“Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better.” – Pat Riley, Former NBA Coach/Player
How does a company achieve operational excellence? At Swiss-Tech, we believe it stems from a cycle of ongoing assessment, planning, and action…but it doesn’t happen overnight. This process requires intentional, long-term dedication to improving multiple facets of your operations.
For us, there are four primary areas of focus to our approach.
1) Reducing Setup Times
By machine setup times, we are referring to the time it takes to prepare a particular piece of CNC equipment from machining one part to the next.
Ensuring our setup times are streamlined is extremely beneficial – not only in decreasing the overall run time for a single component but also in helping to reduce manufacturing costs.
We’ve taken meaningful strides to reduce setup times in several ways, including:
- Upgrading equipment for easier setup/teardown
- Investing in quick change tools for our machines
- Coordinating like-diameter parts back-to-back
- Optimizing run quantities to operate more efficiently
2) CNC Swiss Machine Optimization
Considering a variety of ways to optimize our CNC Swiss machinery has been another important step for us in achieving our desired level of operational excellence.
Upgrading our equipment has been critical to capacity growth, and a great deal of forecasting comes before any new investments are made. It’s vital to take a hard look at the quantities and types of parts we are producing at both the macro and micro level of our manufacturing floor.
A few metrics we are constantly tweaking for pique performance are:
- Efficient use of labor (unattended hours)
- Man-to-Machine ratio calculations (helps to determine when hiring additional team members is required)
- Scheduling planned maintenance to avoid unplanned downtime
One integrated tool that has helped us improve production traceability is our Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System.
Utilizing this powerful technology, we have streamlined our production and greatly enhanced our manufacturing efficiency while continuing to strategically add capacity and precision equipment upgrades year-over-year.
3) Building Relationships on a Basis of Performance
We actively protect the human elements of our business.
Although often placed on the back-burner within our industry, building authentic relationships with our employees, vendors, and (most of all) customers is one of our main priorities at Swiss-Tech.
After all, without the people we serve and work alongside each and every day, our company would cease to exist.
We have made a concerted effort to build and maintain relationships based on our performance by:
- Being transparent in our practices
- Creating and delivering value to our customers, ownership, and ourselves
- Valuing leadership, integrity, quality, accountability, and passion within our business culture
Learn more about how Swiss-Tech’s House is helping us achieve operational excellence.
4) Following DMAIC Principles
Swiss-Tech also subscribes to the process improvement principles known as DMAIC, which stand for:
Although not exclusively used with Six Sigma initiatives, you may recognize this data-driven cycle as one of the essential elements of the popular business tactic.
Overall, DMAIC methodology provides structure and focus to our improvement efforts and ensures challenges are addressed thoroughly and consistently. When it comes time to review and make changes to our processes, each stage mentioned above is required and occurs in the exact same order every time.
Operational Excellence at Swiss-Tech
“By doing these things, we have enabled ourselves to control production costs and continually improve our processes. This is a strong platform for operational excellence in a demanding industry, and our four-pronged approach plays an important role in helping us accomplish this.” – Frank Meiland, President at Swiss-Tech
If you’d like to learn more about how Swiss-Tech operates, feel free to request additional information online.
We also keep our 45,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facility tour-ready at all times and would love to show you around – whether you’re looking to buy from us…or not.
Give us a call to schedule a visit at 262-728-6363.