"If the blind lead the blind, both shall fall in the ditch."
- Jesus Christ -
This month has been a roller coaster ride for the production department of the company. Not really an exciting ride but more of a gruesome domino effect destroying the momentum of the production, or better yet destroying the morale of the workers?
I don't see it that way, neither the few employees who know the real deal of the situation nor the few laborers who are in the right mind to understand what is really happening in the moment.
So what was the quake that hit and shaken the department?
Usually, March kicks off the start of the lean season for our product. This is also the time when the Finished Goods (FG) Warehouse is trying to recover their stocks in order to stabilize the goods that is resulted from the peak season's demand. Unexpectedly, the peak season's demand is stable until this month which is a good indication of stable market and higher sales. Good for the company and hopefully good for the employees!
As it turns out, the FG has a low buffer stocks which resulted to a hand and mouth process of delivering goods. Worst that it gets, incomplete and delayed delivery has been observed. So profit loss is expected but for sure it's just minimal.
What were the contributory events that lead to this?
(1) The most controversial issue is the stringent actions implemented by the Quality Assurance/Quality Control Department in observing and checking product specifications, from random to 100% checking.
So, where are the conflicts here?
70% rejection on the finished covers was observed. 70% for repair and a time-consuming preventive measure. Production output went down but assured better quality.
Sounds really alarming, huh? Does this action contribute to the delays?
I don't think so.
The QC/QA is just doing their job. The department is just following the SOPs of their process, conforming to the standard.
(2) The counter-act of the Production : the so-called "ZERO TOLERANCE" of the QC/QA. The department is questioning the possibility of this idea.
When I heard about this, I was puzzled. Is it really necessary to implement a zero tolerance to our materials? Not until, I got the point of the implementing department.
It is about mindset.
If you keep in mind that you have to ace an examination, it is logical to study hard. So that when you are not able to perfect the exam, for sure, you still have high grades. It is like aiming for 100 but just landed little closely to 95 or 97. You got the point?
If the workers keep in mind that a zero-tolerance is needed, they will work carefully and act responsibly so as to conform to the dictated specifications in order to avoid rejection and repair. If they miss the zero-tolerance, for sure no worries, they land on the 2-5% allowable tolerance.
Is this a contributory factor?
I don't think so.
(3) Blame it to the system! Blame it to the culture!
This is the biggest challenge.
At present, the system shows ineffectiveness. Poor production planning. Misinterpret data. Wrong judgment. Mislead actions.
I will just elaborate this on my succeeding posts. I still need good evaluation.
While I am writing this post, immediate action has been done. The Plant Supervisor was relieved of his position. Additional manpower was introduced. The Plant Manager is now in-charge. Changes are at hand. Well as for me, I need to double time with my projects.