Industrial facilities, such as manufacturing plants, rely on streamlined production processes and efficiency to produce products for their clients. Even the most efficient facilities, however, generate some form of waste. Every year, the United States produces approximately 7.6 billion tons of industrial solid waste.
Businesses, therefore, should make waste reduction a priority. Cutting down the amount of waste does more than just help the environment. It saves companies money by spending less on disposal.
Here are six measures you can implement in your manufacturing facility to reduce waste:
- Enumerate and Address the Key Areas of Waste
Waste isn’t just the garbage produced by employees. It’s also anything that does not contribute to your bottom line, offers no value to your customers, and drains your revenue. Waste may be present in every department of your business. Your company should take the time to identify common waste areas and take steps to reduce the generated garbage.
Here are a few questions to help you determine the key waste areas in your facility:
- What types of production errors in your facility result in waste?
- Have you been manufacturing too many goods that your customers won’t use? If so, what measures are you taking to reduce the surplus?
- Are there significant delays in your production methods that are causing order cancellations?
- Improve Your Facility’s Inventory Management
Managing your inventory efficiently means maintaining the right amount of raw materials and finished goods in your processing plant. This minimizes the risk of loss, damage and waste generation.
Efficient inventory management begins with the proper procurement of goods or raw materials used to create a finished product. Your business should effectively forecast your inventory needs. Make sure that the type and amount of materials you procure are sufficient for your production. Also, the goods you’ll produce should satisfy the demands of your customers. You don’t want to make finished products that your customers don’t need.
Apart from inventory forecasting, you need to look at past data and current trends. Look at the previous sales figures to determine which business products are in demand with your customers. Then, examine the trends to learn the products on the market that can bring revenue to your business. These will allow you to manufacture and sell the right items.
Proper inventory management also demands regular monitoring of stock levels. Know when to re-order, so you can avoid stock-outs that could undermine your production.
- Use a Trash Compactor
An industrial garbage compactor cuts down the garbage volume by compressing it into densely packed squares that save space. Having this machine in your production facility can reduce your trash removal frequency. When your plant has less garbage piling up, trash haulers and collection trucks won’t need to visit your premises often. Fewer pickups translate to cost savings in the long run.
- Come up with a Preventive Maintenance Schedule
Although wear and tear normally occur in manufacturing plants, the lack of routine maintenance can accelerate the deterioration process of a machine. Faulty equipment may produce defective products or materials that your customers can’t use. What’s more, the machine may sustain serious damage over time, leading to loss of time and money.
Your plant can prevent this by creating and adhering to a preventive maintenance schedule. Budgeting and controlling expenses are way better than reacting to a preventable breakdown, which results in unnecessary overtime and higher shipping costs to meet delivery timetables.
- Cut Down on Water Usage
Industrial garbage isn’t the only thing your facility should worry about when reducing waste. You should also consider wastewater and industrial sludge. You could minimize these elements by reducing water consumption in your day-to-day operations. A few processes you can introduce include reverse osmosis, the use of drying agents, and dry machining.
Employees can also contribute to the reduction of water usage in your facility. They can, for instance, get rid of bottled water. If they want to drink from your water coolers, ask them to bring reusable cups or drink in glasses. You can cut down your facility’s waste levels with this advocacy.
- Invest in Automation
You may wonder if purchasing automation software is ideal for your production facility, as you’re likely to spend a lot of money to get that platform implemented. Rather than see automation apps as another expense, you should treat it as an investment. The cost of spending on this platform is less expensive than what you spend regularly on new machines, workers, and unnecessary tools. By introducing an automated manufacturing solution to your business, you can cut down operating expenses, human error and the need for manual labor.
Employ these six measures to manage production waste in your plant. Effective waste management improves your facility’s sustainability, which helps boost your corporate image.