Employing a proven framework, manufacturers around the world have been adopting DFT for over three decades with transformational results. Utilizing tools such as Product Synchronizations, Sequence of Events, Mixed-Model Process Matrixes along with DFT Operation Methods sheets companies are able to establish mixed-model flow lines and resources that have the capability to adjust product volume and mix every day aligned to actual demand rather than planned or forecast orders delivering repeatable and predictable response to the customer. Employing a proven framework, manufacturers around the world have been adopting DFT for over three decades with transformational results. Utilizing tools such as Product Synchronizations, Sequence of Events, Mixed-Model Process Matrixes along with DFT Operation Methods sheets companies are able to establish mixed-model flow lines and resources that have the capability to adjust product volume and mix every day aligned to actual demand rather than planned or forecast orders delivering repeatable and predictable response to the customer.
DFT mixed-model flow lines are designed to be balanced to support agility and flexibility. Through design, potential for over-production is eliminated, flow is established reducing lead times and thereby directly reducing WIP and Finished Goods inventories.
In machine intensive environments, unique tools determine mathematically defined minimum run quantities enabling high setup machines to produce closer to actual demand, while facilitating production of a greater number of product types each day. Consequently, machine environments become more agile and adaptive to customer requirements while at the same time freeing up capacity, significantly reducing quality exposure and the working capital position of the business.
Flow lines and machine cells are established to process multiple products that would have previously been manufactured on product specific assembly lines or machine cells that lacked flow and balance. Specific tools are used to determine the optimal product mix based on commonality of processes, times, and materials etc. while aggregating demand facilitating the mixed-model design and management of a flow line that will accommodate changes in mix and volume on a daily basis. Seasonal or cyclic fluctuations in customer demand will be less severe in impact with a wider range of products being manufactured on the same line.
DFT requires, and puts in place, necessary operator training to promote certification to at least three operations on the flow line. This flexibility allows staffing to be calculated and adjusted based on actual daily rates of customer orders. Adjusting staffing on a daily basis and utilizing flexible operators, the DFT flow line can accommodate changes in demand without any redesign of the production environment.
Flow-based metrics are used to measure performance. On a daily basis, supervisors are provided an hourly Flow Rate target to attain to ensure customer demand is achieved. During each hour, the line is measured against planned Flow Rate and appropriate corrective actions applied to ensure the planned daily rate is achieved. Overall performance through a month is defined through measurement of Linearity for each line and an entire facility. Linearity provides a business with the ability to closely measure how effective the production environment is at meeting plan and hence the ability of the business to respond to the customer. By transitioning to Flow-based metrics a business can ensure that performance measurement is aligned to the Demand Driven goals of the organization.
DFT will enhance profitability by leveraging increased speed and response. Working capital reductions of 41% on average and 49% reduction in average lead times are achieved through the capability of DFT flow lines and the creation of balance and flow. Average improvements of 8% on Cost of Goods (COGS) are attained as a result of significant productivity gains and a focus on flexible employees. Customer satisfaction is seen to improve on average by 9% through a consistent, predictable, repeatable response and improved on-time deliveries. Furthermore, a DFT organization can achieve greater competitive advantage and increased market share realized through the capability to manufacture any product based on actual customer demand rather than a forecast. Non-DFT competing organizations have few options available to them; they can tie up more working capital with additional inventory, increase levels of overtime, or increase capacity.
DFT will impact your business with improved customer satisfaction, compressed lead times, reduction in working capital and reduced Cost of Goods Sold, elevating the business to become a market leader.