Supporting quality improvement and reducing all forms of waste are crucial points on which we are constantly striving to remain an industrial company. To do this, we rely on a number of reference materials and documents, including the standard work. Its roles in the smooth running of the company are multiple since it must avoid wasting resources and time and is a key element in continuous improvement.
The standard work against waste
In the ideal of any company, all its employees are able to do the job the right way, and this, the first time. This is, of course, a perfect scenario which, by definition, does not really exist. Indeed, errors and discrepancies are inevitable, even in the best designed organizational models, but they can be reduced and their impact on performance can be mitigated.
That is why we are creating this first-rate document, the standard work. It specifies to the employee everything he needs to accomplish the mission inherent to his position, in the most efficient way possible, without generating an unnecessary cost, without wasting resources and without wasting time.
In other words, the standard work, which is fully in line with Lean Management, describes the best way to proceed, to apply the work instructions, for a given operation and by stabilizing cycle and operating times.
A tool for continuous improvement
Standard Operating Procedures can be assimilated to labour norms and, as such, constitute a kind of framework within which workers evolve and prevent them from deviating at one time or another in the performance of their tasks. Thus, when new employees arrive, the standard work can be used as a basis for training them, which ensures that product quality does not fall and can even be improved. It also provides the opportunity to improve lead times and productivity.
The work standard also leads the teams to carry out problem-solving procedures, which also contributes to the edifice of continuous improvement.
The characteristics of the standard work
The standard work is necessarily evolving. As explained above, it changes as corrections are made through the problem-solving activity of the entire team. The standard work is, therefore, anything but an immutable document. We are dealing with a “living” medium, regularly updated and therefore for which digitization is an unavoidable way, since it is what facilitates its updating and dissemination to the people and services called upon to use it.
The standard work must also be perfectly clear and legible, in order to leave as little space as possible for the risk of misinterpretation and errors. It is a first-rate training tool and should make it possible to guide newcomers to a position in an efficient manner.
Picomto is the web and mobile solution for writing, consulting and analyzing standard work document in a digital, visual and interactive way. Feel free to contact us to find out how we can help you digitize your technical documentation.