Starting any business is difficult but starting a manufacturing business is an even more complex task. It can take time to land on the most efficient and profitable way to manage production. Once you get your equipment, raw materials, and processes down to a fine art and your business starts to fly, it is a great feeling. Once there is a growing demand for your products, the next logical step in your business’ expansion is to scale production, but this task is rarely as simple as it sounds. This guide outlines how you can successfully scale production processes in your manufacturing business.
Simplicity is key
The more complex your processes and the more stages there are to your manufacturing, the longer it will take and the more likely it is that mistakes will happen. To achieve growth that is both sustainable and predictable, your business needs to rely on core processes that are easy to follow and repeat. When you notice that something about your manufacturing process (or your business in general) has become complex, it is time to take a step back and try to simplify it.
Put the customer first
A big motivation behind scaling up production is to increase your profits, but it is important not to lose sight of quality and your customer’s needs along the way. You may have to change the raw materials or equipment that you use when manufacturing on a larger scale, but if this results in a substandard product, you may lose existing customers. It is essential to stay in touch with your customers from the point of purchase, through production, and when the product has been dispatched to maintain a connection as much as possible.
Support and listen to your employees
Your employees are vital to the efficiency and productivity of your manufacturing procedures. You need to recruit hardworking and resourceful people, but you are also responsible for retaining them. To ensure that they are motivated to perform at their best and feel a sense of loyalty, you need to invest in them and show them that they are valued. Click here for tips on motivating your workforce.
In some businesses, the owner builds such a strong team that they feel able to step away from the day-to-day operation and delegate to their staff. This is not necessarily a problem, but it does not mean that owners should become completely detached. You still need to stay close to the business so that you can respond to small issues before they develop into major problems.
Spend money on the right equipment
To scale your manufacturing business successfully, you may need to invest in new materials and equipment. Before you spend a lot of money on equipment, you should consider whether pilot plants would be useful. A pilot plant enables you to test new production methods on a small scale before you invest a lot of time and money in equipment that may not be the right solution for your business.
Track and trust the data
Do not underestimate the power of data when it comes to streamlining manufacturing processes, identifying problems, and saving money. By analyzing statistical data at each stage of the production process and looking for patterns, you can find out how to optimize your systems and maximize growth.