Not everyone within an organization needs to know every detail about its operations to fulfill their duties. But to be completely effective, each management level needs real-time access to data that will enable them to plan and execute, and make the decisions and adjustments that will prevent disconnects to the feedback loop and keep the operation functioning effectively and profitably.
As pointed out by our Advisory Board member Steven Boeder, Director of the Erdman Center for Operations and Technology Management at the University of Wisconsin School of Business and a former plant manager himself, manufacturing companies that digitize using data and messaging will come out ahead of their competitors. Real-time data collection provides immediate access to specific information needed by every level of your management team without requiring sorting through all the accumulated data.
The production supervisor receives questions and alerts directly from operators without them leaving their stations and is focused on the specific things happening “right now” that need attention. Supervisors can then instantly respond to those operators to keep them productive. Digitization not only speeds messages between the two, but also lets each send photos or documents to further clarify the message.
The operations manager’s overview needs to be broader. They need to know quickly where there are slowdowns, breakdowns or anticipated problems like material or labor supply shortages across all production lines. Digitization gives access to summary activity data across all production lines, giving the supervisor the “big picture” of productivity to help ensure the organization is on target to achieve its goals.
The executive level within the company needs the broadest view of operational productivity, safety and the likelihood of meeting company production and profitability goals. That information comes from access to dashboards showing all operational areas of the company and their current status, including productivity data, delivery projections, financial and personnel data.
The key to efficiency is sometimes described as seeing only what you need to see and doing only what you need to do. When the data produced and the messaging needed throughout an operation are digitized, each production worker has access to the input information he/she needs and each management level has at its fingertips the specific information it needs to maintain company efficiency and profitability.
We would like to hear your input on this critical subject. Please comment below and tell us how having more employee data would increase your company’s productivity.
Founder & CEO