10th Apr 2014

Information Cubes arrive on the Shop Floor

In recent months, some rather unusual looking objects have been appearing on the factory floor at Jordan Manufacturing.

The in-house designed “box with a leg” or Information Cube aims to provide the manufacturing team with live information that is essential to achieving and maintaining optimum performance and high levels of customer satisfaction.

The cubes are not business generic.  Each cell within the manufacturing facility has its own cube dedicated to the particular product / contract being completed by that cell. One face is dedicated to each of the key operational areas, safety, quality, cost and delivery – SQDC.

Rather than using hearsay and opinion, decision-making is based on factual data such as the metrics, controls and other useful information relating to the cell, which is recorded and displayed on the cube. Each day the manufacturing team review the data displayed on the cube with the cell workforce, to establish what has been achieved, along with any issues or concerns they may have in order to meet the required output targets.

Using the Skills Matrix as an example, it clearly identifies who within the team has the necessary skills and training to undertake tasks specific to that cell and importantly, who the back up is in the event of any absence. Analysing this information, together with the cell holiday chart enables effective resource planning for the immediate production period, whilst also identifying skills shortages and training requirements going forward. This information is clear and visible for all to see.

Prior to the introduction of the cubes, much of the information was shown and recorded ‘somewhere’. However, it was not easily available at the point of best use nor communicated to the people carrying out the job. Consequently, the teams were unaware of their individual performance; good or bad!

The use of the cubes now means that everyone has an in-depth appreciation of the job status within minutes, knowing job progress against timescales, conformance with quality requirements and the effect their individual contribution could make to the whole business.

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