Posts from the ‘MANUFACTURING’ Category

We still like filling forms

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This is 2012 and we are still filling forms. At the doctors, at work, for credit, at banks, schools, colleges and probably even at play.

The least pardonable is at work. Inspire of the advances made on corporate databases we still seem to love entering data multiple times. We then check them, edit the, correct them. We get so engrossed in this and forget the ultimate goal.

Agile is a very popular document managing system. Why can’t we use it to generate the reports for us. All that we have to do it give the relevant input. As engineers we love to think that an expert system will not fit the needs. But all things we do fit a pattern.

Custom furniture is not custom any more if you break it down to the basic component and give it the 3 dimensions.

We thought the heavier the report the better the score. Is that still true in today’s world?

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Why do we have a shortage of Medical Device Design and Process Engineers?

I have been with the medical device industry for a decade. The decades before that was spent with heavy construction, automobiles, consumer goods on a host of interesting assignments.

Process engineers are a much sought out skill with medical device companies. It takes about 6 months to get the right engineers with the right skills.

The fast growth in the medical industry has contributed to this.

The sad part is that 75% of the work done by these highly skilled engineers is consumed by mounds of documentation work.

So, what is the moral of the story?

Should be a good Six Sigma project.

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Making Others Dreams Happen – Taking That Gleam In A Visionary’s Eye To Reality

Making dreams happen is a two-fold process

  • The visionaries who dream great ideas and takes the concept to a prototype
  • The pragmatists who take it to market
It always surprises me to see my peers proclaim that a project or an idea is not viable mainly because they don’t understand it
What does it take for a project to succeed?
  • The right resources
  • Reasonable capital
  • A Team who believes that it can be done
  • The right seeds planted and watered
  • Empowerment
  • Engineering
  • Risk Management
  • A willingness to shoot from the hip when required
  • Lending a friendly ear to the soldiers
  • Not shrinking from going back to the drawing board
Creativity is the key
Great solutions come when your back is against the wall
Research and present your strategy for meeting Goals
Get buy in from the Team
Go for it and do not look back

Kaizen is a Gentlemen’s Sport – Time Studies Hit Below The Belt

Time studies are inhuman

Why do a Time Study when you can Kaizen with the Team

I don’t think any one likes to be timed or watched.

I wonder whether real Black Belts ever ask for time studies

Then how do you do the measure in DMAIC?

I call it self measurement

Without trust there can be no progress

Revisiting Pareto Charts – Process Improvement & Low Hanging Fruit – Instant Gratification

http://asq.org/learn-about-quality/cause-analysis-tools/overview/pareto.html

ASQ is a great place to browse and learn. The link above is a concise write up of the power of a Pareto Chart and how the same can be generated in Excel. You could do it with Minitab as well.

My first brush with a Pareto chart was in 2001

My assignment for the week was to increase the yield of a packaging line with a major manufacturer of diabetes bio-sensors.

I walked the line, talked to the operators and talked to one of the engineers

Here is the low down

  • The operators maintained a very clear record of the down time and frequency
  • The data was collected and stored in a database
Went and met the keeper of the database
He was thrilled and mentioned that he was waiting for the day when some one would come in and ask him for the data.
Got the data plugged it into Excel and created a Pareto Chart.
Passed it around the weekly meeting with a smug look
Here are the top hitters
  • Meetings
  • Repairs to literature folder
Action
  • Have communication on the line and reduce wasteful meetings
  • Bring in the literature folder company rep and recondition the system
ROI or is it Return On No Investment?
  • Increase in yield from 75% to 95%
Is that instant gratification or what?
Well since then I have used the Pareto Chart any number of times with success and little effort
Who needs training courses?
Is that LEAN manufacturing or what?

Value Stream Mapping Is A Contact Sport – All You Need Is Post It Notes, Observe & Ask Questions

Value Stream Mapping can be used in any industry and in any situation.

There are innumerable resources on the web to teach your self

Just Google it and find out

All that you need is Post It Notes, walk to the scene, observe and ask questions

Soon you will be going Lean

Sure using Visio makes it even better

It is so easy you may wonder why you never tried it before

Who needs training courses?

NIH Fact Sheets – Salivary Diagnostics – Medical Diagnostics Devices in Your Teeth

NIH Fact Sheets – Salivary Diagnostics.

  • Painless Diagnostics
  • Medical Diagnostics Devices Embedded in Teeth
  • Business Opportunity
  • Miniaturization
  • MEMS capability
  • Immediate Feedback
  • And much more