Industrial fastening products can be anything from screws and nails to specific metal connectors, but they all serve a purpose. However, getting them to this purpose is the hard part since there are so many things that can go wrong along the way.
One method of combating this is the Kanban system, a method of improving production efficiency and streamlining the entire process without slowing things down behind the scenes. But how does it actually work? Here are some simple things to consider if you are interested in trying it.
What does Kanban do?
Kanban is a technique related to tracking, managing, and understanding a single project or process in a visual format, usually alongside other projects that are directly related to it. This is usually done with a Kanban board, a column-based tracking system where every column relates to one stage of a project, and each row represents a certain item, shipment, goal, etc.
The main benefit of Kanban is that it breaks the entire system into smaller, easier-to-understand stages. Instead of having a binary change between “in progress” and “complete,” a Kanban board might have stages like “testing,” “ordering,” “awaiting approval,” or any other stage that is necessary for the process to work.
How does Kanban help?
In most cases, Kanban makes it incredibly easy to narrow down areas where there might be consistent supply issues or other setbacks. By breaking the entire supply chain into chunks that are updated as they are completed, a business owner can see where the ‘flow’ is disrupted, then try to figure out what is causing an issue in that area specifically.
Even on a smaller scale, having a decent Kanban chart/table can make a massive difference to a person’s understanding of the process that they are part of. It tells them where they are in the chain, how long the delay has been leading up to them, and whether or not there are delays after they have completed their part.
Of course, having a Kanban supply chain or management system means tailoring it to the business. That means that companies with this kind of system often modify the way that their entire setup works, trying to find a balance between management and simplicity that keeps efficiency high without requiring entirely new setups to manage it all.
Being able to produce the right resources at the right time is important for keeping any production line going and can be vital to any kind of business. Because of this, making sure that you have a properly balanced cycle of ordering and using new materials is useful for more than just one reason.
First of all, this cuts down on the storage space you need to use and prevents perishable items from going unused before they expire. It also means that production lines do not have an awkward surplus of one material but not another.
Once you can identify flaws in your logistics with a Kanban system, you can resolve them and make some fairly major changes to your logistical options. With something like industrial fastening products (even just basic nails and bolts), finding out that certain nails keep being delayed due to packaging issues can be the first step on some major overhauls.
Even if nothing needs to be changed, just knowing your overall logistical pattern (and letting employees see where they are in the chain) can make contacting the right people very easy. If there is an issue with screws not being delivered on time, you do not have to call a sequence of people down the chain to figure out what happened.
One of the biggest problems that some industrial fastening products companies encounter is the deliveries that they have to make. Warehouses full of boxes of nails, screws, bolts, and connectors can become hard to navigate, and it can be hard to change outdated systems without throwing everything off.
Kanban solves this problem by integrating on top of whatever plan you are already following. You do not need to physically move the storage shelving to make the system work, and if you do it correctly, you can rely on the Kanban supply chain to cover any setbacks while you rearrange or optimize warehouses and storage areas.