It's Not Their Fault - People vs. Processes

Posted by Scott Czysz on Nov 16, 2017 2:48:51 PM

Written by Scott Czysz, IMEC Technical Specialist

Over the last couple months, I've observed a recurring theme with a few of the companies I am working with: a frustration with "them" (co-workers, factory workers, etc.) not doing what they are supposed to be doing.  As I dig deeper, I have found the problem lies within:

  • Poorly designed (or never designed) processes,
  • Poor or no process documentation,
  • Poor or no training for the people that are doing the process every day, and, not surprisingly,
  • Poor results.
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Avoid Catastrophic Injury with Machine Guarding Fundamentals

Posted by Lori Amerman on Nov 16, 2017 1:48:09 PM

Written by Lori Amerman, IMEC Operations Coordinator

Hazards of machinery can cause catastrophic injuries when employees come in contact.  Crushing and amputations are devastating to the employee’s quality of life.  The employer is faced with many costs of medical expenses, equipment fixes and training.  According to OSHA’s $afety Pays Program, an amputation on average has a direct cost of $77,995 and indirect of $85,794.  At a 3% profit margin assumption these costs would require an additional $2,859,816 in sales to recover.

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Project Management Expert joins IMEC Team of Technical Specialists

Posted by Amy Fitzgerald on Oct 23, 2017 10:18:53 AM

Antuanet Sanchez has joined the IMEC team bringing a strong background in project management and customer service skills to Illinois organizations. As a Technical Specialist with more than 15 years of experience working in a Fortune 500 project management office, Antuanet has a passion for continuous improvement and prides herself on leading cross-functional and remote teams.

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Finding energy efficient products made in the U.S. is easy with the Building Clean website

Posted by Amy Fitzgerald on Oct 19, 2017 12:15:55 PM

The Building Clean database lists more than 2500 U.S. facilities manufacturing energy efficient products in the key energy and water efficient product sectors of appliances, HVAC, insulation, lighting, plumbing, roofing, and sealants – plus an added section on certified water filtration systems. You can search by product type, market sector, locality (both state and zip code), manufacturing tier, and the product’s material composition. Included is information on chemical hazards associated with certain products and those that are certified by third parties as healthy.

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Prepare for the Unexpected: October is National Fire Prevention Month

Posted by Mary Hallock on Oct 12, 2017 2:57:40 PM

Written by Mary Hallock, IMEC Technical Specialist

October is National Fire Prevention Month -- a great time to ensure your workforce is prepared for all types of emergencies. Start by reviewing any emergency procedures and documentation you have for the organization. Are they up-to-date? Do your staff know how to respond in the event of an emergency?

Fire in a business setting can cause an interruption in production, loss of revenue, and even worse, it could put your team at great risk. Understanding a few simple preparedness techniques may save you from a future catastrophe.

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You Need Lean Maintenance to Make Lean Manufacturing Succeed!

Posted by Amy Fitzgerald on Sep 27, 2017 1:59:21 PM

Written by Lawrence Bouvier, CMRP
Vice President – Fuss & O’Neill Manufacturing Solutions

Is equipment downtime holding you back from achieving Lean Manufacturing success?

We all have heard of the seven wastes addressed in Lean Manufacturing, but did you ever consider that if you applied similar principles to equipment health, you’d want a discipline to create Lean Maintenance?

Overproduction, Inventory and Waiting are three of the seven lean wastes that can come as a result of equipment failures.  A good maintenance process will keep these to minimum levels.  So, how can we achieve this?  The only way is to minimize the amount of maintenance and repair that we perform on machines!

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Cybersecurity – It’s Just One Piece of a Comprehensive Information Security Program

Posted by John Remsey on Sep 26, 2017 9:13:39 AM

Written by John Remsey, IMEC Senior Technical Specialist

Cybersecurity has become a hot topic within manufacturing over the past months, especially for the Defense supply chain with the federal government increasing their emphasis on addressing threats to the security of information.  In December 2015, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) released a rule to the Defense Acquisition Federal Regulation Supplement (DAFRS) that requires government contractors to implement the requirements of National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Publication (SP) 800-171 by December 31, 2017.  With this deadline fast approaching, conversation, and urgency, to become compliant is increasing.

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Process Maps: Building block basics for your business

Posted by Gretchen Clifton on Feb 22, 2017 1:39:33 PM

Written by Gretchen Clifton, IMEC Technical Specialist

The new ISO 9001:2015 standard places more emphasis on understanding our processes; how they impact our business from an individual process standpoint as well as how they integrate with other processes. The key to success is creating processes that are efficient and effective, integrate well with others for a cohesive flow from start to finish, and ultimately, provide the results we need.

Many companies have a high level process map that fulfills the requirements of ISO or TS, or perhaps as an outcome of a value stream mapping activity. They created it, but has it really been used for anything?

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Sometimes we need to focus on the safety basics

Posted by Mary Hallock on Jan 13, 2017 11:05:37 AM

Written by Mary Hallock, IMEC Technical Specialist and OSHA Authorized Trainer

Posture, Positioning and People Movement

When we focus our time and efforts on making safety corrections we often focus on machine guarding, lockout/tagout and some of the other programs that require written programs, and regular documented training. However, a good deal of injuries and costs are caused by injuries on walking surfaces or due to ergonomic issues in our work. 

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OSHA Publishes 2016 List of Top 10 Citations

Posted by Amy Fitzgerald on Oct 28, 2016 12:40:33 PM

How do you prioritize your safety program and improvements?

As a business leader, you understand the strict focus that's often required to make and keep your employees and the work environment a safe place. But sometimes it's hard to figure out how to focus the training and documentation efforts of your safety program. There is so much to do to make sure your employees understand the best safe practices.

Every year the US Department of Labor publishes the OSHA Top 10 Citations and violation categories. This is for your consideration and benefit!

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