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How to incorporate flexible manufacturing into your existing system

Incorporating a type of manufacturing system into your existing system can be a challenge.After all, we get used to doing things one way and even though it may be better to make a change, we resist that which is unfamiliar.Incorporating flexible manufacturing into your existing system is an excellent way to handle the frequent occurrence of unexpected changes.

Flexible manufacturing systems will differ from company to company.But the basic idea of flexible manufacturing is that you have the ability to use the same machines to produce new products in the manufacturing process or that you use routing flexibility to assign certain machines with performing a single task as part of the whole process of the system.Because each manufacturing system is different and the operators and employees of manufacturing firms have different training, ability and leadership skills, the steps of incorporating flexible manufacturing into your existing system are not going to be the same for everyone.

So below you will find general suggestions for incorporating flexible manufacturing into your existing system as well as the possible benefits of doing so.

- When you are thinking about how to incorporate flexible manufacturing into your existing system, think of what you can do as a company to help to counter changes that will occur both in the internal and external environment of the company.

- You must have a way of measuring current flexibility levels of your manufacturing company if you are to know whether or not your implementations are providing you with any kinds of results.Models for measuring the specific goals that your company is trying to achieve by the flexible manufacturing implementation will let you know if you are on the right track as far as improvements to the outlook of the company are concerned.

- In addition to measuring the current and after implementation levels of flexibility internally, measures of the economic effects on your company must also be taken into consideration.Again, current measurements should be taken and projected changes after the implementation of flexible manufacturing solutions should reflect a positive change if the implementation is to be deemed successful.

- The main advantages of a flexible manufacturing system are that you can achieve high flexibility in managing manufacturing resources in order to manufacture a new product. For example, time and effort can be spared as a flexible manufacturing system is often run by a central computer.

- The best place to start thinking of incorporating a flexible manufacturing system is in an area of your manufacturing process where production can be automated.Automation in the flexible manufacturing system leads to mass production and therefore increase productivity is achieved.

- The flexible manufacturing system should also be considered for areas where preparation time needs to be reduced.Flexible manufacturing time in terms of preparing new products is typically shorter while quality is improved because automation insures a consistent performance.

- Labor costs can be saved by the use of flexible manufacturing so the areas in your manufacturing process that seem to absorb a large portion of funds are also excellent places to consider starting your flexible manufacturing implementation.

Other tips and warnings

Flexible manufacturing is not necessarily a cure-all for all of your automated problems.Nor should there be an impermeable connection between increasing flexibility in the manufacturing system and increasing productivity in the system as well.Different manufacturing organizations require their own unique mix of incorporated manufacturing systems in order to have their own niche in the economy and strive as an independent corporation.Reviewing the other types of manufacturing systems and the benefits that different methods provide is the best advice to developing your manufacturing company's own unique combination of success.

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