If you have equipment and processes requiring changeovers or setup time, you must learn a lean principle called SMED (single minute exchange of die).
SMED—also known as “quick changeover”—is the practice of radically reducing changeover times.
You must reduce your changeover times for two primary reasons:
- Long changeovers waste your equipment capacity.
- Long changeovers tempt you to increase batch size and overproduce.
Big batches affect the flow of your production system very negatively. So if you want to improve the flow you will have to introduce some quick changeovers sooner or later!
If you can cut your changeover time in half (for example), you can then afford to changeover twice as often without sacrificing additional capacity. Your work in process inventory is also cut in half.
More frequent changeovers allow you to flow smaller batches of product, and with a better overall “mix” overtime.
Consequentially, you can make the production system more nimble and robust by applying quick changeover / SMED practices.
Learn More About SMED Quick Changeover
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