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How do I ensure certain materials are not used?

Discussion in 'Manufacturing and Related Processes' started by Nikki, May 17, 2018.

  1. Nikki

    Nikki Well-Known Member

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    I am looking for ideas on how to ensure our employees don’t grab and use the wrong materials.


    We have some customer supplied materials here. There is a big chance, we have the same grade of materials sitting here that we own. There have been issues with employees grabbing our own stuff, vs the customer owned stuff.


    We have a Customer Supplied sticker on the side – but it is the same color and size as our Move to Stock stickers. The guys just don’t seem to pay attention.


    Other issues – if a grade of material is discontinued or produced in a new location – we want to ensure it doesn’t get accidently used – so people are putting these materials in our non-conforming area and labeling them with “see So-n-So for permission”.


    My boss has challenged me to figure out a way to keep these “good” materials down in inventory (or in the customer supplied area), but make it so they don’t get used accidently.


    I figured big bright flashy labels on all sides of the materials may help. Besides that, I am a loss.


    We have an inventory specialist – but he doesn’t always pull ALL of the materials. Sometimes the guys have to do it at night.


    Any thoughts would be much appreciated.
     
  2. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    OK Nikki, I believe you're asking the wrong people, here. How about getting the guys/girls together, bring in Jimmy Johns and facilitate a brain storming session? They'll come up with a solution and, most importantly, they will make it work because they own it...
     
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  3. Serious Man

    Serious Man Active Member

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    I guess, people take these materials for production.
    So, if you have MRP with scanner as interface, best solution is merge process of start of production/post process product labelling with scanning incoming material labels.
    You can not start production/print label for products after process without scanning label for materials.
    When scanned label "says" it is customer material, not FIFO picked material, system wont allow starting machine, printing labels for product after process.
    People start to care as otherwise they can not use material they pick as they want..
    For analogue material control there is no good solution.
    You can politely ask people to respect your procedures or implement additional very strict inspection/audit to check constantly what people pick.
     
  4. RoxaneB

    RoxaneB Moderator Staff Member

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    Some things that come to my mind include:
    1. Folks probably know what they should/shouldn't do. No one wakes up with the intention to deliberately mess up (I hope!). Explaining why it's important to use only the correct parts is important...explain the consequences/impact when they don't (loss of business, loss of customer, loss of job, loss of profit).
    2. I'll be facilitating some focus groups in the near future with staff who operationally "get" why things need to be done, yet we continue to lose money in this area. The idea is to have them drill down to why the errors are happening and have them come up with solutions. I'll then have them put the solutions on an effort/impact matrix before showing them which solutions fall into quick wins, major projects, fill-in-jobs, and thankless tasks. Quick wins will be our top priority to consider for implementation. Thankless tasks will need to be stopped. The remaining two will be looked at only once the quick wins are implemented.
    3. Segregate the components in such a way that the only ones they can access are the ones that should be used at that point in time. This presumes, however, you have a batch manufacturing process in place and blocks of product being made are either for that customer (or not for that customer).
    4. Visual management. Colours. Tags. Stickers. Paint. You could even go to the extreme measure of, if the part is large enough, tagging the ones that belong to you so that when they're used, the tag has to follow the product down the line and someone verifies that the part was used appropriately. No tag could imply that a customer part was used on the product when it shouldn't have been. Or, if it's the customer's product, the presence of a tag could mean that your part was used when it should not have been. Extra cost and rather "police mentality", but sometimes we need to go this route as a first step towards establishing a culture
     
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