25th April, 2016

In the factory, downtime can be one of the biggest issues production line managers have to face and
prevention is crucial to protect both business and reputation.

We’ve put together a list of five common line issues and how to overcome them, to help keep your line one step ahead of the pack!

Reduce opportunity for error

Operator and team miscommunication can have costly implications on the product line and negatively affect reputation with suppliers. To tackle this, staff should adhere to a best practice policy, be cross-trained to operate various machines within the factory and line processes should be simplified as much as possible. This approach will reduce potential opportunities for human error, which could lead to costly product recalls.

Another way to combat this would be to automate and link job data with barcodes, so an operator can easily scan a pre-programmed job sheet, reducing opportunity for error.

Don’t get caught short!

Ensure that production line staff regularly monitor consumable usage patterns, so that downtime can be prevented with a well-measured minimum stock level.

High-quality consumables will also give you complete confidence in running a fast and efficient line, with reliable and clear prints. Low-quality consumables can cause damage to electronic components, lead to poor print quality and reduce readability of important variable data.

Don’t let the dust (… or water) settle on production

It is important to invest in the appropriate protective covers for your equipment to ensure that dust and moisture does not cause machinery to malfunction and affect line performance.

It is also advisable to have seasonal equipment routinely checked to make sure lines are capable of operating at full capacity and to prevent unnecessary stoppage time after long periods of inactivity.

Integration is key

Running a variety of complex machines on a single line can often be problematic and result in a range of integration and communication issues.

Ensure that an intelligent networking solution capable of managing native and non-native line systems is installed, this will help to streamline operations, make it easier to manage jobs, makes it much easier to train operators and most importantly, reduce the probability of costly errors.

Better starts with fewer parts

Machines with fewer wear parts are less likely to require constant ongoing maintenance as they have less moving apparatus, this will also reduce downtime and regular repair costs associated with machines with a higher amount of replaceable parts.

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