PCB007 Magazine

PCB-Oct2015

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62 The PCB Magazine • October 2015 What are Customers Willing to Pay For? (value Stream Mapping) First of all, managers and engineers must know exactly what is happening on the shop floor, and being told is not enough. They must take time to go to the shop floor, analyze the whole system, talk to people, encourage them to speak truthfully, get to know each area in de- tail, and look at the factory with the customers' eyes. They must not try to find excuses for the real state, but see opportunities in each difficul- ty. This is not a one-day walk, but an activity every single industrial engineer and manager should incorporate into their daily routine. Once done, it is time to design the value stream mapping (VSM), in which the current state is contrasted with the future state—the de- sired one. When designing a VSM, team leaders should put themselves in the customers' shoes, including the internal customers, asking ques- tions like: What is the customer willing to pay for? When do they want to receive their parts? What should I do to deliver parts on time? Each feature that the customer is willing to pay for is called value-added; everything else is defined as non-value added, or waste. Developing a VSM requires team coopera- tion, and collecting data such as number of op- erators, shifts worked, working time, and cycle time are needed. There are basically two different, but con- verging, concepts regarding cycle time. The first one is related to a specific process such as plating, where cycle time is defined as the pro- duction rate of the entire operation, including setup, loading and unloading. On the other hand, there are some people who define it as the production rate of a part from the beginning to the end (e.g., from raw material preparation to final quality control). Nevertheless, it does not change the fact that working to reduce the production rate of the bottleneck will reduce the cycle time of the whole operation. Having done this, engineers are able to have an overall look at the entire process and should start working on what most impacts the com- pany throughput—the bottlenecks. Each com- pany will have its own bottlenecks, and talking about PCBs, we might identify several bottle- necks depending on the PCB layout. Eliminating or Mitigating Everything Else (Waste) Eliminating wastes are the heart of the Toy- ota Production System [1] . As we see in Figure 2, most of the activities we do in a production line are non-value-added, THE PCB MARATHON FeATure Figure 1: contrasting strategies and trade-offs.

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