higher productivity means more in terms of production capacity, which means higher sales margins for sustained profit growth.

Global & local

Knowledge of local site productivity improvement can aid the successful roll out of a global manufacturing enterprise improvement program. Visibility of single plant productivity is the first step, but if you have global operations the next step is to gain real-time visibility of productivity to benchmark and take control of the complete operations network. It’s imperative to have real-time information at your fingertips to compare plant productivity between global sites in order to establish which site is operating the most efficiently/profitably, and to make informed business decisions such as where to focus future improvement activities.

For further information about improving productivity please call us on 01274 599955 or email us here

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