manufacturing articles business management businesses Marketing sales Technology Business finance Lean Manufacturing small business Investing articles employee health

How to reduce manufacturing variations and defects

Small defects and manufacturing variations can become costly for any company. Several companies have begun implementing different lean manufacturing approaches to reduce manufacturing variations and defects. Some of the common methods include Six Sigma, Total Quality Control, and the 5 "S" Methodology.

Six Sigma
Six sigma was developed by Motorola and has been used by other notable companies like GE. The six sigma method was developed to remove defects and variations in manufacturing. It uses a series of quality management methods to implement the changes. These quality management methods are known as "master black belts, black belts, and green belts." Each company will have different employees that are trained within their different sector. When a company implements Six Sigma to reduce defects and product variation, they will follow the DMAIC or DMADV method.

The DMAIC method is defined as:

  • Define project goals and existing processes

  • Measuring of the existing processes

  • Analyze the data to determine the cause-and-effect relationships

  • Improve the current process based on the data

  • Control any deviations before product defects occur

The DMADV method is defined as:
  • Define project goals that meet the demands of the customer

  • Measure CTQs (critical to quality characteristics) and risks

  • Analyze design alternatives to select a new design

  • Design details for the product and have several simulations to test the design

  • Verify the design and implement the production phase

While six sigma has been effective for many companies, there are other manufacturing programs that can help you reduce manufacturing variations and defects.

Total Quality Control

Total quality control or total quality management (TQM) works toward creating defect-free products by placing an emphasis on management roles. If management is able to lead the company in quality improvement, they will help their staff members find ways to create products that satisfy the needs of the customers. There are 3 main aspects of TQM:
  • Reliability

  • Maintainability

  • Safety

TQM helps companies realize that it is a company-wide approach to reducing defects and eliminating product variations. Mangers will begin to look at the processes within the company and determine if machinery needs to be replaced or if employees need to adopt a new level of performance. Quite often TQM is known as a team effort because it is focused on building relationships within the company to create a healthy working environment. When employees have respect for their coworkers and appreciate their jobs, they are less-likely to have mistakes. The small defects will stop happening and you will save money on production costs.

The 5 "S" Methodology

Another popular lean manufacturing method is the 5 "S" method. This method is based on 5 Japanese words that begin with the letter `S'. This method helps companies learn how to organize their workspace to make it more productive. One of the first aspects of the 5 S method is to tidy the factory. Each employee needs to have an organized workspace so they can become more efficient with their job responsibilities.

The workplace must be arranged after a manner for everyone to understand. This may include using storage bins and other things to help them find the tools they need. The factory must also remain as clean as possible. Having a clean workspace will help employees remain focused because they will not be distracted. Another important part of the 5 S method is to create standardized procedures. This will apply to recycling and other things that can be re-used in the plant. The final piece of the 5 S method is known as progress. All employees will be given time to input their ideas about the method to determine if it is working and if it is reducing defects and product variations.

FREE: Get More Leads!
How To Get More LeadsSubscribe to our free newsletter and get our "How To Get More Leads" course free via email. Just enter your first name and email address below to subscribe.
First Name *
Email *

Get More Business Info
Sponsored Links
Recent Articles


Copyright 2003-2020 by - All Rights Reserved
Privacy Policy, Terms of Use