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Using Poka Yoke Or Mistake Proofing

Dealing with manufacturing mistakes can cost your company hundreds or thousands of dollars a year. It is important to look into programs and tools that will help you to reduce the mistakes or to completely eliminate them. Human error may be causing a great deal of your manufacturing defects but in the majority of cases it may also be caused from the machinery or faulty planning. When you look for ways in which you can implement a new system that deals more with preventing errors, you can easily save money and reduce waste. This is where Poka Yoke comes in as it's tool used in manufacturing plants to help employees learn how to identify wastes and errors and to suggest ways in which to improve. If they are able to identify the issues and improve them quickly, it will save money and huge headache for everyone.

What makes Poka Yoke such a beneficial program for many companies is the ability you have to identify problems and to have employees feel empowered as they have more control over their jobs and their ability to focus on mistake-proofing strategies. This is a great way to give responsibility to your employees as they will be able to see that anyone can have power to be part of the system and that they are also essential in helping the company to grow and expand. When people are trained and then really given trust by the company, it helps their confidence level to soar and it's one of the great things you can do to create a company that is able to have satisfied and successful employees.

The goal is to expose the mistakes that you see. You want to have your employees aware of their jobs and to help them become more aware of mistakes and to act quickly on fixing the mistakes. When they see a problem in their line, they should report it and brainstorm ways in which it could be fixed. This empowers them to know that they really do have control over their section and they have the ability to make solid decisions that will aid in furthering the company. What it really comes down to is having "presence of mind" all the time so employees are always aware of their job and the surroundings. They need to constantly be thinking of ways in which they can rectify mistakes and to prevent them in the future.

Poka Yoke is just one aspect of lean manufacturing that your company needs to carefully consider implementing. It can be used at just about any stage in the manufacturing process to aid in offering positive results. There are errors that can be made at any step in the process but when you have correct orientation, you can easily see the errors before they are completely surfaced. This will be able to give you proper execution of your goals and to ensure that you are going to continue providing only the best to your customers.

There are 3 main types of Poka Yoke that are commonly used in detecting errors and focusing on mistake proofing your company:
1. Contact method. This is the method that allows you to identify the defects of products based on the way it looks. You may have issues that are easy to see as the color or shape of the product does not match correctly.
2. Fixed value. With this method you will have mistakes that are identified by one of your operators. They know what the machinery should be doing and what it is not doing correctly.
3. Motion. With this one you will be able to see that the appropriate steps in the process have not been made and this leads to errors.

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