Change Management Using PDCA – Understanding the Impact of Minor Disruptions | Operational Excellence Quick Hits

Quick Hits share weekly tips and techniques on topics related to Operational Excellence. This week’s theme relates to process minor disruptions. We hope you enjoy the information presented!

, Change Management Using PDCA – Understanding the Impact of Minor Disruptions | Operational Excellence Quick Hits, Future State Engineering
, Change Management Using PDCA – Understanding the Impact of Minor Disruptions | Operational Excellence Quick Hits, Future State Engineering
In today’s session, we’re going to talk about dealing with process disruptions that can affect the process productivity. And it’s going to show up in the efficiency numbers of your overall process effectiveness measure. So there’s many issues that can reduce the productivity. And these minor disruptions, many times appear to be a nuisance and they don’t get documented or get reported. So they’re happening over and over and over in the process, but they don’t seem significant. So nobody’s reporting them and nobody’s addressing them. I see these issues as one of the major issues in affecting process performance. Many times they’re not dealt with and the process issues just happen over and over and over again, and show up in the efficiency numbers. And then, people don’t understand why the efficiency numbers are down and nobody can explain the reason why. In many cases, these minor disruptions are not insignificant and it can affect that overall process effectiveness greatly.
Some of the issues that I’ve seen in many organizations, these disruptions can come in many forms. So the first one here is insufficient process inputs, so we’re not getting sufficient inputs from our previous process. And so, we’re having to deal with these issues because the inputs aren’t correct. And what I’m talking about inputs, I’m talking about information isn’t correct, materials aren’t correct, materials have an issue that I got to deal with, information as an issue I got to deal with. Program isn’t correct or the program was changed and I don’t have the latest revision, so revision history becomes a problem. There’s many different forms of process inputs that can cause disruptions in the process. Next is minor process adjustment. So the process is going, and then throughout the process, I got to keep making these minor adjustments because things keep going out of adjustment.
These process adjustments, again seem like a nuisance, but they can take significant time from the process. Next is operator interference. So most people don’t understand what this is, but operator interference is where an operator might be attending to multiple processes or multiple machines or multiple things at one time. And when he’s working at the one process, another process goes down and he can’t be at two places at one time. So there’s an interference where he’s working on one thing, something else needs attention and he can’t deal with that right now because he’s dealing with another issue. So this is a significant issue. You can also have machine interference. So if there’s machines that are tied together and parsed, they need to get transferred from one machine to the next machine, and there’s a minor disruption on one machine, then that interferes with the next machine in the process.
So there’s also machine interference, also operator doing multitasking, so trying to do too many things at once, and they’re not completing anything and the process is down because he’s working on multiple things. Next is minor process malfunctions. So we have a malfunction that happens in the process and I got to do something to deal with that. So an example here is many people had the issue where you go to make a copy, and then when you go to run the copy, the copier jams. And I got to take the copier part to get the paper that’s jammed out of the copier and then put it back together and process again. So that’s a minor process malfunction. And lastly, operator slowing down. So I’ve seen many cases where the operator doesn’t have a big pile of work in front of him and he’s slowing down because he thinks he’s going to run himself out of work or something’s happened in the past that’s causing problems.
So he’s like, “Oh, if I run at this speed, it’s going to cause a problem in the process. So instead of fixing the issue, I’m going to slow down because this issue comes up when I run at a certain rate and I don’t want to deal with that issue.” So they slow down. So these process disruptions can create big problems for the organization in terms of productivity. And again, it’s going to show up in the efficiency number. And to overcome these disruptions, you got to be able to monitor the process, understand what these minor disruptions are, document those, take those occurrences, Pareto them, and come up with a priority list to start addressing these issues doing that will improve the overall process effectiveness greatly.