In the manufacturing sector, it’s where all the magic happens: the factory. Here, exciting product developments are realised and raw materials transformed into the finished product. Efficiency is key; bottlenecks and downtimes need to be kept to a minimum. The layout of the production facility can play a key role here. In this post we share our top tips on ensuring yours is successful.
Enable optimum flow of goods and processes
Obviously, the layout and organisation of your factory depends on the type and number of products being manufactured. However, there are some basic guiding principles that it is always good to bear in mind. The modern concept of a “lean” layout aims to achieve a smooth, uninterrupted flow of goods and processes within the factory. Workstations should be laid out in a logical way, such as with straight line, U-shaped or zigzag flows, and be close together. Backtracking should be avoided at all costs, as this increases the possibility of the work flow becoming interrupted and parts becoming lost. Also think about communication: if two work stations need to be able to keep each other in the loop about what’s happening, make sure the layout enables quick and easy communication between them. A sensible, well thought-out workflow also improves general occupational safety, helping avoid accidents and downtime.
Utilise space as efficiently as possible
Make sure that there is no unutilised space on your factory floor. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you should pack everything in as tightly as possible – people need plenty of space to move around to avoid any accidents and create a pleasant working environment for staff, so sometimes space should be allocated for this purpose. When it comes to managing space efficiently, you firstly need to ensure, as mentioned, that work stations are arranged to fit in logically with the production workflow. A second main point to consider is fully utilising vertical space – this is paramount. When it comes to storage, vertical space can be hugely useful (making sure, of course that goods are arranged safely). The best way to utilise this space, however, is to have a mezzanine floor installed. This is an excellent option if you need more space in your factory and want to avoid the hassle of moving premises, as a mezzanine can also easily be installed over your existing production lines without obstruction. The extra space could be used for offices or storage, or a mezzanine floor can be integrated into the smooth workflow in your factory to make maximum use of the space for production.
Make it look good
Functionality is usually the main priority when planning the layout of your manufacturing facility. However, don’t underestimate the power of aesthetics. An attractive factory layout brings multiple benefits. On the one hand, it will make a positive impression on clients, suppliers and investors visiting the premises. It sends a clear signal that your company is professional and organised, with a focus on quality. On the other hand, a pleasant, airy environment is good for staff morale, in turn boosting their productivity and your profits. Our mezzanine floors look smart, neat and professional and, as well as their functional benefits, they visually really open up the space.
Get in touch with us to find out how a mezzanine floor could benefit your factory and your business. Simply give us a call on 01440 268 411 or send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org or via our contact form.